Dolores Starr, Executive Assistant to the President
Contact: (904) 256-7016, firstname.lastname@example.org
Dolores Starr has worked with five Jacksonville University Presidents, one Interim President and one Chancellor (Dr. Frances Kinne) since beginning her work at JU in 1989. As Executive Assistant, she arranges meetings, helps plan events, maintains the President’s schedule, handles correspondence and acts as an all-important liaison between the President and the public. Ms. Starr, a Jacksonville native, is married with two sons, Steve and Shawn (a JU graduate). Outside of work, she enjoys gardening, reading and keeping up with her three granddaughters.
Artis Gilmore '71, Special Assistant to the President
One of the greatest basketball players in U.S. history, JU alumnus Artis Gilmore became Special Assistant to the President at JU in December 2007. In that role, he represents the University and the athletics department in a community-relations capacity, and works with alumni and donor development.
Gilmore is a key component of JU’s 53 Campaign, which – named for the number on Gilmore’s JU basketball uniform – commemorates his historic basketball career and benefits the JU Scholarship Fund. He also serves as Jacksonville’s ambassador for sports, entertainment and physical fitness, working to attract more sporting events and trade shows to the city, and serving as a public health advocate.
Born Sept. 21, 1949, Artis Gilmore grew up in Chipley, Fla., and completed his high school education at Carver High School in nearby Dothan, Ala., where his athletic prowess was already stirring basketball fans from afar. Gilmore attended Gardner-Webb Junior College (now Gardner-Webb University), earning National Junior College Athletic Association honors in two seasons by averaging 22.5 points and grabbing 1,150 rebounds. In 1969, he enrolled at Jacksonville University and his two-year career became the “glory days” of Dolphin basketball and catapulted the University into the national spotlight.
The 1969-70 Dolphins, led by Gilmore’s 26.5 points and NCAA-leading 22.2 rebounds per game, finished the season with a spectacular 27-2 record and advanced to the NCAA championship game. The following season, the Dolphins gained another berth in the NCAA tournament, with Gilmore sparking the Dolphins to a 22-4 record and again leading the nation with 23.2 rebounds per game. Gilmore obtained an education degree from JU in 1972 and an honorary doctorate from JU in 1983. His No. 53 jersey is retired at both Jacksonville University and Gardner-Webb University; he is a JU Sports Hall of Fame charter member; and he still holds eight JU single-season or career basketball records.
Gilmore played 18 years in the American Basketball Association (ABA) and National Basketball Association (NBA). He was the first selection of the 1971 ABA draft by the Kentucky Colonels and was named the ABA's MVP and “Rookie of the Year,” and holds the ABA single-season blocked-shots record (422) and single-game rebound record (40). In 1975, Gilmore was the NBA re-entry draft top pick of the Chicago Bulls, whose public address announcer gave him the moniker “A-Train.” He spent 12 seasons in the NBA with Chicago (1976-82, 1987-88), San Antonio (1982-87) and Boston Celtics (1987-88), before playing one season in Italy.
Gilmore still holds the NBA record for field goal percentage (.599) and is among the career NBA leaders in blocked shots (3,178) and rebounds (16,330). Gilmore’s 24,941 points is No. 1 all-time among left-handers; he was an 11-time all-star; he was voted one of the top 50 players of the 20th century by The Sporting News; and he is an inductee in the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.
During his playing career and since he retired in 1989, Gilmore has been active in the community, particularly in children’s mentoring, literacy and character programs. He also has hosted golf tournaments to provide scholarships for minorities to attend JU, and he participated in U.S. military goodwill tours abroad. Gilmore also has owned an insurance adjusting firm and worked in project management for W.W. Gay Mechanical Contractors Inc. in Jacksonville.
Gilmore and his wife, Enola Gay, have three daughters, Shawna, Priya and Tifany; and two sons, Otis James and Artis II.
Katherine Thomas '13, Presidential Fellow
Katherine Thomas, of Bartow, Fla., graduated from Jacksonville University in May 2013 with a Bachelor of Science in political science. As a Presidential Fellow, she works to enhance the student experience. She was recognized with the University Award for Outstanding Service and Co-curricular Involvement, which goes each year to the graduate whose service to the university and participation has been exemplary. Among her many activities, Katherine has been a lead Peer Career Advisor, Admissions Student Ambassador and Residential Life Community Advisor. She was President of PanHellenic and of Delta Delta Delta sorority, Vice President of JUSA and a Student Alumni Association founding member.
Luka Vukadinovic '13, Presidential Fellow
Luka Vukadinovic, of Montenegro in Eastern Europe, graduated from Jacksonville University in May 2013 with a Bachelor of Arts in political science. As a Presidential Fellow, he works to enhance the student experience. He is delaying graduate school for a year, having already been accepted to the London School of Economics and University of Cambridge, among others. He was awarded JU’s Fred B. Noble Medal, given to students with the highest grade point average in their class.
Luka graduated summa cum laude with a 4.0 GPA, is an Omicron Delta Kappa national leadership honor society member and the JU College of Arts & Sciences Student of the Year. His many activities have included leadership posts in the Political Science Society, JUSA and International Student Association. He also worked for our IT Department and Residential Life, and interned at the United Nations in New York City.