A Different Purple

New Tarleton AVP Moves to Stephenville from TCU 

Tarleton State University’s new Assistant Vice President for Development is accustomed to a purple-based wardrobe. 

Jennifer Colley joined the university June 1 after eight years as Executive Director/Associate Athletics Director of the Frog Club at Texas Christian University, where she was responsible for all aspects of the annual fund. 

Her team raised $13 million in annual funds and over $28 million in overall giving while reaching a $60 million fundraising goal in six months for the Amon G. Carter Stadium Expansion Project.  She also served on the Advancement Leadership Team and the Internal Campaign for Planning Committee for TCU’s $1 billion campaign.  

“I oversee the major gifts team,” she said. “We have six major gift officers and we are tasked with raising funds to support the mission and goals of the university. Certainly, first and foremost, we will focus on the university’s largest-ever capital campaign set forth by President James Hurley.” 

As part of the leadership team for the Vice President for Institutional Advancement, Jennifer will provide strategy for all university fundraising, work with businesses and foundations in supporting Tarleton philanthropically, and help manage capital campaigns. 

“It’s getting out and seeing people,” she said, “some of whom may not have been approached before. There’s a lot of opportunity.” 

Her experience includes 22 years at UT Austin, where she was responsible for Longhorn Foundation gift solicitation, donor relations, annual campaigns, special events, volunteer boards and customer service with over 12,000 donors giving over $36 million.  

She increased membership for 10 statewide public relations clubs established to build a pipeline of donor prospects. She also served on the team responsible for developing UT’s Intercollegiate Athletics Strategic Plan.   

Though new to Tarleton and Stephenville, she has quickly acclimated to a different pace. 

“It’s all about people and the relationships you build,” she said of the new position. “That has been the common thread through everything I’ve ever done, the opportunity to meet people and hear their story.  

“In this case, it’s the people of the Tarleton community, the people I work with and certainly the donors I will cross paths with. There are so many incredible stories out there that a lot of people don’t have to opportunity to hear.  

“That’s the drive behind what I do, hearing those stories and then tying those stories back to this institution.” 

Jennifer earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration and tourism management from Northeastern Oklahoma State University. She is married to Dr. Terry Colley, a retired Deputy Executive Director of the Texas Historical Commission. They have two grown children, Travis and Kate, and live in Stephenville.