The board of directors of the West Virginia Independent Colleges and Universities (WVICU) announced today that Ben Beakes will serve as its executive director.  Beakes’ appointment is effective immediately. 

Beakes is a 2002 graduate of the University of Charleston, a member-institution of the WVICU, where he also served as vice president for development from 2009-2014.  He currently is the managing member of Three Point Strategies, LLC, a West Virginia-based government affairs and public relations firm.  In addition to serving the role as executive director, Beakes’ firm has been retained to provide day-to-day management of WVICU.   

“On behalf of the board of directors of the WVICU I’d like to welcome Ben to our organization,” said Dr. Tim Barry, chairman of the board and current president of Alderson Broaddus University.  “WVICU’s role is shifting as political and economic environments evolve.  Our members identified a need for a greater emphasis on advocacy and public relations while continuing our efforts to raise scholarship dollars for our students.  Beakes’ background as a product of a WVICU-member institution and his reputation as an effective government affairs professional make him a perfect fit to lead our efforts.”

“West Virginia’s private universities play a critical role in producing an educated workforce and innovators for our state,” Beakes said.  “I am a graduate from a WVICU member-institution and know first-hand the value these universities provide to our state, local communities, and most importantly our students.  As policy-makers begin to make decisions about the future of higher education in West Virginia we want to help them understand the contributions that WVICU member-institutions have made and can continue to make.” 

Nearly 4,000 West Virginia residents attend a WVICU institution.  Combined, WVICU represents the state’s third largest university with roughly 8,500 students, over 3,000 of which are first-generation college students.

Beakes replaces Becky Ceperley who is resigning from her position to focus more on her role as a Charleston City Councilwoman.  “We can’t say enough about Becky’s leadership of WVICU over the past couple of years,” Barry said.  “The board and I thank her for her service, wisdom, and guidance.” 

For more information about WVICU please visit www.wvicu.org. 

For more information about Beakes and his company, Three Point Strategies, LLC visit www.3pswv.com.