Gators giving back

UF President Kent Fuchs and Kim Cruce

It’s no surprise that Gators are known for their generosity. What better time to shed light on their efforts than the beginning of the holiday season?

This fall, the Office of the CFO secured a $1,500 donation for the Aid-a-Gator fund, which was set up to assist faculty and staff impacted by Hurricane Irma. The generous donation came from the New England chapter of the National Association of Educational Procurement (NAEP), which originally reached out to Procurement Director Lisa Deal, a past-president of the NAEP. The group, which typically raises funds for member scholarships, decided to donate half of its proceeds this year to hurricane victim efforts and found a worthy cause in Aid-a-Gator.

At a recent thank-you luncheon, the office was also recognized for achieving the highest percentage of participation for the 2016 UF Campaign for Charities fundraiser. Financial analyst Kim Cruce accepted the award on the division’s behalf.

Cruce, who has been coordinating the division’s annual giving since 2010, says her role for the campaign is like that of a cheerleader. It’s her responsibility to be enthusiastic about the campaign and to educate employees about why it’s more important to give to the campaign rather than directly to the charities. (The charities receive a greater amount of money this way since undesignated UFCC donations are divvied up among all of the charities.)

“Our strength is in numbers,” said Cruce. “If everybody gave a little bit, it would be a lot.”

She’s most passionate about meeting the needs of children and families in the area and helping them get back on their feet.

“Everyone falls down on their luck,” she said. “We can give them hope for a better tomorrow.”

Ways to give back

If you’re looking for ways to give this holiday season, University Disbursement Services is currently hosting its 12th Annual Holiday Food Drive. During the past 11 years, the team has donated nearly 27,000 food items to support local charities fighting to end hunger and help local families enjoy the holidays. This year, donations will go to Gainesville’s own FOOD4KIDS and the Bread of the Mighty Food Bank. Canned and dry food goods donations are being accepted through Dec. 15 in Elmore Hall (in the Disbursements suite).

Disbursement Services is also holding a bake sale to further raise funds for charity. Treat yourself to some sweets for a great cause in Elmore Hall on Monday, Dec. 11. If you would like to provide baked goods for the sales or contribute funds for supplies, contact Debbie Anderson or Tammy Frost.

You can also support UF’s Field and Fork Food Pantry—which assists students, faculty and staff who need help finding healthy food for themselves and their families—by hosting a food drive or donating one or more of the items on its wishlist.

Share your good deeds with UF at Work

Want to share how you or a colleague is contributing to the Gator Good this holiday season? Email us at