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Winnipeg Free Press | 21Jun2012 | Mia Rabson

CMHR's fundraising CEO steps down after one year

The CEO of the fundraising arm for the Canadian Museum for Human Rights is leaving the post just a year after assuming the role.

Dav Cvitkovic began as the CEO of Friends of the Canadian Museum for Human Rights July 4, 2011. Late Wednesday night, board chair John Stefaniuk wrote to donors and others connected with the museum informing them of her departure.

"We have appreciated the contributions that Dav has made to Friends and wish her every success in her future endeavours," Stefaniuk wrote in an email.

He said Susan Graham, the director of development for Friends of the Canadian Museum for Human Rights, will take over the role of CEO on an interim basis.

Gail Asper, who has spearheaded the project from the start from an idea begun by her late father, Izzy Asper, remains as the national campaign chair.

The museum was to open in 2013 but a ballooning capital budget has set the project off its schedule. When Cvitkovic took over, it was believed she needed to oversee raising about $25 million more for the capital campaign, and start working on a $50 million endowment.

However the price tag of the museum went from $310 million to more than $350 million and the amount Friends needed to raise more than doubled.

Cvitkovic was hailed as one of the best professional fundraisers in the field when she was hired. She was the brains behind the Canadian Arthritis Society's "Joints in Motion" campaign, one of Canada's most successful fundraising campaigns ever.

She has also held positions at SImon Fraser University in Vancouver, Royal Roads University in Victoria and just prior to her arrival in Winnipeg, at Holy Names University in Oakland, California.