GLENN HOFMANN, EXECUTIVE ASSOCIATE ATHLETIC DIRECTOR
Glenn Hofmann brings over 20 years of collegiate athletics experience into his first year as Executive Associate Athletic Director for External Relations at VCU.
Along with years of experience, he also brings a long relationship with Director of Athletics Ed McLaughlin, after working together for three years at Niagara University.
"I am grateful for the opportunity to re-connect with Ed McLaughlin and join his staff at VCU,” Hofmann said. “There has never been a more exciting time to be a part of VCU Athletics and the larger university community, and I look forward to building upon the remarkable momentum that has transformed this institution into a national leader in athletics, academics and community impact."
Hofmann most recently spent three years as the Director of Athletics at Merrimack College. During his tenure at Merrimack, Hofmann completed a major renovation to Lawler Arena, increased fundraising by 27%, ticket sales by 243%, hockey attendance by 310%, had three teams win conference championships, seven teams qualify for NCAA Tournaments and raised the department’s grade point average to a 3.0, which was higher than that of the general student body. Under Hofmann’s leadership, Merrimack’s NCAA Division I hockey team qualified for the NCAA Tournament for the first time in school history, and achieved a No. 1 ranking in 2011.
Prior to Merrimack, Hofmann served as associate athletics director, external affairs at Niagara, where he managed and mentored coaches, staff and students; generated new and increased revenue streams; and assisted in all facets of strategic planning, implementation, budgeting and personnel for their NCAA Division I program. A strong fundraiser, Hofmann developed and directed the athletic strategic fundraising plan that resulted in a ten percent increase in annual fundraising and a 21% increase in donors. Under Hofmann’s direction, the overall athletics department external revenue increased by 41% over a two-year period.
Hofmann also served as associate athletics director, external relations at Lehigh University from 1998 to 2005. Prior to that position, he served as assistant athletics director, communications and marketing; and sports information director at Lehigh.
Hofmann has a master of arts in sports management from East Stroudsburg University and a bachelor of arts in mass communications from St. Bonaventure University. He also successfully completed the NACDA Sports Management Institute program and served as an adjunct professor of sports management at Merrimack College, Niagara University and DeSales College.
Hofmann and his wife Sue reside in Richmond.
Regional Contact Areas: NY City, California, Boston, Philadelphia, Atlanta
Sports: Men's Tennis, Women's Tennis, Men's Golf, Men's Soccer
LIONEL BACON, ASSOCIATE ATHLETIC DIRECTOR FOR DEVELOPMENT
Orginally from Louisville, KY, Lionel Bacon joined the VCU Atheltics staff team in September of 2014. Bacon graduated from VCU for both his undergraduate and graduate degrees, incluidng a Master's in Athletic Administration in 1994. During Bacon's undergraduate years at VCU, he was a member of the VCU Men's Basketball team, including serving as co-captain in both his junior and senior seasons. While completing his graduate degree, Bacon was a member of the VCU Athletic depertment staff team and served as Assistant Ticket Manager and Director ofAthletic Outreach. Immediately following graduate school, Bacon began a 20 year career with the YMCA, which included roles in Richmond, Cleveland, Ohio, Houston, Texas, and most recently in South Hampton Roads, Virginia, where he served as District Vice President.
"It's unbelievable to have the opportunity to support student-athletes at such an incredible university, where I myself was a student-athlete. Being able to give back to an athletic department that gave so much to me is exciting!"
In his role at VCU, Bacon is responsible for securing new and existing donors to the Ram Athletic Fund for annual and major gifts, and working closely with the Ram Athletic Fund Board. He is also responsible for working with Men's and Women's Basketball, Men's and Women's Track and Field and Cross Country to implement sport specific fundraising programs as well as sport specific advisory boards.
Lionel, his wife Christy, and their sons, Landon and Leyton reside in Richmond.
Regional Contact Areas: Chicago, Florida, Washington DC
Sports: Men's Basketball, Women's Basketball, Men's Cross Country/Track & Field, Women's Cross Country/Track & Field
RUSSELL GRIMM, ASSISTANT ATHLETIC DIRECTOR FOR DEVELOPMENT
A native of Franklin, TN, Russell Grimm has been with the VCU Athletic Department since September 2013. Grimm graduated from the University of Tennessee in 2007 with a B.S. in Journalism and Electronic Media. Following his time in Knoxville, he moved back home to Middle Tennessee to pursue his Masters of Sport Administration from Belmont University in Nashville.
Grimm began his career in athletic development at the University Of Michigan Athletic Department, working as Development Associate for the “Victors Club.” At Michigan, Grimm was part of fundraising team responsible for the $226 million capital campaign for renovation and expansion of Michigan Stadium. During his time in Ann Arbor, Grimm provided integral support with annual and major gift giving, premium seating and suite sales for the 3,000 seat, 81 suite expansion of Michigan Stadium, as well as assisting with the coordination of donor benefits, database management, parking reallocation, gift renewals, gift processing, game-day operations, special events, booster activities, promotions and other duties for the $30 million annual fund, 17,500 donor operation.
In 2011, Grimm transitioned from Ann Arbor to Boston, Massachusetts, accepting a position as Assistant Director of Development for the Boston College Athletic Department. As a team member with the “Flynn Fund,” Boston College’s 4,500 donor, $20 million annual fundraising organization, Grimm focused primarily on oversight of the Donor-Based Seating program, responsible for over $6 million in annual revenue. In his time on Chestnut Hill, Grimm was also part of an athletics team responsible for portion of Boston College’s university-wide $1.5 billion Light the World capital campaign.
In his role at VCU, Grimm is responsible for securing new and existing donors to the Ram Athletic Fund for annual and major gifts. He is tasked with directly managing the Ram Athletic Annual Fund, including annual appeals, phone-a-thons, season ticket upgrades, new member acquisition, oversight of the donor benefit structure and the fulfillment of priority seating, parking, and special event fundraisers.
Additionally, he is working to implement a sport-specific fundraising program for all 15 varsity sports programs at VCU, serving as the RAF liaison for the Women’s Basketball, Volleyball, Men’s and Women’s Track & Cross Country programs.
Grimm and his wife, Erin, live in Richmond with their dachshund, Jackson.
Regional Contact Areas: Charlotte, Raleigh-Durham, Norfolk, Virginia Beach
Sports: Baseball, Women's Soccer, Volleyball
ABBY BERGAKKER, DIRECTOR OF STEWARDSHIP, GIFT PROCESSING AND SPECIAL EVENTS
A native of Grand Rapids, Mich., Abby Bergakker first came to VCU in 2011 as a graduate student in VCU's Center for Sports Leadership. While working on her graduate degree, she also worked in the athletic department as a graduate assistant with the ticket office. In this role, Bergakker managed the ticket office for Olympic sports and assisted with ticket office operations.
Bergakker completed her Masters of Education in Sports Leadership in 2012, and a few months later was hired into her new role as Director of Stewardship, Gift Processing and Special Events. In this new role, Bergakker is responsible for coordinating all gift processing and managing special events and donor relations for the athletic department. She works closely with the development staff to ensure that all Ram Athletic Fund needs are met.
Before coming to VCU, Bergakker attended Messiah College near Harrisburg, Pa. While there, she garnered several awards as a four-year starter for the softball team and helped lead the Falcons to the 2009 NCAA Division III Softball National Championship. Bergakker was founding of the Messiah College Sport Management Society, and served as secretary from 2008-10. She graduated from Messiah with a degree in Sports Management in 2010.
Regional Contact Area: Roanoke
Sports:Field Hockey, Women's Lacrosse
BRITTANY DIXON, SPECIAL EVENTS & FULFILLMENT DIRECTOR
Brittany Dixon joined the VCU Athletics Corporate Sponsorship team in June of 2014 as the Corporate Fulfillment Director. In this role, she was responsible for the organization and executuion of elements, contracts, and payments agreed upon by VCU Athletics and their corporate sponsors.
In July 2015, Brittany transitioned into the role of Special Events and Fulfillment Director where she manages all VCU Athletic Department special events. She works closely with the development staff to ensure that each event is executed smoothly while providing an enjoyable experience for all the many supporters of VCU Athletics.
Prior to joining the VCU Athletic Department, Brittany spent six years working for a Richmond-area church, Commonwealth Chapel, where she handled communication, hospitality and event execution, as well as other administrative responsibilites.
A native Richmonder, Brittany is a 2009 Graduate of Virginia Commonwealth University, where she majored in Public Relations, receiving her Bachelor of Science. Brittany and her husband, Josh, continue to reside in Richmond.
ALEX OLSON, DEVELOPMENT GA
Alex Olson joined the VCU Athletics Department in August of 2015, as a Graduate Assistant for Development. He assits in the daily responsibilites of running the Ram Athletic Fund.
A native of Yorktown, VA, Alex graduated from Grafton High School in 2011. He earned a Bachelors Degree from Carroll University, where he studied Exercise Science. He was a member of the Carroll University Baseball team all four years, was a four-time Academic-All Conference, and was voted team captain in his final two years.
Alex also served as SAAC President for two and a half years and also SAAC Chairman for the Midwest Conference during his senior year. He was able to overhaul the SAAC organization by creating an executive board, increasing student-athlete participation, and getting. Alex also led a campaign to bring awareness to university administration of the necessary renovations needed to the main athletic facility, in which an $8 million renovation was completed shortly after he graduated.
Alex is looking to continue his career in Athletic Development after graduating from VCU with his M.Ed. in Sport Leadership.
SEAN WHEELER, DEVELOPMENT GA
Sean Wheeler joined the VCU Athletics Department in August of 2015, as a Graduate Assistant for Development. He assists in the daily responsibilites of running the Ram Athletic Fund.
Born and raised in Herndon, VA, Sean graduated from James Madison University with a degree in Sport and Recreation Management and a General Business Minor. At JMU, he served as a student manager for the Football and Men's Basketball programs, as well as interning for the JMU Athletics Marketing Department. He was also on the executive board for the sport management club, Sport and Leisure Association of Madison.
The summer going into his senior year, Sean studied abroad in the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland, where he studied all aspects of Irish Sport and Culture, including a number of site visits to state of the art facilities and venues related to sport. He also spent that summer serving as the Assitant General Manager for the Aldie Senators Baseball Organization of the Valley Baseball League, where he controlled game-day operations and acquired multiple sponsorships for the team.
Sean is looking to continue his career in Athletic Development after graduating from VCU with his M.Ed. in Sport Leadership.