Spartan Fund

Our Staff

Need to get in touch? Call us direct at 517-432-4610 or use our contact page for additional information. 

  • Rebecca Surian

    Rebecca Surian

    Executive Associate Athletics Director, Senior Director of Development

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    Rebecca Surian joined the Spartan Fund in April, 2021 as Senior Director of Development. Surian will guide the Spartan Fund as the Senior Director of Development, while serving on the department’s executive leadership team. The job entails fundraising, personnel management and program management. Surian will maintain a personal portfolio of major and principal gift prospects, while also directing a Spartan Fund staff that includes 14 full-time employees, ensuring that the unit is acting in concert with the department’s priorities.

    Surian brings 30 years of fundraising experience at Michigan State to the athletic department. She comes to athletics from the College of Music, where she’s worked since 2006, including as Senior Director of Development since 2015. At the College of Music she spearheaded unprecedented success in philanthropy for the College’s students, faculty, programs and facilities, with more than $100M in gifts and commitments raised. During the recent Empower Extraordinary Campaign, the College exceeded its stretch-goal by 187%. In March 2020, the College of Music opened the doors to the newly constructed Billman Music Pavilion. Under Surian’s direction and leadership, the College surpassed its fundraising goal for the $41.5M new facility.

    A graduate of Michigan State, Surian joined the College of Music as Director of Development in 2006. Prior to that she served as the Director of Development for the College of Arts & Letters from 2001 to 2006. From 1995 to 2001, she was Director within the Special Giving Societies. From 1991 to 1995, she worked for the Annual Giving Programs, serving first as systems coordinator before being promoted to assistant director in 1993.

  • Mark Schoenl

    Associate Athletics Director, Director of Major Gifts

    mschoenl@ath.msu.edu

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    Mark leads the Major Gifts team and Spartan Fund Development Officers in their efforts to establish donor relationships and cultivate significant financial gifts in support of MSU Athletics. Additionally, he has led the recent increase and focus for endowment support and planned giving through the Spartan Fund. Mark joined MSU as the first Director of Sales for Premium Seating in 2006. His background includes a variety of roles working for an NFL franchise, collegiate sports marketing firm, minor league baseball team, and an independent business news organization.

    Mark is a proud Spartan alumnus, class of 1992, and resides in Okemos with his wife, and 2 sons (future Spartans).

  • Tim Day

    Associate Athletics Director/Development

    daytimo3@ath.msu.edu

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    Tim Day joined the Michigan State University Athletic Department’s development staff in September 2007.

    As an Associate Athletic Director/Development, Tim is charged with developing, implementing and evaluating all annual giving initiatives and programs – including acquisition, stewardship, and communication to the MSU Athletics donor base. Managing the Annual Giving team, Tim has also leads efforts pertaining to letter-winner giving, seat adjustments, and donor parking.

    Tim, a former letter-winner at Michigan State, played two seasons of professional baseball with the Chicago White Sox organization. Tim earned a bachelor’s of science degree (Kinesiology) from MSU in 2006 and continued his education by earning a master’s of science (Sports Administration) in 2009 from MSU.

    Tim and his wife, Alyssa, have four children, Easton, Rylan, Elijah, and Everett.

  • John Patterson

    Assistant Athletics Director/Associate Director of Development

    jpatterson@ath.msu.edu

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    John became a member of the Spartan Fund staff in August 2014 and was promoted to Assistant Athletics Director in December, 2020.  John will focus on engaging the Spartan family to create opportunities that will impact MSU student-athletes.

    Prior to Michigan State, John served as the Assistant Director of the National Commodore Club and Athletics Development at Vanderbilt University. Originally from Columbia, Tennessee, John graduated from the University of Memphis with a bachelor’s degree in sports management and was a football student-athlete. John also holds a master’s of business administration from Marshall University where he was a graduate assistant in the athletic department.

    John and his wife Jenny reside in East Lansing.

  • Connor Kruse

    Associate Director of Development

    krusecon@ath.msu.edu

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    Connor Kruse joined the Michigan State University Athletic Department Spartan Fund staff in July 2018.  As an Associate Director of Development, Connor will focus on the cultivation and stewardship of Spartans In the Western US.

    Prior to the Spartan Fund, Connor worked as an Assistant Director of Development for the University of Colorado’s Buff Club under the Annual Fund.

    Connor graduated from Michigan State University with a bachelor’s degree in economics, and a master’s degree in sports administration. He is a former football letterwinner for the Spartans playing offensive line form 2012 – 2014.

    Connor and his wife Brittany currently reside in Lansing, MI.   

     

  • McGaw-Dorn

    Dorn McGaw

    Associate Director of Development, Southeast Michigan

    mcgawj@ath.msu.edu

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    Dorn McGaw has been with the Michigan State University Athletic Department since 1998 and joined The Spartan Fund in 2008.

    Dorn is a member of the Spartan Fund’s Major Gift Team as an Associate Director of Development. Dorn is responsible for the cultivation and stewardship of donors across the country with an emphasis on Southeastern Michigan. Dorn’s role in Southeast Michigan is to develop new relationships with MSU Alumni while keeping current Spartan donors engaged and involved with Michigan State University.

    Dorn and his wife Elizabeth have been East Lansing Residents for the past 21 years. Elizabeth is a MSU graduate and currently works in the Chemistry Department at MSU. Daughter Kaylei graduated from MSU in 2010 and daughter Darby graduated MSU in 2015.

  • Jarrad Turner

    Associate Director of Development, Western & Midwest US

    jturner@ath.msu.edu

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    Jarrad became a member of the Spartan Fund staff in November 2019. Jarrad will focus on establishing and developing relationships in the Midwest and Pacific Northwest regions for the Spartan Fund.

     

    Jarrad previously served as a Major Gift Officer for the NYC region at Niagara University in Niagara Falls, NY. He has thirteen years of experience working in college and professional sports, including serving as Associate Athletics Director for Marketing and Development at Campbell University. Originally from Akron, OH, Jarrad earned his bachelor’s degrees in communications and American studies from Pennsylvania State University and was a four-year letter-winner for the PSU wrestling team. Jarrad completed his master’s degree in sports administration while coaching wrestling at Kent State University.

     

    Jarrad resides in Holt, MI with his wife, Katy, and two children, Henry and Lily.

  • Bryan Hoch

    Director of Premium Seating

    bhoch@ath.msu.edu

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    Bryan Hoch joined the Michigan State University Athletic Department’s development staff in January 2013, previously working in the Spartan Ticket Office as the Assistant and Associate Ticket Manager since 2005.

    As Director of Premium Seating, Bryan oversees sales and management of suite, club, and courtside seating areas for MSU Athletics. In addition, Bryan assists both the Annual Giving and Major Gifts teams with donor stewardship and fundraising initiatives while ensuring premium seat donors have memorable game-day experiences.

    Bryan earned both B.S. and M.Ed. degrees in Sport Management from East Stroudsburg University (PA) where he was also a 4-year letter winner on the football team. Prior to MSU, Bryan worked in the ticket offices at Lehigh University and the University of Maryland.

    Bryan is a native of Bath, PA and currently resides in Lansing, MI with his wife, Dr. Sara Timmons-Hoch.

  • Maggie Rolicheck

    Assistant Director of Development

    rolicheck@ath.msu.edu

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    Maggie joined the Spartan Fund staff as Assistant Director of Development in June, 2020.  Prior to Michigan State, Maggie served as a Development Assistant for the Tennessee Fund at the University of Tennessee. Maggie graduated from the University of Oregon with a Bachelor’s in Political Science, and received her Master’s in Sports Administration from Northwestern University. While attending graduate school, Maggie worked as a Fan Development Associate for the Chicago Blackhawks, and interned with the Chicago Bears.

    Originally from Modesto, CA, Maggie resides in Lansing, MI.

  • Sarah Skilling

    Director of Donor Relations & Events

    skillin3@ath.msu.edu

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    Sarah Skilling has been with Michigan State University since July of 2007 and began working for the MSU Athletic Department in May of 2012.

    As the Director of Donor Relations and Events, Sarah’s main responsibilities include planning special events and experiences for Spartan Fund donors. She also works with internal and external groups and organizations on collaborative events related to MSU Athletics.

    After graduating from MSU in 2000 with an Advertising degree, Sarah worked at the Lansing State Journal for five years doing marketing, promotions, special events and community relations. She was also a special events coordinator for the MSU Federal Credit Union from 2005-2007. Before MSU Athletics, Sarah worked for the MSU Alumni Association and University Advancement departments from 2007-2012.

    Sarah is a native of Rockford, MI. She played basketball and softball in high school and continues to enjoy playing organized sports.

    Sarah resides in Lansing, MI.

  • Sandra Debnar

    Communications Coordinator

    sandradebnar@ath.msu.edu

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    Sandra joined the Spartan Fund team in November 2019. As the Communications Coordinator she creates graphics and multimedia content and handles the design for all development-related needs. She came to MSU from the State of Michigan where she worked for the Legislative Service Bureau for 17 years providing design, proofreading and professional typesetting, as well as photography and videography services.

    In 2018, Sandra was selected as one of 16 national candidates awarded the Joe Beirne Scholarship to assist in further¬ing professional development, and was also chosen as a 2019 Women in Art Series award winner in photography from the LCC Women’s History Collective.

    Sandra is a life-long Michigan native and enjoys photographing everything the Great Lakes State has to offer.

  • Spartan Fund ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT

    Martha Bernath

    Administrative Assistant

    kingma11@ath.msu.edu

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    Martha Bernath joined the Spartan Fund family in February of 2002.

    Martha joined MSU with the College of Nursing in 2001 as a secretary. From there, she became the secretary/receptionist for the “Ralph Young Fund”. As the years went by she worked her way up to Administrative Assistant to Chuck Sleeper, Sr. Associate Athletic Director for the Spartan Fund. Her job duties have changed over the years, but her main responsibility is to Mr. Sleeper and assisting the donors who are part of the Athletic Directors Campaign Leadership Council (ADCLC). She works hard to build and maintain relationships with the Spartan Fund donors and to maintain the office day to day.

    Martha was selected by Athletic Director, Mark Hollis to represent Spartan Athletics on the Champion’s Team through the Disney Institute. This is something very near and dear to Mark Hollis and by being selected was an honor and one that Martha hopes to make a difference within the athletics environment.

  • Jayme Bisard

    Administrative Assistant

    bisardj@ath.msu.edu

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    Jayme joined Spartan Fund in June 2014. Jayme has worked at MSU since 2013 and prior to joining Spartan fund she worked at the College of Engineering providing support to the department of Mechanical Engineering. She came to MSU from Jackson National Life where she worked for 9 years with the Data Management Team as a team leader.

     

    Jayme and her husband reside in Williamston and enjoy spending their spare time running weekend races and enjoying the outdoors with their daughters, Evalyn and Hazel.

  • Gary Buckberry

    Gary Buckberry

    Donor Service Assistant

    buckberr@ath.msu.edu

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    Gary joined the Spartan Fund team in July of 2019. As the Donor Service Assistant, Gary works with our donors to provide superior customer service while building relationships with Spartan Fund donors.

    Prior to joining the Spartan Fund staff, Gary worked in the Spartan Ticket Office providing assistance in a variety of capacities and also for the College of Education at Michigan State University.

    Gary graduated with his Bachelor of Arts degree in Marketing from the Eli Broad College of Business at Michigan State University.  He also has a Master of Sport Management degree.

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