In an email sent to faculty and staff on Sept. 23, President Denise Battles announced that Gail Glover, chief communications and marketing officer, will be leaving the college at the semester’s conclusion to join the administrative leadership at Bucknell University.
Glover joined the campus community in the spring of 2016 and since, under her leadership, has managed a variety of communication and marketing responsibilities that influence how Geneseo is perceived from many positions.
“I started here in May 2016. At that point, my prior experience was at Union College and Binghamton University,” Glover said. “Over the course of my career, you know, I moved up the ranks … I started in media relations and then I began to have more and more responsibilities while building my portfolio.”
Glover has served in higher education for 25 years, assuming the role of senior director of communications and marketing at Union College. Prior, she worked at her alma mater,
Binghamton University, for 13 years in public relations and communications.
“When I came here the position was very attractive to me,” Glover said. “I got to be on cabinet and to be part of the senior leadership team, which is terrific as a communicator because it is important for communicators to be at the table where issues of direction and institutional vision of the college are discussed.”
According to Battles, prior to Glover’s hiring, communication was in the division of college advancement. She said they “pulled it out” and created a separate communication office.
“We had a vacancy when I came on board in 2015 in communications,” Battles said. “We took a look at what we wanted to do with communications and marketing, and it was clear that we really needed to really focus on that going forward. With the vacancy, we did a national search and Gail emerged as the clear successful candidate.”
In her email sent to faculty and staff, Battles said that Glover has served the campus by performing an array of communication and marketing responsibilities that aimed at “managing the College’s reputation, fostering strong relationships with its numerous internal and external stakeholders and supporting the goals of admissions, college advancement and other key areas of strategic marketing.”
“I tell people that what I do is very basic,” Glover said. “What I do is storytelling and I story tell to different people: students, faculty, staff, prospective students, parents, donors. And I tell stories in different places, on the web and in print pieces to the media. I could not have done any of this without a really talented and creative team of communicators. I have been blessed to have a crew of ten people that have worked with me on storytelling ability and together, we have really moved the needle in that space.”
During her three years on campus, Glover and her team created a new parent communication strategy via an electronic newsletter named One College Circle.
“I think [One College Circle] has really added to the institution’s ability to articulate its strengths,” Glover said. “And to tell its own story to its friends and media, and to all of the constituents beyond our campus borders I think we have done some really interesting work in storytelling to parents.”
Glover and her team also spearheaded a rebranding campaign that included the rework of the Geneseo logo.
“When I started working on doing some branding work, I started the process by reflecting on what makes Geneseo, Geneseo,” Glover said. “Part of this was the work we did with the logo. Part of the work we did there was in visual representation. With that, we started working on ‘how do we speak about ourselves,’ and we call that brand platform and brand pillars … essentially the language that we all use consistently to talk about this institution.”
The recent college branding work was a joint effort between the Communications and Marketing office and the School of Business, in accordance with the college’s 2021 Strategic Plan guidelines, according to a story published by The Lamron in September 2018.
“As I sit here and look at my water bottle, I can see the logo that was part of the rebranding effort,” Battles said, pointing to her dark blue water bottle. “[Gail] saw the development of that new institutional logo that now enhances our work-mark with a visual logo. She has done a lot in augmenting our communications.”
The project, which “revitalized the college’s reputation and image,” according to Glover, involved a comprehensive assortment of data.
“The logo was launched, and I am very proud of that,” Glover said. “I think that there are a lot of people who really like it. But the articulation part of it, there is still work to be done. I hope that the person who comes after me will continue that good work about how to articulate the institutions strength’s and its vision moving forward … I think that will be a key component of the next [chief communications officer].”
According to Battles, the college will seek to fill Glover’s position “as promptly as possible.”
“As she will be exiting later this fall, in December we will identify an interim holder for her position to succeed her,” Battles said. “We will [begin] a search later this fall, but it’s likely that given the timelines for typical leadership searches, it is likely that that person will not be able to join us until the latter part of spring or early summer.”
Battles said that because the chief communications officer reports directly to her, she will be assembling a search committee to fill the leadership communication position.
“There are so many ways that we can communicate now with the utilization of technologies well as the print medium,” Glover said. “There are opportunities for us to communicate across different platforms. I hope that the person who comes in can do that, creatively.”
Glover will join the Bucknell community on Jan. 6 where she will engage as the vice president for communications and will oversee many facets of communication, according to a university news release found on the Bucknell website.
“[Bucknell has] a similar set up with a very strong liberal arts core with professional programs,” Glover said. “I think that coming to Geneseo has provided me with a good skillset.”