Meet the Team

Amy GardnerAmy Gardner 

Executive Director | amygardner@berkeley.edu

In her role as executive director, Amy leads the strategic framework for campuswide partnership collaboration and engagement, working directly with campus stakeholders to identify and cultivate “industries of opportunity” while ensuring partnership opportunities are in alignment with the University’s values and mission of teaching, research, and public service. Additionally, she oversees the request for proposal (RFP) process, contract development, UPP category working groups, and the department budget and finances.

Prior to joining UPP, Amy served as the director of corporate and community relations with the San Francisco Bowl Game where she was responsible for sponsorship development, event planning, and game operations. She graduated from UC Berkeley with a double major in psychology and economics and received a master's degree in sport management from the University of San Francisco.

Jane ChristenJane Christen 

Executive Assistant | jchristen@berkeley.edu

Jane provides executive support to Executive Director Amy Gardner and the team members of University Business Partnerships & Services. In addition, she assists with complex scheduling, strategic problem solving, event logistics and meeting coordination, while working on special assignments designed to meet and benefit the needs of UBPS.

Prior to joining UBPS, Jane served as an executive assistant in the Letters & Sciences Deans’ Office where she acted as the primary liaison between senior executives and university administrators, donors, faculty, and the general public. Jane received her bachelor’s degree in resource management from the University of California, Berkeley and earned a master’s in environmental law and her juris doctor from Vermont Law School.

Anissa HagedornAnissa Hagedorn

Activation Manager | anissahagedorn@berkeley.edu

Anissa serves as the activation manager for University Partnership Program. She acts as an intermediary between the business community and the University, managing assets on campus. Additionally, she works with partners and campus stakeholders to develop marketing strategies while tracking sponsorship elements.

Anissa graduated from UC Davis with a bachelor's degree in rhetoric and communication. She has over 12 years of experience in both marketing and management.

Amber HopkinsAmber Hopkins

Communications Manager | amber.hopkins@berkeley.edu

As communications manager for the University Partnership Program, Amber is responsible for overseeing and implementing UPP’s strategic communications plan including the website, social media, public relations, marketing, publications, and presentations. She works as a direct liaison to match the interests and needs of external partners with the strengths of the University brand and campus stakeholders.

Prior to joining UC Berkeley, Amber worked as a communications coordinator at Texas A&M University for 10 years. She earned a bachelor of business administration in marketing from Texas A&M University.

Brandon Schneider headshotBrandon Schneider

Manager of Project Affairs | bschneid@berkeley.edu

Brandon manages the UPP working groups and the relationships with internal campus stakeholders. He assists with the development of strategic RFPs and works with prospective partners during the negotiation and contracting process. Brandon evaluates the impact of current and potential partnerships, providing data analysis and recommendations for revenue generation and growth. In addition, he oversees the review and implementation of program processes and policies.

Brandon earned his Ph.D. in Italian Studies with a Certificate in New Media from Berkeley, and also holds an M.A. in Political Science from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. He is also a member of the Arts Committee of Albany, California.

Deborah Tallyn

Project Manager | dtallyn@berkeley.edu 

As project manager of the University of California Partnership Programs (UCPP), Deborah works closely with the campuses to develop operating principles, program processes and policies, and a governance model for multi-campus partnerships. Additionally, she will oversee the development of a UCPP partnership “Tool Kit” to help guide campuses on how to strategically engage and manage campus partners.

Deborah joined Berkeley after a successful corporate career in product development, marketing and project management. She supported the initial setup of UPP, researching other programs and connecting with campus stakeholders to build out a governance model and early partnership processes. In addition, she has worked on other revenue generating projects on campus, most recently serving as project manager with Haas School of Business for the launch of Chou Hall. Deborah has an M.B.A. from Stanford University.

 


UBPS Interns

Madhu Balasubramanian

Marketing and Communications Assistant | madhub7456@berkeley.edu

Madhu Balasubramanian serves as the marketing and communications assistant for the University Partnership Program. She is responsible for brand building, developing, executing, and assessing strategies along with the creation of a communications plan for UBPS. In addition, Madhu composes engaging content and graphics for print, newsletters, and a variety of social platforms and serves as the department marketing liaison among UPP partners and UC Berkeley stakeholders.

Madhu is a first-year student at UC Berkeley, intended major Business Administration with a focus in marketing and advertising.

Photo of MariaMaria Sestito 

Marketing and Communications Assistant | maria_sestito@berkeley.edu

Maria Sestito serves as the marketing and communications assistant for the University Partnership Program. She is responsible for brand building, developing, executing, and assessing strategies along with the creation of a communications plan for UBPS. Additionally, Maria composes engaging content and graphics for print, newsletters, and a variety of social platforms and serves as the department marketing liaison among UPP partners and UC Berkeley stakeholders.

Maria is a first-year master’s student at UC Berkeley’s Graduate School of Journalism, a Foreign Language and Area Studies (FLAS) fellow and a recipient of the Dean’s Merit Fellowship. Before attending UC Berkeley, Maria worked as a reporter and photographer at two daily newspapers and graduated with honors from Rutgers University.