Strategic Communications & Advancement

The Office of Strategic Communications & Advancement works with college and campus partners to engage alumni and friends, showcase the great work of students, faculty and staff through print and digital platforms, and advance the Wisconsin liberal arts experience. Please contact our partners at university communications if you are a member of the media.  


Denise Hickey, Assistant Dean of Strategic Communications and Advancement
Phone: (608) 890-1153
Office: 403 South Hall

Mary Ellen Gabriel, Director of Communications
Phone: (608) 890-0931
Office: 405 South Hall

Alissa Karnaky, Director of Alumni & Donor Engagement
Phone: (608) 890-0087
Office: 404 South Hall

Katie Vaughn, Senior University Relations Specialist
Phone: (608) 890-1220
Office: 401 South Hall


The Communications arm of the Office of Strategic Communications & Advancement is led by Director of Communications Mary Ellen Gabriel. The Communications Team seeks to keep alumni and friends aware of news and information from the College of Letters & Science through the College's website, the L&S Annual Report, the Sift & Winnow e-newsletter, departmental newsletters, social media, and campus-level publications.

Communications Resources for Departments:

Campus partners:

Alumni Relations

The Advancement Team keeps College of Letters & Science alumni connected to their alma mater.  We work with campus partners like the Wisconsin Alumni Association ( to host events that bring alumni to campus and campus to alumni across the nation


The Advancement Team works closely with the University of Wisconsin Foundation and the Wisconsin Alumni Association to develop and steward donors to the College.  Our efforts help maintain the standard of excellence represented by the College of Letters & Science and the University of Wisconsin-Madison.