President Heckler participates actively on numerous national and regional higher education boards and commissions. Among his appointments:
- Chair of the board of Independent Colleges of Indiana
- Chair of the board of Indiana Campus Compact
- Co-Director of the Leadership Institute of the Association for Theatre in Higher Education
He serves on the board of the Private College 529 Plan, the NCAA Division I Horizon League, and the NCAA Pioneer League for non-scholarship football. He is also the former board chair of the New American Colleges and Universities.
He is a frequent invited speaker at national and international conferences and workshops, including recent presentations at the American Council on Education, the Association of Governing Boards, the Council of Independent Colleges, and the Lutheran Educational Conference of North America.
A past president of the Association for Theatre in Higher Education, President Heckler co-founded the association’s annual Leadership Institute and has fulfilled several leadership roles in the organization. He has served on the boards of a number of theatres, festivals and arts organizations.