Barbara Siska, CSEP
For more than 25 years, Barb has worked in the events industry producing corporate, non-profit and social events. Her background consists of facility rental and events management in many of Chicago’s most notable museums, such as the Museum of Science and Industry, the John G. Shedd Aquarium, the Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum, and the Chicago History Museum. Barb has also worked for Berkshire Hathaway-owned Pampered Chef as their U.S. Meetings Manager. At Pampered Chef, Barb planned and executed more than 12 meetings a year, including a national conference for nearly 10,000 attendees, as well as a leadership conference for 3,000. She traveled the U.S. extensively, executing meetings and scouting future locations.
In her role as Executive Director of the Office of University Events and Ceremonies at the University of Chicago, Barb serves as the lead event planner for all Office of the President, Office of the Provost, and other campus partner events. She manages a team of seven that collectively orchestrates and executes more than 100 University events and conferences each year, including the annual Convocation ceremonies, which welcomes more than 18,000 guests to campus each June.
Barb has served on the International Live Events Association (ILEA) board as Midwest Regional Vice President and on the local Chicago Chapter as President along with holding several other board roles since 2016.
Senior Associate Director
Katelyn is a Senior Associate Director at the University of Chicago, where she is responsible for the planning and operational oversight of the University’s annual Convocation ceremony. In addition to Convocation, Katelyn coordinates several other University events as part of the Office of University Events and Ceremonies team.
Prior to joining the University of Chicago, Katelyn worked at Northwestern Pritzker School of Law as an Assistant Director of Alumni Engagement where she planned, produced, and executed engagement events and programs for the Law School community.
Katelyn holds a bachelor’s degree in professional communications from Elmhurst College.
Erin Hammons is an Associate Director at the University of Chicago, where she is responsible for the management and execution of events within the Office of the President, the Office of the Provost and other University departments. Erin also assists with the production of the University’s annual Convocation ceremony as a part of the Office of University Events and Ceremonies team.
Prior to joining the University of Chicago, Erin worked at Loyola University Chicago School of Law as an Associate Director of Alumni Engagement & Special Events where she coordinated the planning and execution of the school’s alumni engagement programming as well as large conferences and symposia.
Erin holds a bachelor’s degree in Public Relations & Advertising from Loyola University Chicago.
Tiffany is an Event Specialist at the University of Chicago where she manages event planning, logistics and vendor coordination, as well as on-site event production for several events with the Office of University Events and Ceremonies. She also provides support for the team’s planning of the University’s annual Convocation.
Prior to joining the University of Chicago, Tiffany worked at PAWS Chicago as a Special Events Coordinator where she planned the annual signature events, fundraising to save the lives of homeless dogs and cats. She was also administratively involved in supporting their Development Board and Professional Board.
Tiffany holds a Master of Health Sciences degree from the MGH Institute of Health Professions and a bachelor’s degree in Biological Sciences from the University of Chicago.
Vanessa is an Event Specialist for the University of Chicago where she is responsible for providing event administration support to the team. In addition, Vanessa supports the Office of the President, Office of the Provost, and other campus partners with the creation of invitations, guest list management, and on-site event support.
Prior to joining the University of Chicago, Vanessa worked for Bulley and Andrews Construction Firm where she took on a variety of roles within Accounting, Human Resources, Marketing and Office Management. Within each of these departments, she oversaw essential functions including event and meeting coordination.
Vanessa holds a bachelor’s degree in Communications and Media Studies from Concordia University Chicago.
Margaret is an Event Specialist at the University of Chicago, where she provides event support within the Office of the President, Office of the Provost, and other University partners. She also assists the team with the planning of the University’s annual Convocation weekend.
Prior to joining the University of Chicago, Margaret was the Associate Director of Alumni Relations at Dominican University in River Forest, IL. She was responsible for planning and executing engaging alumni events, aimed at further enhancing the relationship between the university and its alumni.
Margaret holds a Master of Business Administration from Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management and a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.
Pilar is an Event Administrator at the University of Chicago, where she works within the Office of University Events and Ceremonies’ List Management Team, providing support and materials needed at events. She also assists with the planning of the University’s annual Convocation Ceremony.
Prior to joining the University of Chicago, Pilar worked as an Event Assistant at Vanderbilt University’s Hoogland Undergraduate Business Program. She supported the program in the creative planning process and execution of events, with stakeholders including students, faculty, and industry professionals.
Pilar holds a Bachelor of Science in Human and Organizational Development from Peabody College at Vanderbilt University.