Regional Alumni Leadership

Regardless of the size of your regional community, having strong and well-defined leadership is a key component to its success. The size of your community’s leadership team will depend on your community’s size and activity level. Most larger communities (600+ alumni) are led by an executive committee with a president and several other volunteers. Smaller communities (599 and fewer) may be led by one or two regional representatives.

International community leaders have slightly different guidelines than domestic ones. You can find more details on International Community Representatives here.

The term for a regional leader is two to three years. Limiting term length gives other alumni the opportunity to get involved.

Regional Leader Requirements

To best serve your needs and those of your fellow alumni, the Johns Hopkins Alumni Association (JHAA) sets minimum standards to help guarantee the vitality and longevity of regional alumni communities. Regional leaders must meet the following requirements in order to maintain active status, receive university support, and continue to use the JHAA name.

  • Plan and execute a consistent calendar of events; the number can be decided based on the size and interests of your community.
  • Depending on the size of your community, recruit a committee of alumni volunteers to assist with planning events. We encourage you to have a committee that is representative across divisions.
  • Communicate regularly with your local volunteers, planning committee, or co-chair. This may include in-person meetings or conference calls. It is up to you to determine the best method of communication for your unique group.
  • Serve as a local resource for current and incoming students as well as alumni that are new to the area.
  • Respond to inquiries about your alumni community from fellow alumni or university staff.
  • Where possible, maintain social media group pages on platforms such as Facebook and LinkedIn.  Maintain a presence on GoHopOnline.com and respond to questions or posts about your region.
  • Take pictures during events and submit them to your staff liaison. You can also #JHUAlumni on social media sites.
  • Communicate with your staff liaison regularly so we can best serve the alumni population in your area.
  • Keep track of attendance at events. Share the names of walk-ins and no shows with your staff liaison. 
  • Keep all alumni contact information and mailing lists confidential and used for alumni purposes only. Announcements or other communications made for personal, commercial or political gain are strictly prohibited.
  • Adhere to trademark usage guidelines in all permitted uses of the university's name, logo, and other trademarks.
  • Comply with policies and requests from the JHAA.

Common Leadership Structures

There are a number of ways that regional communities can organize their volunteer leadership.  Some of the most typical are:

  • One President – one alumnus/alumnae presides over a committee of volunteers
  • Co-Presidents – two alumni manage all aspects of the group, or preside over a committee of volunteers
  • Executive Committee – a small group of alumni manage all aspects of the group, or preside over a larger contingent of volunteers. 

Smaller regional communities can operate effectively with 1-3 volunteers.  Larger regional communities function best when there are 4-8 volunteers.

Common Alumni Volunteer Roles

Depending on the size of your community, there are a number of leadership roles and volunteer positons that can be established.  Here are some of the most common and beneficial roles, with suggested responsibilities:

  • President (or Chair) – organizes and presides over committee meetings, oversees the budget, serves as the liaison to the Office of Alumni Relations
  • Vice President – supports the President and steps in where needed
  • Secretary/Communications Chair – manages the committee mailing lists, takes and distributes minutes at committee meetings
  • Social Media Chair – manages any social network group pages, promotes events on GoHopOnline, Facebook, Twitter, etc.; assures that photos are taken at events and posted online
  • Young Alumni Chair/Liaison – represents the interests of undergraduates of the past 10 years; organizes programming for young alumni, assures that price points are reasonable for young alumni
  • Programming Chairs – a number of volunteers can take on event planning roles based on interests.  For example: 
    • Community Service Chair – organizes volunteer events such as a local President’s Day of Service or Hopkins In Action event
    • Cultural Chair – organizes theater performances, concerts, or museum tours
    • Educational Chair – organizes guest speaker events or faculty talks
    • Family Chair – organizes events and experiences geared towards families with young children
    • Food and Drink Chair – organizes foodie dinners, beer and wine tastings or happy hours
    • Signature Events Chair – organizes crab feasts, holiday gatherings,  or any annual event unique to your region
    • Sports and Recreation Chair – organizes recreational sports leagues, lacrosse game watches, or events with local professional sports teams (e.g. MLS, NBA, NHL, MLB, etc.)