Sunday, May 12, 2024
Three successful UCF alumni join Foundation Board.

Three successful UCF alumni join Foundation Board.

Three Distinguished Alumni Join UCF Foundation Board of Directors


Three distinguished UCF alumni have been elected as new members of the UCF Foundation’s Board of Directors. These individuals are leaders in their industries and communities, bringing valuable expertise and a deep commitment to supporting the university, its students, and faculty. The new board members are Robert “Rob” Kantor, Laurette Koellner, and John Mahony. Their four-year term began on July 1.

New Members of the Board

Rob Kantor is currently the Vice President for Business Analytics and Industrial Engineering at Universal Destinations & Experiences. With over 20 years of experience at Universal Parks and Resort, Kantor has led numerous process improvement and cost-saving initiatives across various divisions. He is also actively involved in volunteer work, assisting organizations like Give Kids the World and coaching at the YMCA and Little League International. Kantor holds multiple degrees and certificates from UCF, including an MBA, a master’s in industrial engineering, and a bachelor’s in industrial engineering.

Laurette Koellner has had a distinguished career in managing large, complex, international institutions in the aviation and technology industries. She spent several years at Boeing, serving in various leadership positions, including Vice President and General Auditor, Vice President and Corporate Controller, and President of Connexion by Boeing. Koellner is also a UCF graduate, having earned a bachelor’s degree in 1977. She holds an MBA from Stetson University and has been recognized as a trailblazer in her field.

John Mahony is a co-founder of Kavaliro, a recruitment and placement company, which he established with fellow UCF graduates. He actively contributes to charitable organizations such as Boys and Girls Clubs of Central Florida, Catholic Charities, and Kick off for Kids. Mahony and his wife, Diane Mahony, who is also a UCF graduate, are dedicated supporters of their alma mater’s athletics. John Mahony received his bachelor’s degree in organizational communication from UCF in 1996.

UCF Foundation Board of Directors

The UCF Foundation Board of Directors consists of 25 members who play a crucial role in advancing the university’s mission. They provide leadership in the foundation’s efforts to support student success, faculty excellence, and the development of world-class facilities through philanthropy. With their expertise and dedication, these board members significantly contribute to the university’s growth and impact.

New Leadership Roles

The board recently underwent changes in its leadership roles. Brian Butler, a prominent Central Florida resident and President/CEO of JCB Construction Inc., has taken over as the new board chair. He succeeds Carrie Daanen, who served as the board chair for the past two years. Stuart Heaton, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of Elevation Financial Group, has been appointed as the new Vice Chair. Roslyn Burttram, with over 30 years of experience in healthcare and nursing fields, has been elected to a second term as Second Vice Chair. Eva Tukdarian, Chief Financial Officer and Investment Officer of Dr. Phillips Charities, now serves as the Treasurer, and Dana Patton, a respected community leader and philanthropist, has been named the Secretary.

Excitement and Gratitude

UCF Foundation’s CEO, Rod Grabowski, expressed excitement and gratitude for the new board members. Acknowledging the immense contributions of volunteer leaders, Grabowski emphasized the collective goal of unleashing the potential of people and ideas to positively change the world. With the new directors and officers joining the board, the UCF Foundation is poised to achieve even greater success and impact in the future.


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