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News Release: Jamie Simek promoted to Vice President for Advancement at Eiteljorg Museum

Experienced resource development professional leads museum’s fundraising and communications

Jamie Simek

Tuesday, May 14, 2024

INDIANAPOLIS – The Eiteljorg Museum of American Indians and Western Art is pleased to announce that it has promoted Jamie Simek to the position of vice president for advancement.

In her new role, Simek leads the museum’s institution-wide fundraising and communications initiatives, overseeing staff responsible for annual giving, corporate partnerships, grants, charitable events and marketing. Among her important ongoing duties are cultivating and maintaining relationships with high-level donors for planned giving while leading efforts to recruit, retain and involve general members and donors.

Simek since last year has served as the Eiteljorg’s development director, and in April, she became interim vice president for advancement. Officially promoted to the vice president position on May 9, Simek is a member of the museum’s senior leadership team. Previously, Simek was the museum’s grants manager from 2021 to 2023, managing the museum’s important relationships with foundations and other grant-making organizations.

An experienced resource development professional, Simek previously has served in grant management and fundraising roles at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Museum and the Indiana Historical Society, and in alumni relations at Oakland University in Rochester, Michigan, and the Purdue Alumni Association. A military spouse, she previously managed a veteran education and employment project at Purdue University’s Military Family Research Institute.

Simek is author of a book about development strategies for smaller nonprofits: Beyond the Bake Sale: Fundraising for Local History Organizations, published by Rowman & Littlefield in 2022. She currently serves on the American Association for State and Local History’s book series editorial board.

“Jamie Simek is an incredible asset to the Eiteljorg and will work directly with me in advancing the museum’s mission and goals as we plan exciting future exhibits, events and partnerships that will engage the public at all levels. She literally wrote the book on fundraising, and will help us to build a culture of philanthropy throughout the organization,” Eiteljorg President and CEO Kathryn Haigh said.

“The Eiteljorg Museum is a special place, and I am excited about the opportunity to work more closely with our donors, members, visitors, artists and partners. Our mission is unique in Indianapolis, and there are tremendous opportunities inside the museum’s walls and outside in the larger community. The people we work with are truly exceptional and inspirational,” Simek said.

Simek is an alumna of Purdue University, where she earned her master’s degree in higher education administration and bachelor’s degree in athletic training. She also completed studies at the Fund Raising School at Indiana University’s Lilly Family School of Philanthropy, and through the Southern California Center for Nonprofit Management.

As parents to two teenagers – one in college and the other in high school – Simek and her husband are active in their home community of Plainfield, and she has served for many years as a member of the National Society Daughters of the American Revolution. The Simeks also co-own a local business, UNITS Moving and Portable Storage of Indianapolis.

Simek succeeds Nataly Lowder, who left the Eiteljorg in April after serving for nearly eight years, first as vice president for advancement and later as executive vice president and chief advancement officer. A former professional ballet dancer, Lowder returned to the performing arts world; she has joined the Indiana Repertory Theatre as its director of development.

About the Eiteljorg
A cultural pillar for 35 years in downtown Indianapolis’ scenic White River State Park, the Eiteljorg Museum seeks to inspire an appreciation and understanding of the arts, histories and cultures of the Native peoples of North America and the diverse peoples of the American West by telling amazing stories. Located on the Central Canal at 500 West Washington St., the Eiteljorg is a 501c3 nonprofit organization.

Image caption
File image of Jamie Simek, vice president for advancement of the Eiteljorg Museum. Image courtesy of the Eiteljorg Museum.

Media Contacts
Bryan Corbin
Public Relations Manager

Bert Beiswanger
Director of Marketing and Communications

Brooke Sullivan
Digital Marketing Manager