Jennifer Gardner, who has more than 15 year of experience in both collegiate and professional athletics, joined the UC staff in October 2006. Originally an Assistant Athletic Director of Athletic Development, she was promoted to Associate Athletic Director in the summer of 2010.
Gardner serves as the fundraiser for scholarships and capital initiatives in the UCATS Office, in which she successfully solicited and met fundraising goals for such projects as the Sheakley Athletics Center. Additionally, she oversees the George Smith Society, which consists of donors who contribute $13,000 or more to athletics, and coordinates all hospitality programs, VIP events, customer service initiatives, retention efforts and benefits for high end donors.
Prior to her arrival at UC, Gardner spent seven seasons with the Cincinnati Reds as the director of premium sales and service. During her tenure, she developed a Founders Suite Program in which six companies contributed more than $7 million in luxury suite revenue three years prior to the ballpark opening. She was instrumental in setting a new Major League Baseball record of selling out 61 luxury suites in 37 days and saw a 75 percent sales increase of diamond, scout and club seating areas in six month's time. Gardner oversaw the sales and service of 600 premium accounts representing significant revenue for the team, while spearheading renewal initiatives and incentive programs for suite and season ticket holders.
Gardner also had a three-year stint as the Cincinnati Bengals assistant director of premium seat sales. She was a member of the sales team responsible for meeting the sales goals of luxury suites and club seats in order to move forward in the construction of Paul Brown Stadium. Her other notable achievements included the development of hospitality programming and events for premium seat holders and execution of VIP experiences at the Bengals training camp site in Georgetown, Ky.
A 1993 graduate of the University of Dayton, Gardner began her career at The Kempton Group, a sport and event marketing firm in Cincinnati, as an account service manager. She worked primarily with the 1996 U.S. Open Golf Championship, including the development of the hospitality program for General Motors' Delphi Automotive Systems on behalf of their participation in the championship.
Gardner earned her bachelor of arts in communication with an emphasis in broadcasting and public relations from UD before going on to pursue her master of arts in communication with an emphasis in organizational communication from Miami University (OH) in 1994.
She and her husband, Brian, have two children; Chloe and Sydney.