RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK – The Research Triangle Foundation has added Kristie Van Auken jto its leadership team as the vice president of stakeholder engagement.

“We are delighted to welcome Kristie to the Foundation team,” said Scott Levitan, CEO of the Research Triangle Foundation of North Carolina.  “She has the experience and reputation we were seeking to enhance key relationships and build new ones with companies in the Research Triangle Park, our university partners, and with regional leaders. We can’t wait for her to get started.”

Levitan began his role as president and CEO in the summer of 2017.

The Research Triangle Park logo - RTP, NCVan Auken began her role this week.  VanAuken joins the RTF  from the Raleigh-Durham Airport Authority, where she served as the vice president of communications and community affairs.  Prior to that role, VanAuken worked for airports and economic development agencies in the greater Akron, Ohio region in roles responsible for strategic and community partnerships.  During the 15 years Van Auken worked for the Akron-Canton Airport (CAK), passenger traffic tripled, reaching 1.6 million passengers per year by 2010.

According to the Foundation, Van Auken’s role will also encompass marketing and communications and the story of Research Triangle Park.  She is expected to help differentiate and reinforce RTP as a leader in creating and cultivating science and technology parks, lead and staff the RTP owners and tenants association, administer the RTP special tax district and coordinate its activities with the governing Durham and Wake counties.  She also  will supervise the STEM in the Park program manager and team.

Van Auken joins the team shortly after the Foundation  announced a deal with a Maryland-based developer, Willard Retail, to build a new town center in the heart of Research Triangle Park.

Van Auken earned her bachelor’s degree from Austin College and her master’s degree in public administration from Western Michigan University.  She lives with her husband and two teenage children in Cary.