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Office of Philanthropy

Our mission is to build and maintain a donor base that will make a difference in the lives of students, faculty and staff today and for the future. This enables the university to fulfill its educational mission by augmenting current budgets and building on the University's endowments.

Kris Phillips
Kris Phillips | Vice President for Alumni, Engagement and Philanthropy and Executive Director of the APSU Foundation
Kris returned to APSU, his alma mater (’91), in 2016 after a 16-year tenure at the University of Tennessee and the UT Health Science Center. In his role, he oversees the APSU Foundation, alumni relations and advancement and is responsible for all university engagement and fundraising activities. Kris and his wife, Tammy, have two sons, Brayden and Parker. Parker is also an Austin Peay graduate and a former Governors baseball player.
Vonda St. Amant
Vonda St. Amant | Assistant Executive Director of Philanthropy
Vonda is a 1983 graduate of APSU. After several years in non-profit fundraising, Vonda returned to her alma mater in 2010 and currently serves as the assistant executive director. In her role, Vonda oversees a dynamic development team and provides donor-focused leadership to help meet the strategic goals of the University.
Kimberly Adkison
Kimberly Adkison | Senior Director of Donor Relations and Stewardship
Kimberly is a Clarksville native and an APSU graduate with degrees in professional studies and management (BS ’06 and MS ’10). She serves as the director of donor relations and scholarships. Kimberly oversees stewardship management and scholarship compliance.
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Rebekah Bishop | Senior Director of Donor and Foundation Operations
Since 2004, Rebekah has worked in development services, prospect research, alumni relations, donor stewardship, annual giving and event planning in higher education in Tennessee and Florida. She holds a bachelor’s degree from King University (’03) and master’s degree from Boston University (’09). Rebekah oversees development services, prospect research and annual giving.
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Brady Dorris | Assistant Athletics Director for Development
Brady is from Greenbrier, Tennessee. He graduated from APSU in 2018 with a bachelor's degree in health and human performance with a concentration in education. He is a former Governors football player. Before returning to his alma mater as the assistant athletics director - development, he worked as a teacher for three years. Brady is excited to assist all APSU athletic programs moving forward.
Jerica Swiger
Jerica Swiger | Director of Development
Jerica Swiger has worked in the areas of arts, culture and development for several years with organizations such as Ohio Northern University, Eastern Michigan University and The Chicago Architecture Foundation. Jerica brings nearly 20 years of experience in all areas of non-profit and higher education management to APSU, where she assists the College of Arts and Letters, the College of Behavioral Health Sciences and the College of Graduate studies with membership development, programming, board development and fundraising. She holds a master’s degree in non-profit management with a concentration in human services and a bachelor’s degree in arts management with a minor in management.
Vacant | Director of Development
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Kara Allen | Prospect Researcher
Kara graduated from Minnesota State University in 2021 with a bachelor’s degree in communications studies and a minor in sociology. She spent her undergraduate career working in the university advancement office. In that role, she gained database experience and knowledge of fundraising activities. Kara and her husband moved to Clarksville when he was stationed at nearby Fort Campbell.

Payton Baggett
Payton Baggett | Alumni and Philanthropy Communications Specialist
Payton is a Clarksville native and an APSU graduate with degrees in journalism and marketing (BS ’14, MA ’17). She previously worked as a reporter for ClarksvilleNow.com and an AmeriCorps VISTA for the Clarksville-Montgomery County Education Foundation before returning to Austin Peay in 2018. She oversees press releases, email marketing, website content, social media and printed materials.
Ashley Puskas
Ashley Puskas | Office Supervisor and Assistant to the Vice President for Alumni, Engagement and Philanthropy
Ashley is a native of Dickson County and a second-generation alumna of Austin Peay. She earned her bachelor's degree in 2010. Thoughshe has a heart for earth sciences, her head is in business. Her husband Eddie graduated from the APSU Center at Fort Campbell in 2013. He is a veteran of the US Army. She is responsible for processing donations and overseeing day-to-day activities in the Advancement office. In her free time, she enjoys long walks outdoors, hunting and snuggling with her two dogs.
Kelley Board
Kelley Board | Donor Relations and Scholarship Coordinator
In 2001, Kelley earned her bachelor’s degree from the University of Tennessee in Knoxville with a major in psychology and a minor in sociology. She entered the arena of higher education in 2017 and worked her way to the assistant director of admissions role at Daymar College in Nashville, Tennessee, before coming to APSU. In her position, she works with stewardship and donor relations. Kelley has a six-year-old son, Richard Pardue III.
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Emily DeSpain | Philanthropy Operations Specialist
Emily earned her bachelor’s degree in communications with a concentration in public relations and a minor in psychology from Austin Peay in 2015. She worked as a social media marketer, event planner and administrative assistant before returning to work at her alma mater. In her role, Emily processes donations and is involved in the day-to-day office activities in the Advancement office.
Vacant | Data and Reporting Analyst
A military transplant, Larry made Clarksville his home after graduating high school. He went on to earn a bachelor's degree in professional studies from APSU in 2002, and now has worked at his alma mater for over 20 years. His primary responsibilities are technical in nature. He maintains, reports from, and instructs others on the use of the Raiser’s Edge database and NXT web view.