Jennifer Spuehler has been part of the Chicagoland educational and philanthropic profession for 22 years. Her career started at the Illinois Institute of Technology, and from there she held successive positions at the American Library Association and The University of Chicago Booth School of Business. After relocating to Aurora, Illinois, Jennifer began work at Lewis University in Romeoville, Illinois as the Director of Annual Giving. In that role, she established the first comprehensive annual fundraising program for alumni and friends of the Catholic, De La Salle Christian Brothers University. Most recently, Jennifer spent six years at the Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy (IMSA), a specialized residential high school for students in Illinois who are gifted in math and science. At IMSA, she introduced several online giving methods, including givezooks!, a social media-based online giving portal. She also oversaw the implementation of a new alumni website; solicitation of alumni and friends through direct mail, electronic communications, and personal visits; supported the Board of the IMSA Fund for Advancement of Education, and organized the planning phase of IMSA25, the Academy’s 25th anniversary celebration.
In 2011, Jennifer joined Gonser Gerber to launch and lead the Gonser Gerber Institute. Different from traditional professional development, Gonser Gerber Institute programs are designed to give advancement professionals opportunities to both learn and apply theoretical “best practices” in the advancement profession. The curricula for the Institute’s programs include time for participants to create personalized plans of actions or solve specific problems faced by their institution. Gonser Gerber consultants and other industry experts will serve as the faculty at the Institute.
In 2018, Jennifer added the role of Executive Director of Gonser Gerber Search to her position. Gonser Gerber Search provides uncommonly successful advancement search services for universities, colleges, healthcare institutions, schools, and other non-profit organizations.
Education & Achievements
- Masters Business Administration (Marketing emphasis), Lewis University
- B.A., Mass Communications (Public Relations emphasis), College of Letters and Science, University of Wisconsin
- Executive Director of Development, Director of Development: Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy, Aurora, Illinois
- Director of Annual Giving and Associate Director of Development: Lewis University, Romeoville, Illinois
- Associate Director, Chicago GSB Fund: University of Chicago, Graduate School of Business (Chicago Booth School of Business), Chicago, Illinois
- Development Associate: Illinois Institute of Technology, Chicago, Illinois
When not running the Gonser Gerber Institute, Jennifer spends her time with her husband and their two young daughters. Together, they enjoy walking around their friendly neighborhood, picnics with good cheese (they are from Wisconsin after all!) and time in and around the pool. Jennifer is also an avid paper-crafter, music and movie fan, and likes to keep up to date on all the latest tech gadgets.
Residence: Aurora, Illinois