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One was plucked from another private Indiana college institution. The other was taken from a company that employed Brad Stevens over a decade ago.
Now, Claire Aigotti and Matthew Mindrum are in key administrative positions at Butler University.
On June 28, Aigotti was named Butler’s first-ever general counsel, and Mindrum was hired to be the university’s vice president of marketing and communications.
Aigotti was working as an associate general counsel at Notre Dame when Butler put out an open application for the position.
“When I saw the opportunity to be the first of something—and it was at Butler—I thought, ‘I want to go ahead and apply’,” Aigotti said. “(Butler is) such a beautiful place that it reminded me of Notre Dame.”
Butler President James Danko said money and concerns about outsourcing certain legal issues were two deciding factors in hiring the school’s first inside general counsel.
Danko said Butler spent an estimated $700,000 in legal fees during the 2011-2012 academic year. He hopes this staff change will save “at least a third” of what the school has been spending.
Ben Hunter, chief of staff, headed the search committee for the position and said Aigotti stood out from a qualified applicant pool.
“We thought she would understand our university’s needs and our missions of higher education,” Hunter said.
Mindrum, meanwhile, fought through a field of more than 300 applicants to secure his new Butler position.
An Indiana University graduate, Mindrum was working as the marketing director of U.S. Alzheimer’s Products for Eli Lilly before he decided to apply for the open position at Butler.
He said he expressed a desire to get into a marketing role in higher education or the arts about nine to 12 months ago.
“I still think we have a bit of a blank canvas when it comes to what’s the story we want to tell,” Mindrum said. “That’s an exciting thing: when people know who Butler is, but they are waiting for someone to tell them what Butler is.”
Associate marketing professor Richard Fetter, who led the search committee for the position, said the committee was looking for a leader, follower and team player.
Danko said he feels Mindrum’s role is to help the university manage its reputation and communicate effectively with Butler’s stakeholders, and he feels the school made a good hire.
“What stood out were his strategic abilities (and) the way he articulates things,” Danko said. “He really just hit it out of the park.”