Director, Executive Events
Colleen Flage is responsible for the planning and implementation of UF executive events. She manages the Earl and Christy Powell University House, for campus-related rental events, as well as the official residence of the UF President, the John and Mary Lou Dasburg House. She comes to the Office of the President with 12 years of experience in facilities, operations, and events from her employment at the UF Levin College of Law and the UF J. Wayne Reitz Union. Colleen is a double Gator from UF College of Health and Human Performance and has received the Division 3 Superior Accomplishment Award.
Director of Executive Communications
Aaron Hoover works closely with UF’s president on all aspects of presidential communication, including speeches, videos, correspondence, social media, columns and op-eds. He also manages special projects, assists cabinet members with communications and partners with colleagues across UF in strategic communications leadership. His speeches have won 12 national Cicero Awards since 2011, including, most recently, the 2022 Cicero for dedication/groundbreaking speeches and the 2020 Cicero for commencement speeches. He joined the president's office in 2011 following a career as a science writer and daily newspaper reporter.
Conference – Event Planner II
Stacey Merritt coordinates rental events at the Earl and Christy Powell University House, working closely with the house caterer and the event host/hostess from pre-planning to the day of the event. She also supports the Director of Executive Events with presidential events and serves as the back-up contact for the John and Mary Lou Dasburg House. She joined the staff in 2012 after working 18 years in the banking industry in Jacksonville, Florida.
Heather Middaugh is the front office receptionist for the Office of the President. She greets and assists all guests in the suite and works directly with the President to keep his day on schedule. She also assists with financial management, including overseeing billing and other matters related to the office. Heather is a resident of Gainesville. She came to us from O2B Kids where she served as Service Manager for 12 years, ensuring that every aspect ran perfectly smooth. She joined the president’s office in August 2021. We welcome her as our newest team member.
Director, Presidential Athletics
Associate Secretary to the University of Florida Board of Trustees
Melissa Orth is responsible for Presidential Athletics. She oversees all aspects of the football President’s Suite as well as tickets and special events for other Gator sports. Melissa serves as the Associate Secretary to the University of Florida Board of Trustees. Serving the Board since 2016, she works directly with the Board and UF leadership identifying and managing board operations, strategy, and long-range planning. Melissa has more than 22 years of service with UF and extensive experience in administration, government relations, events and advocacy.
External Relations Coordinator & Scheduling Specialist
Ashley Partridge is the External Relations Coordinator for the UF Board of Trustees and the Scheduling Specialist for the Office of the President. In those roles, she supports the Board, assists with presidential athletics, and supports the President with coordinating scheduling requests and travel arrangements. She joined the President’s Office in July 2017 from the UF Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology.
Custodial Worker I
Luz Rodriguez-Figueroa is the Custodial Worker I for the Earl and Christy Powell University House. She is responsible for maintaining the cleanliness of the house as it serves as the venue for many distinguished events throughout the year. She has worked with the University of Florida for 13 years, and has earned two Employee of the Month awards.
Mattie Williams is the Executive Housekeeper for the John and Mary Lou Dasburg House, the official residence of the University of Florida President. She oversees the cleaning and maintenance needs, welcomes visitors, and assists with functions at the house. Mattie has worked with the Office of the President and Facilities Services team for 18 years. During this time, Mattie has been the recipient of two Division 2 Superior Accomplishment Awards.