Jessica Tormey serves as both Chief of Staff and interim Vice President for University Relations. Tormey provides key leadership and strategic vision to establish top priorities and activities for the Offices of the President and University Relations. She leads the design and execution of all messaging and branding related to media and legislative outreach, applying an insightful, politically savvy lens to highly complex and sensitive issues. Tormey also performs as a trusted advisor to the President and operates as the primary liaison between all major stakeholders such as the Board of Regents, the Executive Committee, chancellors, legislators, business leaders, and donors. She oversees a workplace committed to excellence and output, providing day-to-day management of the President’s executive team, hiring, and budget, in addition to coordinating all Presidential events and managing the supervision of the Brittingham House presidential residence. Additionally, she serves on all of the President’s key advisor committees, and major accomplishments during her tenure include the management of the first comprehensive advocacy plan in the last decade, as well as the role of lead project manager for UW System strategic framework, a two-year project recently unveiled as UW 2020FWD: Moving Wisconsin and the World Forward.
Tormey formerly worked for UW Colleges and UW-Extension as the Assistant Vice Chancellor for Communications and External Relations. She previously worked in government relations for UW System, serving as a liaison with the state legislature and state agencies. Earlier, she had served as Chief of Staff for 10 years for Wisconsin State Sen. Alberta Darling.
Tormey is a graduate of UW-La Crosse, where she earned a bachelor’s degree in political science and public administration. She completed a master’s degree in administrative leadership from UW-Milwaukee, with an emphasis in higher education administration, in December 2014.