Debra Mesch

Debra Mesch

Professor and Director of the Women' Philanthropy Institute
Professor of Public and Nonprofit Management
School of Public and Environmental Affairs
Office: BS 4060
Phone: 317-274-8635
Curriculum Vitae

Debra Mesch joined SPEA IUPUI in 1992. Prior to teaching at IUPUI, she taught at Simmons College and Northeastern University in Boston. Her research agenda focuses on gender and philanthropy, nonprofit management, giving and volunteering and human resource management.


  • Ph.D., Organizational Behavior/Human Resource Management, Kelley School of Business at Indiana University - Bloomington
  • M.B.A., Kelley School of Business at Indiana University - Bloomington
  • M.S., Vanderbilt University
  • B.S., University of Cincinnati

Professional experience and consultancies

  • United Way of Central Indiana
  • Goodwill Industries
  • Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Indiana

Professional affiliations

  • Association for Research on Nonprofit Organizations and Voluntary Action (ARNOVA)
  • Philanthropic Studies Faculty

Major fields of expertise

  • Managing diversity
  • Management of volunteers
  • Human resource management in public and nonprofit organizations
  • Executive compensation
  • Women's philanthropy

Intellectual contributions

  • Mesch, Debra J., Brown, M., Moore, Z., and Hayat, A. (In Press). Gender differences in charitable giving. International Journal of Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Marketing.
  • Mesch, Debra J., Moore, Z., & Wilhelm, M.O. (2010). Does Jewish philanthropy differ by sex and type of giving? NASHIM: A Journal of Jewish Women's Studies and Gender Issues, Fall (20), 80-96.
  • Mesch, Debra J. (2010). Management of Human Resources in 2020: The Outlook for Nonprofit Organizations. Public Administration Review, 70, Supplement 1, S173-174.
  • Mesch, Debra J. & Rooney, P.M. Determinants of compensation for fundraising professionals: A study of pay, performance and gender differences (2008). Nonprofit Management and Leadership, 18, 435-463.
  • Rooney, P.M., Brown, E., & Mesch, D.J. (2007). Who decides in giving to education? A study of charitable giving by married couples. International Journal of Educational Advancement, 7, 229-242.
  • Mesch, Debra .J., Rooney, P.M., Steinberg, K., & Denton, B. (2006). The Effects of Race, Gender, and Marital Status on Giving and Volunteering in Indiana. Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, 35, 565-587.
  • Perry, J.L., Mesch, D.J. & Paarlberg, L. (2006). Motivating employees in a new governance era: The performance paradigm revisited. Public Administration Review, 66, 505-514.
  • Rooney, P.M., Mesch, D.J., Chin, W., & Steinberg, K. (2005). The effects of race, gender, and survey methodology on giving in the U.S. Economics Letters, 86, 173-180.
  • Tschirhart, M., Mesch, Debra J., Perry, J.L., Miller, T.K. & Lee, G. (2001). Stipended volunteers: Their goals, experience, satisfaction, and likelihood of future service. Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, 30, 422-443.
  • Perry, J.L., Thomson, A., Tschirhart, M., Mesch, Debra J., Lee, G. (1999). Inside a Swiss-army knife: An assessment of AmeriCorps. Journal of Public Administration Research and Theory, 9, 225-250.
  • Mesch, Debra J., Tschirhart, M., Perry, J.L. Lee, G. (1998). Altruists or egoists; Retention in stipended service. Nonprofit Management & Leadership, 9, 3-21.

Courses taught

  • SPEA-V 443 Managing Workforce Diversity
  • SPEA-V 504 Public Organizations
  • SPEA-V 522 Human Resource Management for Nonprofit Organizations
  • Public Personnel Management
  • Management of Group and Individual Behavior


  • Director, Women's Philanthropy Institute (present)
  • Director, Public Affairs (2003-2008)
  • Chair, Philanthropic Studies Faculty
  • Board of Directors, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Indiana