Meet Krista Abner!

Krista Abner
Academic Advisor

Hello! I am from Versailles, KY. I graduated from Eastern Kentucky University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Public Relations in 2009 and a Master’s Degree in Student Personnel Services in 2011. Upon completion of my Master’s, I got a job in Residence Life at the University of Alabama at Birmingham where I worked as a Residence Life Coordinator for a little over a year. Birmingham was great, but nothing compares to the Bluegrass State, so I moved back to Central Kentucky in 2012 with my (then) fiancé.  I got married to my wonderful husband, Russell, in May 2013, and I started working in A&S in June 2013. We have two sweet, silly pups, Walter (a 3 year old Goldendoodle), and Olive (a 2 year old Rhodesian Ridgeback/Lab mix).

Meet Nick Thelen!

Nick Thelen

I was born in Cincinnati, Ohio, in Bethesda Hospital, but my family resided in Northern Kentucky at the time (and still does). I grew up playing in the backyard with my sister and our animals—sometimes a dog, sometimes cats—and reading fantastical stories like Harry Potter and A Wrinkle In Time. My father encouraged my interests in sports, mainly soccer, while my mother cultivated my artistic side. We are a close family growing closer as the years push on, and one day I hope to be as helpful to them as they were to me.

I chose UK for a few reasons, one of which was the scholarship I had received. The second reason would be that, when I walked out of the Visitor Center and looked at the steps leading further, I envisioned myself taking those steps. I liked that feeling very much.

Meet Jennifer Allen!


Jennifer Allen

Co-Director, Hive. Director of Communications & Creative Services


1. What do you like to do in your spare time? I love to hang out with my husband, Ben, and our boys (ages 10 and 8) and see what adventures we can find – hiking, baseball, swimming, camping, etc. I love photography, reading and crafting. If I have free time, you’ll usually find me crafting, sewing, baking, reading or planning a birthday party! I can’t forget about movies – we are also a family that loves watching movies.

2. What is your favorite movie or book? I can never pick just one favorite of anything. I’m an avid reader of a wide variety of books. My favorite would be fiction and lately I’ve been into dystopian novels. I just finished reading “We Are Called to Rise” and “The Giver.” I’m now reading “Station Eleven.” “The Martian” is my favorite movie I’ve watched recently.

Brad's Blurb

Dear A&S Staff,

Dean Kornbluh will be holding an all staff meeting On Monday, December 21, 9-11 a.m., in the Classroom Building Room 106. 

The College is planning the 4th annual Night of Creativity for Monday, January 4.  There will be more information to come about this event in future newsletters.    

The 2015 Terry B. Mobley development awards ceremony was held on November 12, in the King Alumni House.  These awards recognize and reward individuals who have demonstrated outstanding performance and professional achievement.  At the event A&S Staff member, Laura Sutton, was awarded the Professional Achievement Award. This award is presented to a professional staff member who has UK development tenure of five or more years, who demonstrates excellent work performance and has achieved great success and impact as a fund raiser.  Laura was one of four UK staff members recognized with an award this year and she joins an impressive group of 17 previous Professional Achievement Award recipients.   Congratulations Laura! 

Leadership Forum Notes 2015

My Dear A&S Colleagues,

Please, feel free to use or pass along my notes from the 2015 Leadership Forum talks that were streamed last week.  Many of you may have attended, but for those of you who were unable to attend or watch the live-streams, I hope this is helpful!  The talks were very interesting and relevant to the work we do.

Most kind regards,

Erin Norton Miller, Department Manager, Appalachian Studies, UK Appalachian Center, Arts & Sciences,, 859-257-4852


Brad's Blurb

Dear A&S Staff,

The A&S Culture Committee recently provided a summary of the 2015 staff survey results.   A total of 112 surveys were completed by the A&S staff.  The committee continues to discuss ways to expand current initiatives and implement future ideas that focus on areas of the 2015 feedback.  If you would like to learn more about the committee and its goals, or would like to become a member of committee, contact either Christine Levitt or Erin Norton-Miller.   The trends when compared with previous surveys are overall positive with a few areas that indicate the need for improvement.  To see the results go to the Culture Committee badge in this week’s A&S newsletter.   

UK Women’s Forum Conference

This year I was urged by two mutual friends at UK to make sure I signed up for the UK Kentucky Women’s Forum Conference.  Just getting started in a new role, I was concerned I wouldn’t have time for an entire day away from the office, but I signed up and made plans to go.  Boy was I glad I did! The day was wonderfully orchestrated with a keynote speech from our own Kirsten Turner to start things off.  The theme was “Memoir” and Kirsten stayed on theme as she relayed an impactful “moment in time” to us and encouraged each of us to seek and be ‘network resources’ during times of crises.  It was especially heart-warming to hear from our own Chief of Staff as she expressed her heart for fitting work into our busy, complex lives.  Another A&S staff member in attendance, Jacqueline Burke said, “I really enjoyed Kirsten Turner’s key note speech.  She is so good at connecting with whoever she is speaking with, one on one or to an entire group.  It really spoke to me as a working parent.  Two thumbs up!”

Meet Linda Elmore!

Hi Everybody!  My name is Linda Elmore.  I am the Financial Coordinator in the Patterson Office Tower IBU.  I grew up in San Jose, California.  I taught elementary and Middle School out in the desert near Palm Springs for 9 years.  I moved to Kentucky looking for a new adventure.  I met my husband and we were married a couple years later.  We enjoy watching movies, eating out, walking, gardening and traveling.  We have three crazy cats that keep us busy.  I came to UK in 2012 after working at Urban Active in their accounting department for 9 years.   I originally worked in the UK Medical Center in Pediatrics with their grants and came to Arts & Sciences when my position was eliminated because of an IBU reorganization.


1.       What do you like to do in your spare time?

I like to read self-help books and work on my family genealogy.  I have 700 people in my family trees that I have identified so far.  It’s time to travel to France, Germany and Ireland to find more records of my ancestors.

Student Staff Spotlight

My name is Kimberly Kuharik and I’m a non-traditional student majoring in Business Management. My husband, Christopher, and I have lived in Georgetown, KY for ten years. I was born in Augusta, GA, but I’ve lived in several different states: Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, and Louisiana. My father worked in the horse industry for a while, and we travelled quite a bit. When pressed about my childhood home, I answer Charleston, SC because most of my happier childhood memories involve that city. I love animals, all kinds, and we have two cats, Tigger and Calhoun, who we adopted from animal shelters. My hobbies are varied and depend greatly on my mood. I’m a very creative person. I’ve experimented a bit through the years: painting, knitting, singing, writing, jewelry-making, cooking, woodworking, etc.

I chose UK because my husband is a UK Alumni, a graduate of the College of Engineering. I felt by choosing UK, I was creating a family tradition.

Meet Rick Mullins!

Hey Everybody!  My name is Rick Mullins and I’m a Lead Budget Analyst in the ScienceIBU.  I was born in Gainesville, on the campus of the University of Florida.  My parents must’ve realized while I was a toddler that I was destined to spend my life on a campus much further north.  We moved to Somerset, KY (about 75 minutes south of Lexington) when I was 2 years old.  I moved to Lexington in 1999 and began working as a Student Worker here at UK.  This is my second go ‘round with A&S and I couldn’t be happier to be back. 



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