Alumna Brings Global Perspective to the Board of Visitors

Jennifer Santoro StanleyJennifer Santoro Stanley (UTK ’95) is the very essence of a Volunteer. She is passionate about the university, and she contributes not just money but also her time and energy. She believes it is her duty to give back to the university that gave her so much.

The 1995 Arts and Sciences alumna is an impressive woman. She is one of only six Rhodes Scholars UT has graduated. She is founder and president of a business-consulting firm. She is actively involved with the College of Arts and Sciences as chair of the Board of Visitors. And she is currently working with campus and city leaders in Chattanooga to establish a Global Finance Center on the UTC campus.

Stanley says her decision to attend the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, had a tremendous impact on her success. “Other than marrying my husband, the best decision I ever made in my life was coming to UT,” said Stanley. “The people here are always looking out for you and your best interests.”

Stanley credits much of her college success to three people she interacted with on campus: history professor emeritus Bruce Wheeler, law professor Otis Stephens, and chancellor emeritus Bill Snyder.

“Dr. Wheeler and Dr. Stephens really encouraged me to work harder. They forced me to look beyond the short term and be bold,” she said. “Chancellor Snyder took a personal interest in me and helped me reach my goals and gain additional funding for my education.”

Stanley graduated from UT in 1995 with a Bachelor of Arts. She went on to pursue a master’s degree in international political economy from the London School of Economics and Political Science. She was selected as a Rhodes Scholar and studied toward a Ph.D. in politics at Oxford University.

She spent 8 years as a management consultant with McKinsey & Company as an expert in sales-force and channel management before founding her own consulting company, OX1. OX1 provides strategic assistance to marketing and sales professionals through training programs, individual coaching, and tailored improvement programs. She has led global training programs in marketing and sales and has managed several teams focused on such issues as growth strategy, sales and marketing effectiveness, and organizational change.

She brings her professional expertise into her volunteer activities, as well. As chair of the College of Arts and Science Board of Visitors, Stanley believes the function of the board is to be a source of support and insight to the college administration.

She also feels the board plays a vital role in the university’s current capital campaign. “The board should be seen as leaders in giving, particularly to the [Arts and Sciences] College Fund,” she says. “Our board members are reaching out to other college alumni and friends and encouraging them to donate.” The college’s goal in the Campaign for Tennessee will be used for student scholarships, faculty fellowships, and enhanced curricula.

Stanley’s next venture will benefit UT students in Chattanooga. She is leading the development of a new global finance center at UTC. The center will prepare students to compete in the global economy through practical real-world experiences.

“This center will benefit the whole UT system,” said Stanley. “Anywhere you can have pockets of excellence, such as the Marco Institute in Knoxville, it is a benefit.”

As busy as she is, Stanley always makes time for the things that matter to her. Fortunately for us, she counts UT as a priority in her life. Her talent, expertise, and Volunteer spirit make this alumna an invaluable friend.

—Beth Gladden