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Jenna Hoff appointed as Senior Director of Advancement

The University of Utah College of Nursing has appointed Jenna Hoff as Senior Director of Advancement, effective March 18, 2024. With more than 15 years of experience in fundraising, leadership, and development, Hoff will apply her wealth of knowledge to the college's strategic efforts, ensuring continued philanthropic support for the college and its priorities.

Jenna Hoff


As a seasoned Director of Development and Corporate Relations at Baylor University, Hoff achieved notable success, leading the Give Light Campaign for the School of Engineering and Computer Science and raising more than $31.5 million. This achievement is particularly significant considering the school’s historical fundraising average of less than $500,000 annually. Under Hoff's leadership, the school increased its endowment from $3.1 million to $11.6 million, set five annual fundraising records, and established five inaugural endowed faculty chairs, a $1.5 million equipment fund, and a $1 million faculty award program.

Hoff will serve under the leadership of Kellie Esters, Senior Executive Director of Advancementfor Academic Health Sciences, and Dr. Marla De Jong, PhD, RN, CCNS, FAAN, Dean of the College of Nursing. "We eagerly anticipate Jenna making instrumental contributions that will further advance nursing and gerontology and achieve equitable well-being for all," states Dean De Jong. "Her remarkable fundraising history will undoubtedly aid in crafting effective strategies and fostering collaborative partnerships." 

Kellie Esters adds, "We are delighted Jenna Hoff will lead the College of Nursing Advancement team. Jenna brings a wealth of experience and enthusiasm to the team, and we are confident that her strategic vision and dedication, coupled with her successful fundraising background, will play a key role in propelling the College of Nursing to new heights."  

Previous to her role at Baylor University, Hoff served as Hospital Chaplain at Sanford Health,responding to emergencies and supporting the interdisciplinary hospice care team. As Chaplain Apprentice in the South Dakota Air National Guard, she trained military members regarding prevention of suicide and human trafficking, led weekend retreats for married couples and singles, and managed projects and programs for distinguished visitors. She later served as the Regional Director of Mental Health Grace Alliance, a nonprofit that supports individuals, couples, and families with mental health difficulties and disorders, and as Executive Director of Face it TOGETHER, a peer-based addiction wellness nonprofit, where she established itsbylaws, recruited 10 key community influencers to serve on its Board of Directors, and raised more than $85,000 in seven months.

"I am honored and excited to join the University of Utah College of Nursing as the Senior Director of Advancement. My passion for creating meaningful relationships and fundraising, coupled with over fifteen years of experience, has fueled my commitment to advancing academic excellence and shaping impactful philanthropic experiences. I am eager to learn from the incredible team already in place at the College of Nursing and contribute to the college's strategic efforts, building on my past successes at Baylor University. My journey from the South Dakota Air National Guard to leadership roles in mental health and addiction wellness nonprofits has deepened my understanding of diverse community needs, which will partner well with the mission and strategic plan of the College. I look forward to collaborating with the outstanding leadership team, including Senior Executive Director of Advancement Kellie Esters and DeanDr. Marla De Jong, as we work together to elevate the College of Nursing and make a meaningful difference in the lives of students, faculty, and the broader community."

Hoff earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Theology/Philosophy from the University of Sioux Falls, and a Master of Divinity degree in Pastoral Care and Counseling from Sioux Falls Seminary. She also completed the Non-commissioned Officer Academy through the United States Air National Guard.