Gail Hurley to retire from Penn State Auxiliary and Business Services

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Gail Ann Hurley, associate vice president for Auxiliary and Business Services (A&BS), will retire from Penn State on June 30, 2017.

Hurley has served in various positions within Penn State’s Student Affairs, Residence Life, and A&BS for more than 32 years. In her most recent role, Hurley provides vision, leadership, strategic planning and oversight for seven administrative units: the Bryce Jordan Center, Hospitality Services, Housing and Food Services, Multimedia and Print Center, Procurement Services, Transportation Services, and University Park Airport.

Most recently, she led an ambitious initiative to improve residence hall housing at University Park and several Commonwealth Campuses, through renovations or new construction. Throughout the process, while gathering input from various stakeholders, Hurley made it a priority to ask students for feedback.

Student engagement is a recurring theme throughout Hurley’s career. After transitioning from Student Affairs, which involved daily interaction with students, she worked to bring students and directors together for meetings each semester and encouraged A&BS units to meet with students frequently and create internships and part-time employment opportunities.

“Interacting and working with students has always brought me joy and satisfaction,” Hurley said. “Auxiliary and Business Services is a collection of support units, but at the end of the day, we work in higher education. Whether you’re buying test tubes or running a fleet vehicle or providing food or running a hotel, it’s about the students. When my job no longer involved advising the Association of Residence Hall Students or the National Residence Hall Honorary, or dealing with a crisis in a residence hall at two or three in the morning, I made sure to find ways to engage with students.”

Hurley’s dedication to students was recognized recently, when the Penn State On-Campus Mentor Alumni Interest Group established an endowed scholarship in her name. The Gail A. Hurley Leadership Scholarship will recognize and provide a stipend to students who are actively engaged in leadership and service within residence life at Penn State.

The group established the scholarship because Hurley was an important advocate, mentor, and friend to many of them during their student leadership experiences at Penn State.

“Especially noteworthy about Gail’s career is she has always been dedicated to nurturing, encouraging and mentoring both student leaders and her staff members,” said Diane Andrews, assistant vice president for Housing, Food Services, and Residence Life. “There are so many people who credit Gail and share how their Penn State experience and careers as well as their lives have been impacted by knowing and working with her. Throughout her career, Gail has shown an unwavering commitment to making Penn State a better place for the students, employees and customers she serves.”

Reflecting on her Penn State career, Hurley is struck by the hard work and professionalism she has witnessed throughout A&BS. “It’s been inspiring to witness the many dedicated professionals behind the scenes—to see their expertise and the selfless way they work together as a team,” Hurley said. “Most people don’t realize what it takes to get the mail delivered, to procure a piece of equipment, to host a beautiful wedding at one of our properties, or to bring a concert to the Bryce Jordan Center. The people that I have had the absolute privilege of working with give their all.”

Throughout many changes in 32 years — changes in process, organization, delivery mechanisms, and technology — Hurley is proud of the accomplishments of A&BS staff as they work to collaborate, share resources, and find new efficiencies. “Penn State is a big place — people come and go. What remains the same is something I noticed from the day I first set foot on this campus: People believe in this place and they work hard to contribute to its success. The loyalty our employees and alumni have for this place, even in the most difficult times, hasn’t wavered.”

David Gray, senior vice president for Finance & Business, has witnessed the respect Hurley has garnered in her years at Penn State. “Throughout her Penn State career, Gail has devoted herself to excellence in service to students, faculty and staff,” he said. “She is admired by all with whom she has come in contact. While her accomplishments are too numerous to mention, I believe her crowning achievement has been the planning for — and now the execution of — the multi-year renewal of Penn State’s largest residence hall areas. Students will benefit from her vision and dedication for decades to come.”

Stan Latta, former assistant vice president for Housing, Food Services, and Residence Life, has worked with Hurley for most of her Penn State career. “I can think of no other professional with whom I've worked who has had a greater impact upon the quality of student life and the student experience at Penn State than Gail,” he said. “Her commitment to students and the professional development of her staff are second to none. Her thoughtful guidance, caring and mentoring have contributed to the success of so many professionals within higher education.”

“It was a pleasure working for and with Gail,” added Rich Pearce, former assistant vice president for A&BS. “I am truly blessed to have her as a colleague and friend. Her leadership of A&BS has been extraordinary. Penn State is a much better place because of all that Gail has done.”

For Hurley, retirement from Penn State doesn’t mean goodbye. “I can’t call myself an alum but I feel like one,” she said, “and I want to figure out how I can continue to be a part of Penn State, on a volunteer basis, in retirement. This place has been very good to me, and I don’t think I’m finished giving yet.”

Last Updated May 05, 2017