Donor Profile: Katherine Gillette ’15

Donor Profile: Katherine Gillette ’15

“While a student at Fairfield, Katherine Gillette ’15 took the opportunity to study abroad during a winter intersession in Italy. The trip, led by Philip Eliasoph, PhD, professor of visual and performing arts, and his wife Yael Eliasoph, instructor of Italian at Fairfield, was “truly an amazing experience” for Gillette where she felt like she was “walking through an art history textbook.”

Gillette, an art history major, recalls many details from her journey to Florence and Rome, but specifically she remembers the joy and mystery of experiencing the work of Renaissance masters in person.

“Fairfield taught me how to step out of my comfort zone,” Gillette said. “I was challenged academically, learned to balance my studies and activities, explored my spirituality, and gained many valuable connections among peers, faculty, and alumni.”

Three years after graduation, Gillette has been busy building her career, starting out in the marketing department at First Republic Bank and now in higher education as a leadership gifts officer at Cardozo Law School in New York City. Now a N.J. resident who still frequents museums, Gillette currently serves as president for the Manhattan regional chapter of the Fairfield University Alumni Association.

“I find it rewarding to assist in creating and producing opportunities for alumni to reconnect, network, and engage,” Gillette said, having recently assumed the two-year volunteer role that includes monthly conference calls, planning events, and regularly reporting to the Alumni Association Board.

Gillette, a legacy alumna of the University who fell in love with the town of Fairfield after her first tour, said that the most important thing alumni can do is stay connected.

“Even though we may be far from campus, the Alumni Association is not geographically restricted,” Gillette said. “We have strong networks of outstanding alumni who are proud to call themselves Stags, and you never know who might help you with a connection, a Katherine Gillette ’15 Donor PROFILE job opportunity, or a business partnership. It’s a small world, and we are continuing to make our mark.”

On giving back to the University through the Fairfield Fund, Gillette said it’s important to her to show support as an alumna so Fairfield can continue to grow and to equip current and future students with the tools and resources to succeed.

“I give back because it’s my way of saying ‘thank you’ for all that Fairfield gave me,” Gillette continued. “As young alumni we have student loans or are in grad school or are just starting out and that can be a sensitive time. But, alumni need to keep in touch regardless.”

“Share the passion and help support each other,” Gillette said in regards to challenging the participation of young alumni. “Help us improve. Propel and excel… any donation will help us to do that.”