Meet Our Institutional Relations


Stacy McKay Benander

Director of Strategic Engagement

Based in the Pittsburgh area, Stacy is a veteran of the international education field. Prior to joining CAPA, she served for 15 years as the Founder and President of Athena Study Abroad. She received the Enlightened Employer Award at the Women in International Education (WIE) Awards in Berlin, Germany, has been named twice to the Forty Under 40 list for business professionals (in both Columbus, Ohio, and Western Pennsylvania), and she was named the recipient of NAFSA Region VI's esteemed Leo Dowling Award of Excellence.

Stacy served as a Founding Executive Team Member of the women's leadership and advocacy group the Global Leadership League, has served on NAFSA's Trainer Corps, and was a founding member of the Global Learning Collective. She has also served as the Director of the International Office at Ohio Dominican University, and was an International Student and Scholar Advisor at The Ohio State University.

Stacy earned her MA degree in Educational Policy and Leadership (Social and Cultural Foundations) from The Ohio State University, and her BA degree as a double-major in Spanish and Communications/Public Relations from John Carroll University. She lives on a 5 acre farmette with her husband, son, cats, dog, chickens, and ducks. If you ever need any organic eggs, she’s your gal!

Stacy Benander Headshot Travel

Fun Facts:

  • Founded and ran the study abroad organization Athena Study Abroad for 15 years
  • Studied abroad twice in Spain, as well as in Bogotá, Colombia
  • Lives on a 5-acre farmette with her husband, son, dogs, cats, chickens and ducks
  • Other than her family, her three main loves are The Golden Girls, Tommy Lee Jones, and The Smashing Pumpkins