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ABOUT US

THE ASSOCIATION OF INDEPENDENT COLLEGES AND UNIVERSITIES IN MASSACHUSETTS

AICU Mass provides a public voice on key matters that concern private independent colleges and universities in Massachusetts. We advocate for increased funding for need-based financial aid programs, economic and workforce development support, incentives for college savings programs, additional funding for research and innovation and to protect the tax-exempt status of nonprofit colleges and universities.

Established in 1967 by college and university presidents, AICU Mass is the leading voice on public policy issues affecting independent higher education in Massachusetts. The association comprises 59 degree-granting, accredited, independent (private) colleges and universities across the commonwealth. We work closely with member institutions to promote increased awareness of the significant contributions that colleges and universities make to the cultural, economic, and knowledge-based reputation of Massachusetts.

WHO WE ARE

OUR BOARD OF DIRECTORS & MEMBERS 2022-2023

OFFICERS

CHAIR

MARISA KELLY

President, Suffolk University

VICE-CHAIR/CHAIR-ELECT

ROBERT JOHNSON

President, Western New England University

SECRETARY/TREASURER

MARY LOU RETELLE

President, Anna Maria College

BOARD MEMBERS

BRENT CHRITE

President, Bentley University

NICHOLAS COVINO (ex-officio)

President, William James College

STEVEN DISALVO

President, Endicott College

DAVID FITHIAN

President, Clark University

AISHA FRANCIS

President, Benjamin Franklin Cummings Institute of Technology

LILY HSU

President, Laboure College of Healthcare

RONALD D. LIEBOWITZ

President, Brandeis University

MAUD MANDEL

President, Williams College

HOWARD PURCELL

President, New England College of Optometry

GLENN SULMASY

President, Nichols College

AICU MASS STAFF

Rob McCarron

President

Rob McCarron was appointed president and CEO of AICU Mass on June 1, 2021. Mr. McCarron joined AICU Mass in July 2006 and previously served as Senior Vice President and General Counsel. Prior to joining AICU Mass, Mr. McCarron served as Director of Legal Affairs for the Massachusetts House Committee on Ways and Means (2003-2006) and as Chief Legal Counsel for the Massachusetts House Joint Committee on the Judiciary. From 1999 to 2001, Mr. McCarron was counsel for MetLife Auto & Home Insurance Co., and from 1994 to 1999, he was an associate at Finneran, Byrne & Drechsler, L.L.P.

Mr. McCarron received his bachelor of arts degree in business/management from Clark University (1988) and his Juris Doctor cum laude from Suffolk University Law School (1993).

rob.mccarron@aicum.org

Bradley Freeman

Vice President for Government Relations

Bradley Freeman joined AICU Mass in June 2012 and serves as Vice President for Government Relations. Mr. Freeman previously served as Associate Director for O’Neill and Associates, where he provided government relations services to state and federal clients. Prior to working for O’Neill and Associates, Mr. Freeman served as a Regional Field Director in New Hampshire for former New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson’s presidential campaign and as a legislative aide to State Representative Alice Wolf (D-Cambridge).

Mr. Freeman received his bachelor of arts degree in political science from Providence College.

brad.freeman@aicum.org

Sonya Hagopian

Vice President for Communications

Sonya Hagopian rejoined AICU MA in August 2022 as vice president for communications, having served in a similar role from 2007-2012.

Most recently, Ms. Hagopian served as chief communications officer for Christie Campus Health, a privately held start up that provides mental health resources for colleges and universities and their students. Prior to that, she served as vice president of public relations and corporate communications at Tufts Health Plan, where she was responsible for internal and external communications; crisis and issues management; social media; community sponsorships and executive communications.

Ms. Hagopian received her Bachelor of Arts in Communications from Boston College.

sonya.hagopian@aicum.org

Kaitlyn Pires

Vice President for Administration and Member Relations

Kaitlyn Pires serves as Vice President for Administration and Member Relations for the Association of Independent Colleges and Universities in Massachusetts (AICU Mass). In addition to strengthening the existing relationships with AICU Mass’ 59 members, she manages AICU Mass’ affiliate membership program, serves as event planner for all of AICU Mass’ events and ensures that AICU Mass remains operationally sound.

Ms. Pires received her master’s degree in public administration, with a nonprofit management concentration, from Suffolk University’s Sawyer Business School. She also has a bachelor’s degree in communications from Curry College.

kaitlyn.pires@aicum.org