You're a lifetime member of the DU community from the moment you begin your journey here. With a network of more than 28,000 alumni (over 10,000 of whom live along the Front Range!), you'll have extensive opportunities for ongoing connections.
We maintain regional offices across the United States to provide alumni with a variety of professional development and community-building resources. Whether you're looking to expand your professional network, stay in touch with fellow graduates or give back to DU, our alumni community offers a culture of support you can rely on for the rest of your life.
We offer ample opportunities for alumni to make connections with each other, current students and members of the greater DU community. Our Dine and Dialogues program offers alumni the chance to take part in mutually beneficial conversations with current students. The Pioneering Denver series connects you with other local alumni and community members. Contact us to participate in these programs or learn what other opportunities fit your needs.
Through large events and one-on-one meetings organized by our regional offices, DU alumni from San Diego to Chicago to New York City are able to make lasting friendships and expand their professional networks.
Are you in the Denver area? Connect with other alumni while you enjoy a wide variety of family-friendly social events, including Alumni Night at a Rockies game and DU Night at Zoo Lights.
The Alumni Advisory Council is made up of alumni from across the nation along with an annually elected student senator and CAHSS faculty member. The Council meets throughout the year to offer experience, expertise and energy to lead and improve our students' creative and liberal arts education. For more information about the Advisory Council or its committees, please contact Erin Dietrich at 303-871-3283 or email her using the link below.
We're sustained by the generosity of our alumni community. Alumni contributions allow us to support the people, programs and campus that are at the heart of what we care about most. We're thrilled to have alumni who show pride in their school and who participate in our work. Your generosity ensures that we're able to continue providing an outstanding educational experience.
CAHSS Alumni Council
Kierra Aiello (BA '17, Art History and Music, MA ’17 Art History) Denver, CO
Kierra Aiello attended the University of Denver after completing high school in Grand Junction, Colorado. Undergraduate degrees in both music and art history, as well as a semester abroad in France, prepared her for careers in the art community in Denver. She continued on at DU to complete the 5 year master's program in art history with a museum studies concentration, writing her thesis on jewelry by artists.
Currently, Kierra works at The Denver Art Museum as well as Art Restart at The Gathering Place where she works in communications and development. She continues to play cello in small groups and attends a variety of concerts and cultural activities while still participating in traditional Colorado activities such as hiking and biking.
Lauren Braud (BA '03, Psychology) Denver, CO
Lauren Braud has remained active in the DU community since before starting her undergraduate student experience in 1999. From attending the prospective student program over 20 years ago, through her time as a (very busy) undergrad, her job role as Admission Counselor Support in 2003, and as a Hyde interviewer for 11 years and a Daniels Secondary Admission interviewer for five years, Lauren has continued to be proudly involved with the University of Denver alumni and student communities.
Andy Clayton (BA '94, Mass Communication; MA ’96 Public Relations) New York, NY
Andy Clayton is the deputy managing editor, digital sports for the New York Daily News. The former sports editor of the DU Clarion first joined the Daily News sports staff in 2003 and over the last decade-plus has led the digital effort for one of the nation's leading newspaper websites. From the World Series to Super Bowls and everything in between, Clayton has had a front-row seat (well, sitting at a computer in a Manhattan newsroom) to the world's biggest sporting events.
Clayton is a life-long Pioneer as his parents earned graduate degrees from DU and both later taught at the University. He even met his wife at DU. After working as a graduate assistant in the sports information department, Clayton began his new media career as a sports editor for the Denver-based dot-com publishing startup, InfoBeat. He is a member of the Associated Press Sports Editors and the Society of Professional Journalists. Andy and his wife, Sarah, live in Beacon, New York.
Doug Caskey (BA '80, Theatre) Denver, CO
Biography coming soon.
Chelsea Harris (BA '06, Political Science & English) Denver, CO
Chelsea Harris is a fifth generation Colorado native who attended Graland Country Day School and Colorado Academy. She is a graduate of the University of Denver and holds a Masters in Education, Principal Certification and Real Estate Licensure. Harris has over 14 years of experience in teaching, educational leadership and non-profit management. In 2015, she launched Leaps and Bounds, a non-profit organization centered around inner city youth with the mission to address the broad achievement gap for minorities and low income children. In 2017, Ms. Harris wrote two children’s books that focused on children of color, Amira and The Kitchen and is currently developing a Juneteenth curriculum with emphasis on African-American history.
Lisa Helling, JD (BA '77, Foreign Language & Literature; JD '80, Sturm College of Law) Denver, CO
Lisa Helling, JD, recently retired as Executive Director of the Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board in the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs of the U.S. Department of State in Washington, DC. Prior to assuming this position, she was Counselor for Public Affairs at the U.S. Embassy in Warsaw, Poland from 2009–2012. From 2008–2009 she held the position of Deputy Director in the Office of Press and Public Diplomacy in the Bureau of European and Eurasian Affairs. Prior to her Washington assignment she was posted at the U.S. Consulate General in São Paulo, Brazil as Public Affairs Officer. Since joining the U.S. Information Agency in 1990, her assignments have included Cultural Center Director in Warsaw, Poland, Public Affairs Officer in Vilnius, Lithuania, Country Affairs Officer for Public Diplomacy for the Caucasus and Central Asia, and Press Attaché in Prague, Czech Republic. A native of Denver, Colorado, she holds a Juris Doctor from the University of Denver Sturm College of Law (JD’80), and a B.A., summa cum laude in foreign languages and literatures, also from the University of Denver (1977). Her foreign languages include Polish, Portuguese, Czech, Lithuanian and French.
Alfredo Hernandez (BA '88, Political Science & Philosophy, JD ’93) Denver, CO
Biography coming soon.
Jill Krug (BA '94, Russian & Mass Communications) Denver, CO
A lifelong Pioneer, Jill (Pommrehn) Krug spent a year studying history and teaching English in Minks, Belarus after graduating from the University of Denver. It was a life-changing year abroad since Belarus was in the midst of political turmoil and struggling to find its own identity after the break-up of the Soviet Union.
Upon returning to the US, Krug would go on to earn her Master’s in Slavic Languages and Literature from the University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill. It was another eye-opening experience for the lifelong DU hockey fan. Her new school had a football team and no hockey.
Krug returned to the University of Denver a few years later as employee, taking a job at DU’s English Language Center as the Operations Manager and Designated Signatory Officer (DSO). This is where her career in immigration began. She worked with students from all over the world and realized that immigration and helping people come to the US to fulfill their dreams is what she wanted to do.
After several years, Krug moved to the University of Colorado at Denver where she was able to help a larger population of international students and scholars. After several years, she was recruited by Ciber, Inc., an IT consulting firm based in the Denver Tech Center, to do immigration work. Through it all, her background with study abroad, language skills and ability to community with people whose English skills may not be as good as they should be, have been her greatest assets.
Outside of work, Krug is the leader of a Girl Scout troop consisting of 12 girls from 3rd to 6th grade. A girl scout since elementary school, she loves to share her experiences with the next generation.
The University of Denver remains in Krug’s blood. She and her husband Kevin (BA ’94 Journalism Studies and Public Policy) have two children – Peter, age 12, and Alexa, age 9. The family spends a great deal of time on campus where Peter plays Jr. Pioneer Hockey (Peewee AA) and Alexa takes gymnastics lesson. The family has season hockey, volleyball, basketball and gymnastics tickets. Krug even writes the newsletter for the Pioneer gymnastics team.
Cheyenne Michaels (BA '14, Strategic Communication And Theatre) Denver, CO
Cheyenne Michaels grew up in Louisville, CO and is a graduate of Monarch High School. She attended the University of Denver and received a BA in Strategic Communications, a BA in Theatre and a minor in Marketing, graduating summa cum laude and a member of Phi Beta Kappa.
While at DU, she was Marketing Chair ('12) and President ('14) of the DU Drama Ensemble, President of the Alpha Lambda Delta Honor Society, a member of the DU Programming Board, an 1864 Tour Guide for the Office of Admissions and a Social Media Manager for the Daniels College of Business.
After graduating, Cheyenne was selected as Graphic Design & Marketing Apprentice for the 2014-15 apprentice class at Studio Theatre in Washington, DC. She was then hired as the full-time Graphic Design & Content Manager for Round House Theatre in Bethesda. During her time in DC, she volunteered as the Events & Communications Coordinator for the DC chapter of Phi Beta Kappa. In 2016, Cheyenne was hired as Marketing Coordinator for the Denver Center for the Performing Arts Theatre Company and in January 2018, was promoted to Marketing Associate. She now lives in Denver and spends her free time singing with the Denver Women's Chorus and spoiling her cat, Mouse.
Amy Nisenson (BA '90, Mass Communication & English) Seattle, WA
Amy Nisenson is a vice president of sales for Effectv, the data-driven, media sales division of Comcast Advertising. She's a creative- and results-oriented leader with expertise in advanced advertising, brand management and driving results during times of change. Before joining Effectv, Amy worked for Tegna/Gannett Media, CBS Television and Tribune Media in a variety of leadership roles related to media sales and research. In addition to her professional work, Amy currently serves as a commissioner on the Seattle Sports Commission, vice president of the Alumni Council for the College of Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences at the University of Denver (DU) and is the retired board chair of the childhood literacy organization, Book Trust.
She's a frequent guest speaker at different colleges and universities, including Drexel University and her alma mater, DU. Speaking with college students about her experience in “failing forward” (and why creating and managing a personal brand is important!) gives her a tremendous sense of purpose. Amy has a passion for making DE&I part of our everyday ecosystems at work and in our communities. She does this as a member of the Ally Network at Comcast. She's also a member of the OUT @ Comcast Employee Resource Group and The Women’s Network Employee Resource Group. Personally, she supports numerous organizations with time and/or treasure, namely The Trevor Project, Stolen Youth, Bunker Labs-Seattle and Alice’s Kids. Amy recently established a leadership grant program within DU's College of Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences to incentivize students to pursue leadership roles inside of student and academic organizations. Supporting new and emerging leaders at the collegiate level is her way of “paying it forward” in honor of the support she received when she was a student.
Amy moved to Kirkland, Washington from Denver, Colorado in 2019 with her husband Kyle and their very spoiled black lab, Angus. Her son, Nicholas, is a recent graduate of the University of Colorado-Boulder and a current HR professional. Her daughter, Elizabeth, is a chemistry and food science major at Colorado State University. Amy enjoys travel, great wine and good friends. She’s a fan of all sports, but especially Division I College Hockey and WNBA/NBA Basketball. Years ago, she was a nationally ranked poker player, but currently feeds her competitive spirit by trying to improve her tragically sad game of golf.
Jason Reuter (MA '13, Economics) Denver, CO – Vice President
Jason received a BA in Economics, magna cum laude, in 1996 from Northern Illinois University and a MA in Economics from the University of Denver in 2013. He has also earned the right to use the CFA designation from the CFA Institute and is a member of the CFA Society of Colorado.
His career has been focused on institutional investment management having worked for three different Investment Management firms. Jason’s investment management career started at the Vanguard Group in Malvern, PA in 1998. He had roles in Fund Accounting, Portfolio Review Department and Legal where he served as an Investment Analyst to the Legal Division. In 2005, Jason moved to Colorado and worked at OppenheimerFunds Inc. where he was the Head of Derivative Operations, provided derivatives guidance to various investment strategies, was a member of the Counterparty Review Committee and participated in the Investment Risk Management Committee.
In 2010, his division was sold to Brown Brothers Harriman & Co and was established as its Denver office. At Brown Brothers Harriman, Jason has served as the Global Head of Derivative Operations and most recently as a Product Executive within its Investment Operations – Fintech division where he works with institutional investors in designing financial technology tools to apply to the institutional investment management process. He also provides thought leadership on institutional investment management topics to internal clients.
Jason has served on the board of several non-profit organizations where he has contributed to various working committees of educational and social service organizations. He has served on the Executive Committee in addition to Budget and Finance and Chaired the Investment Committee as well as the Real Estate Finance Committee.
Among his professional interests, Jason is passionate about economics, investing, mentoring, governance topics, innovation, endowment management, strategy and research. He is married to Deborah and has two daughters, Keira and Jocelyn. Jason and his family live in Longmont, CO.
Linda Rockwood (BA '72, Economics) Denver, CO - President
Linda Rockwood is a former partner, recently retired from the law firm Faegre Baker Daniels (now Faegre Drinker) after practicing more than thirty years as an environmental lawyer in Denver.
After graduating from the University of Denver, Linda was an economist with May Department Stores in St. Louis, the Assistant Director of the Center for the Study of American Business at Washington University in St. Louis and then the Manager of the Mid-Columbia Symphony Orchestra in Washington state.
Linda graduated from the University of Texas Law School in 1984. She returned to Denver to begin her law practice focusing on environmental law, chosen because of its convergence of law, economics, science and public policy. Her practice emphasized air quality matters and historic waste site cleanups across the county for a wide range of national corporate clients. Linda is a member of the American College of Environmental Lawyers and has been recognized in Chambers, Best Lawyers, Super Lawyers and the Denver Business Journal.
Linda’s support and enthusiasm for the University of Denver has continued since her time there as an undergraduate. Linda and her husband, Jeff, now split time between Denver and Ponte Vedra, Florida. Both are strong supporters of DU – and super hockey and lacrosse fans – and are excited about the many new projects and programs at the University.
Ellie Schafer (BA '90, Mass Communication) San Francisco, CA
The White House is known as “The People’s House,” and since 2009, Ellie Schafer has made that sobriquet truer than ever before for millions of guests. As Director of the White House Visitors Office and Special Assistant to President Barack Obama, Schafer has helped transform how guests perceive and experience 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. From private VIP visits to the sprawling Easter Egg Roll that draws 35,000 children and parents to the South Lawn, Schafer has managed more than 1500 events during her tenure. More importantly, she has restored the White House as a place that is fascinating, educational and fun to visit.
In her almost 20 years in the workforce, Schafer has worked both at the White House and with everyday members of the American public. She has been as comfortable serving such clients as Barack and Michelle Obama, Bill Clinton, Al and Tipper Gore, and His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama as she has been working with students visiting the White House’s organic garden to learn about healthy eating or Iowa farmers campaigning for President Obama. Throughout, she has established a documented record of success in helping shape public opinion toward individuals and institutions.
At the White House Visitors Office, Schafer oversees a staff of eight and more than 1,000 volunteers. Besides the well-known Easter Egg Roll, National Tree Lighting Ceremony and Garden Tours, she handles Holiday Open Houses, White House tour services for 535 Senators and Representatives, and State Arrival Ceremonies for world leaders from such nations as India, Mexico and France. She also plays a key role in July 4th festivities, Halloween trick-or-treating at the White House and other large events.
But it is Schafer’s strategic role that has transformed how the public interacts with and views the White House. She has streamlined the White House Tour System — logistics, security checks, communications and so on — to make it more efficient, expeditious and friendly without sacrificing security. For example, she instituted programs such as the Monthly Member Pass for Members of Congress and developed a Boarding Pass for visits to the White House. She has consulted with Buckingham Palace and the FBI to make their tour programs more open and accessible to the public. She also works closely with the United States Secret Service to ensure that increased access never jeopardizes the safety and security of the First Family or their guests.
Prior to her role in the Visitors Office, Schafer worked in senior positions on the advance staff for the Obama presidential campaign. She managed logistics for such campaign trips as the Democratic National Convention and Super Tuesday. In 2006, she accompanied then-U.S. Senator Obama on tour promoting his book, “The Audacity of Hope.’’ Months later, when Senator Obama announced his candidacy for President of the United States, Schafer was on his team from day one, and was tapped to serve the 44th President of the United States at the White House.
Schafer’s political career took root in 1995, when she developed her own political consultancy, focusing on advance and logistical work for political campaigns, foundations, and national and world leaders. Her clients included the Dalai Lama, Heinz Family Philanthropies, The California Endowment, John Kerry for President, Former President Bill Clinton, and Former Vice Presidential Couple Tipper and Al Gore.
Among many honors, in 2013 Schafer was selected to the inaugural class of President Obama’s Leadership Academy and was enlisted as a mentor for First Lady Michelle Obama’s Mentoring and Leadership program. The latter gives 20 local high school girls access to senior female leadership in the White House and is designed to inspire them and help them achieve their dreams.
In 2014, Schafer was profiled in Capitol File Magazine’s, “Women Who Wow” and in 2010, Out Magazine named Schafer as, “one of the 100 most influential men and women who inspired, shaped and changed the world.” She was also the keynote speaker at the University of Denver’s Homecoming weekend.
Lindsay Smart, PhD (MA '06, Clinical Psychology; PhD '09, Clinical Psychology) Albuquerque, NM
Lindsay Smart, PhD, is an associate professor and licensed clinical psychologist in the University of New Mexico School of Medicine Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences. In addition, she is the associate vice chancellor for leadership and faculty equity & inclusion in the University of New Mexico Health Sciences Center Office for Diversity, Equity & Inclusion. She leads initiatives that promote diversity, equity and inclusion among faculty, students and staff within the UNM Health Sciences Center. She is also the training director for the American Psychological Association (APA) Accredited Clinical Psychology Internship Training Program at UNM HSC and provides clinical services to UNM student-athletes. Smart received her BA in psychology at the University of Portland and her MA and PhD in clinical psychology from the University of Denver. During her time as a graduate student at the University of Denver, Smart was a fellow in the American Psychological Association Minority Fellowship Program. Smart completed her Pre-Doctoral Clinical Psychology internship in New Mexico at the UNM HSC and her post-doctoral training was completed with the UNM Division of Community Behavioral Health.
Vincent Szilagyi (BA '13, History) Denver, CO
Vincent Szilagyi is a political consultant and strategist specializing in campaign strategies, logistics, data analysis and effective political problem solving. He is the owner and partner at Saratoga Strategies, a Denver-based political consulting firm focusing on center and right-of-center politics.
Szilagyi is a graduate of the University of Denver where he majored in History, Political Science and Geography and met his wife Taylor. He is a member of the Board of Directors of the Rocky Mountain Map Society and an avid map collector. He lives with his wife in Centennial, Colorado.
Megan Williams (BA '07, Journalism & English) Denver, CO
Megan Williams is a Continuous Improvement Specialist with the nationally-renowned Denver Peak Academy at the City and County of Denver. She has coached over 146 staff across 27 agencies in process improvement efforts resulting in $2.5M identified tax dollar savings. Using her skills as a master relationship builder and action inciter, she works to transform local government to center those it has traditionally marginalized. She has been awarded the Colorado City and County Managers Association Trailblazer Award for her contributions to building an inclusive and diverse workforce in local government, and the University of Denver Women’s Coalition Robin Morgan Outstanding Woman Alumna Award for supporting an empowering environment for women at DU. In 2018, she initiated and implemented a paid family leave policy in a historically conservative municipal organization. In 2019, she created the first ever Colorado Women Leading Government Conference to build support systems and skills for women who want to pursue leadership positions in government. In 2020, she created the Lady Power Podcast Club to further skill and network building for women. And in 2021, she led a rapid improvement to increase equity in the city’s grantmaking process for the Office of Children’s Affairs, a pilot that could be expanded to all city grantmaking. She believes impossible is just an opinion, and that we are more powerful when we work together for lasting change.