Songwriter and Composer Jimmy Dunne Named Inaugural University Director of Traditions | Newsroom | #students | #parents


Award-winning songwriter, composer, and entrepreneur Jimmy Dunne will be joining the
Pepperdine University community in the newly established position of University director
of traditions. In this role, Dunne will be tasked with enhancing the University’s
many traditional events, including Founder’s Day, and helping create new traditions
that will further community members’ sense of unity and strengthen Waves pride. The
director will collaborate with individuals across the organization, including those
from Pepperdine’s five schools, Student Affairs, Athletics, Community Belonging, University
Events, Integrated Marketing Communications, and other areas of University leadership. 

“As we execute a vision in line with the University’s 2030 strategic plan, Pepperdine
is passionately committed to strengthening campus life and continuously improving
our many cherished student experiences,” said president Jim Gash. “We’re honored to
have Jimmy Dunne officially join our Waves family, bringing his creative and producing
talents to our traditions, culture, and events.”

With vast experience in both the worlds of art and business, Dunne has written countless
songs for some of today’s most popular artists. His songs have been recorded on 28,000,000
hit records worldwide, along with scores, songs, and themes in over 1,500 television
episodes and dozens of feature films. Throughout his esteemed career, he has received
Grammy Award and Emmy Award nominations, Billboard Music Awards, and Country Music
Awards, and his songs have garnered gold, platinum, and multi-platinum records from
countries spanning the globe.

Credits include songs for Whitney Houston, Kenny Rogers, Pretty Woman, Take 6 (a Grammy-winning record), Janet Jackson, Loverboy, Princess Diaries II, Nothing in Common, Jermaine Jackson, Anne Murray, Fame, Dave Loggins, Dear God, ABC’s Wide World of Sports, NBC Sports, and Mother’s Day. He has also composed official songs of the Olympic Games, presidential campaigns,
and numerous alma maters and fight songs for leading universities.

Beyond his song credits, Dunne has produced a number of large-scale events for businesses
and nonprofit organizations and is attuned to the many elements of what makes an event
successful and memorable. Last year, Dunne contributed to the creation of the University’s
new “Lighting of the Lantern” tradition, a feature of the Founder’s Day ceremony in
which a student from each of the University’s schools joins together in bringing forth
a light of knowledge, purpose, and faith. 

“Jimmy has a deep affinity for Pepperdine and has already made a tremendous impact
on the University community writing a new alma mater, “We Will Climb”; reimagining
our fight song; and creating a Pepperdine songbook library with dozens of musical
compositions,” said Sean Burnett, senior vice president for integrated marketing communications
and chief marketing officer. “I look forward to the indelible impact his vision and
experience will bring to the Pepperdine family in the years ahead.”



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