Executive Director

Michael Cunningham HeadshotAs Executive Director of its North American Office, Michael G. Cunningham oversees the University of Oxford’s fundraising, special events, and alumni relations efforts in the United States and Canada.  He concurrently holds the position of President of Oxford University Development North America, Inc., (OUDNA) a not-for-profit company wholly-owned by the University.  He began his tenure at Oxford in 1992, serving as Director of Leadership Gifts, before being named head of the office in 2002.

In addition to his fundraising and alumni relations duties, Michael interacts extensively with the University’s primary charitable entity in the United States: Americans for Oxford, Inc. (AFO).  He also collaborates with representatives of the thirty-nine constituent colleges of the University and related institutions including the Rhodes Trust.

Before joining Oxford’s North American Office, Michael held a number of fundraising positions at New York University and Fordham University. 




Deputy Director

Sheila Barrett headshot Nov 2021

Sheila Vera Barrett serves as the North American Office's Deputy Director. Sheila joined the North American Office in 2015 as Director of Foundation Relations, a role she continues to hold alongside her Deputy Director status.

Sheila received a BA in Psychology summa cum laude from Harvard University, where she was also Phi Beta Kappa.  She went on to receive her JD cum laude from Harvard Law School, and began her professional life as a corporate lawyer at Cravath, Swaine and Moore LLP.  After working at other prestigious firms, Sheila shifted gears and began taking on key volunteer leadership roles in fundraising campaigns for Harvard University, Harvard Law School, the Brick Church School, and the American Museum of Natural History. 



The North American Office team