Hugh Jones and Eric Valdescaro join UH Foundation management team

University of Hawaiʻi
Margot Schrire, (808) 956-6774
Director of Communications, UH Foundation
Posted: May 17, 2018

Hugh R. Jones and Eric Valdescaro
Hugh R. Jones and Eric Valdescaro

The University of Hawai‘i Foundation is delighted to welcome Hugh R. Jones and Eric Valdescaro to its management team.

Hugh R. Jones will join the UH Foundation on June 4, 2018, as in-house counsel. In this key role Jones will support the UH Foundation with board corporate governance and legal matters, compliance with state and federal nonprofit reporting requirements, and the fundraising and asset management mission. Reporting to the president and CEO, he will serve as the primary in-house legal adviser, overseeing compliance, corporate, contract and document review and all UH Foundation’s legal affairs.

Jones is a seasoned legal professional with substantial experience providing legal counsel and advice on corporate, governance, tax, regulatory and transactional matters specific to the nonprofit sector. Jones, a senior deputy attorney general, has served with the Hawaiʻi Attorney General’s office for almost 29 years.  For more than a decade, Jones supervised the Tax and Charities Division of the Hawaiʻi Attorney General's office. He was responsible for developing and overseeing the Attorney General's charitable oversight program on registration, corporate governance, and charitable fundraising related matters. The Tax and Charities Division provides regulatory oversight over 4,500 public charities, charitable trusts and private foundations in Hawaiʻi and enforces the state's charitable solicitation law.  Jones also drafted several legislative acts affecting nonprofit governance and fundraising practices.  From 2010-2016 he was a visiting professor at the UH William S. Richardson School of Law, where he co-taught “The Law of Nonprofit Organizations.”

Jones earned his juris doctor from the University of Wisconsin Law School. He is a past president of the Hawaiʻi State Bar Association and the National Association of State Charity Officials. In recognition of his work, he has received multiple awards, including the 2016 AG Senior Staff of the Year award from the National Association of Attorneys General; 2007 Hawaiʻi State Bar Association's President's Award; and is a four-time recipient of the Attorney General's Sustained Superior Performance Award.  Jones is a frequent speaker and faculty member at national and Hawaiʻi conferences and seminars devoted to nonprofit governance and regulatory matters.

Eric Valdescaro joined the team as associate vice president for advancement services. He manages several areas within the advancement services operation, including gift processing, prospect research and management, reporting and analytics, donor compliance and gift administration, and information technology. In this role he establishes principles and applies technical solutions to enhance the organization’s processes and infrastructure to grow the success of the foundation’s fundraising and alumni engagement mission.

Valdescaro has more than 25 years of experience supporting higher education and foundation advancement. Positions include most recently serving as the executive director of advancement services at California Lutheran University, where he oversaw advancement services for the university, its affiliate Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary and KCLU public radio.

During the course of his career Valdescaro has been involved with six capital fundraising campaigns, including Dartmouth College’s $1.3 Billion Campaign for the Dartmouth Experience, and most recently Cal Lutheran’s ongoing $30M Science Initiative.

Valdescaro earned his master's in public policy and administration from California Lutheran University and his bachelor of arts from the University of Connecticut. Passionate about the advancement sector, Valdescaro serves on both the Records Management and Information Management Best Practices committees for the Association of Advancement Services Professionals, which works to strengthen the field of advancement services and the careers of individual professionals by connecting, informing and empowering a network of current and aspiring advancement services leaders.

Join the UHF Team

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The University of Hawai‘i Foundation, a nonprofit organization, raises private funds to support the University of Hawai‘i System. The mission of the University of Hawai‘i Foundation is to unite donors’ passions with the University of Hawai‘i’s aspirations by raising philanthropic support and managing private investments to benefit UH, the people of Hawai‘i and our future generations.

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