Office of Development and Alumni Engagement

Jeff Ulmer


Vice President for Development and Alumni Engagement

In April 2014, Jeff became vice president for development and alumni engagement. He joined Stetson from the University of Central Florida, where he served as assistant vice president overseeing fundraising at multiple academic colleges. Prior to that, he was responsible for setting the strategic direction for UCF’s Athletic Development Program.

In his role at Stetson, Jeff provides strategic vision, focus and direction for Stetson’s development and alumni engagement efforts. He also provides innovative leadership in annual and comprehensive campaigns, corporate and foundation relations, planned giving, major gifts, donor relations and stewardship, and prospect research and management.

Prior to working at UCF, Jeff was president of the University of Mississippi Athletics Association Foundation, executive director of development for athletics and the National Commodore Club at Vanderbilt University, and assistant dean for development and alumni relations at Vanderbilt University Law School. He also worked in development for the University of Florida’s Warrington College of Business, Fredric G. Levin College of Law, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, and College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. A 1985 graduate of the University of Florida, Jeff is a former assistant strength and conditioning coach for the National Football League’s Tampa Bay Buccaneers.


Amy Gipson


Associate Vice President, Development Strategy and Communications

Amy leads Stetson’s philanthropy efforts as they pertain to sustainable giving and donor relations, special campaigns, and initiatives that engage donors in the life of the university. As a member of the development senior leadership team, Amy collaborates with colleagues – particularly faculty leadership and staff in Alumni Engagement, Admissions and Student Financial Planning, Student Affairs, Marketing, and Career Development – to instill a mission- and values-driven culture of philanthropy across the university’s four campuses.

In this role, Amy and her team focus their efforts on developing and implementing data-driven strategies, tied to the university’s goals, that allow donors to make the impact they want to make – whether it’s through funding scholarships, academic programs or student-life experiences that change students’ lives and set them on a path of significance. Amy and her team use a mix of communication tools to tell stories that encourage ongoing support and share the value of these investments.

A creative strategist with more than 20 years of experience in higher education, Amy previously served as vice president for marketing and communications at Stephens College for nearly seven years before joining Stetson in November 2012. In her 17 years at Stephens, a Missouri women’s college founded in 1833, she helped institute a turnaround marked by increased enrollment, enhanced public relations and partnerships, and revitalized academic and student programs. She led the creative direction of recruitment and fundraising campaigns, oversaw the 2007 comprehensive re-accreditation report and visit, served as college spokesperson, and chaired the 175th Anniversary committee.

She and her husband, Jason, live in DeLand with their two daughters. A graduate of the University of Missouri School of Journalism, she is currently pursuing an MBA at Stetson.


Cheryl Stadtler

media/stadtler-c.jpgDirector of Research and Prospect Strategy

Cheryl works with the Development team to help engage the university’s alumni, donors and friends in establishing lifelong relationships with Stetson. Using biographical and demographic research, she collaborates on strategies that support the fundraising initiatives of the university.

A graduate of the University of Central Florida, Cheryl has been with Stetson since 2011 after more than 20 years in automotive office management. She and her husband are the parents of two children and one dog, and are active with their church.


Melanie Laboy

Executive Assistant for the Vice President of Development and Alumni Engagement


Joanne Bigley

media/bigley-joanne.jpgResearch and Prospect Strategy Assistant

Joanne provides administrative support to the special advisor to the president for philanthropy and assists in managing her fundraising portfolio. She schedules the special advisor’s visits with alumni and drafts correspondence, proposals and reports. Joanne also assists the president in scheduling some of her visits with alumni.

Joanne came to Stetson in 1990 and has held various administrative support positions with increasing responsibility within the Office of Development and Alumni Engagement.


Sharon Hamil

media/hamil-s.jpgSenior Administrative Secretary

Sharon serves as the senior administrative secretary for the special advisor to the president and the major gift officers. In this capacity, she utilizes the university database to retrieve lists and prepare materials for use by the president and special advisor prior to donor visits. She also prepares trip itineraries and makes airline and hotel reservations for the special advisor. Sharon is responsible for transcribing reports and letters and for drafting correspondence and acknowledgment letters and data entry of information into the Banner record. Sharon maintains the special advisor’s budget records and monthly budget reports, as well as preparing expense reports for the major gift officers.

Prior to joining Stetson’s staff in 2004, Sharon worked 11 years for a local CPA. She lives in DeBary and has three children, five grandchildren, and four step-grandchildren.