Purdue Executive Chosen as UA Senior VP for University Relations

Feb. 12, 2013
Teri Lucie Thompson
Teri Lucie Thompson

Teresa Lucie Thompson, a nationally recognized marketing executive, has been named the University of Arizona’s senior vice president for university relations.

Thompson, currently vice president for marketing and media and chief marketing officer at Purdue University, was chosen following an extensive nationwide search and will join the UA on May 20.

Thompson will report directly to President Ann Weaver Hart and serve as a key member of the President’s Cabinet. Thompson will aid the president in setting the vision and agenda for advancing the University and strengthening its reputation locally, nationally and globally.

"Teri Thompson has an exceptional national reputation both in the private and higher education sectors," Hart said. "I am thrilled to have someone of her caliber leading the efforts to tell the University's story around the world."

Thompson will oversee institutional communications, marketing, brand management, government relations, community relations and Arizona Public Media.

"I was delighted to learn the Latin word in the UA's University Seal means 'upwards,' as it perfectly describes the University's many contributions to society, its athletic successes and its reputational trajectory under President Hart's leadership," Thompson said. "It is with great optimism and even greater enthusiasm that I join this fine institution."

At Purdue, Thompson has overseen strategic marketing, market research, brand strategy, creative services, public relations and communications, as well as the institution’s online presence and public radio station. Thompson was responsible for creating cohesion around institutional messaging across the university’s 10 colleges, while expanding the institution's educational and scholarly reputation and transforming Purdue's marketing enterprise.

In addition to developing Purdue's reputation for excellence among its peers nationally and internationally, Thompson brought a fresh discipline to higher education marketing: building an online dashboard to increase accountability, creating a market research function and launching digital initiatives ranging from search engine optimization to the creation of a social media policy.  

Recognizing this work, the American Marketing Association's publication, Marketing News, featured Thompson's work with Purdue's marketing efforts in its "Best in Class" series.

Thompson earned the AMA’s Higher Education Marketer of the Year Award in 2012 for "extraordinary leadership and achievement in the field of higher education marketing." She received the American Advertising Association’s Lifetime Achievement Award in Indiana in 2011. In 2010, Thompson was named a recipient of the Stevie Award as "Marketing Executive of the Year."

Prior to her arrival at Purdue, Thompson served as vice president of marketing for Safeco Insurance. Thompson also served in a variety of marketing and public relations positions at State Farm Insurance, the last of which was directing the company's customer segment marketing division, where she spearheaded the company's efforts in marketing to women, young adults and multicultural markets.

Thompson earned a bachelor's degree in English and a master's degree in education, both from Illinois State University. She also earned her certification in new product development from the University of Michigan's executive education program.

Thompson is a founding board member of the Marketing to Moms Coalition and a member of the AMA, AAF, the Economic Club of Chicago, the National Association of Female Executives and the Wall Street Journal’s Women in the Economy Task Force. Author of "Tuning into Mom: Understanding America’s Most Powerful Consumer," she is a frequent speaker at national marketing and industry events as an expert on institutional branding and marketing to women.