Jennifer Downing joined Harvard in January of 2013 as Assistant Athletic Director for Alumni Relations and Stewardship for the Department of Harvard Athletics.
Downing didn't moved far from her previous role with the University after spending the previous five years as assistant director of development for the Harvard China Fund. In that role, Downing developed individualized fundraising plans and engagement strategies that resulted in $14.4 million dollars in pledges.
All told, Downing has worked at Harvard since 2001 including stops with the University Development Office’s International Initiative Team, Faculty of Arts & Sciences’ Capital Giving Department, the International Initiative Team and the Alumni Association’s Global Series events.
A Wellesley College graduate, Downing earned her bachelor’s degree in East Asian Studies before earning a master’s degree from Harvard’s Graduate School of Education in education policy and management. Downing has ties to the athletics realm as well.
At Wellesley, Downing was a four-year Academic All-America swimmer and senior captain. She served two years as a member of the school’s Student-Athlete Advisory Committee.
Downing has volunteered with the Friends of Wellesley College Athletics National Committee since 2006 and is also a lead volunteer with Swim Across America’s local Boston Planning Committee. An avid music fan, Downing plays clarinet in the Dudley House Orchestra at Harvard.