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Spoeri joins LU advancement team

Jeff SpoeriJeff Spoeri joins the staff of Lamar University as associate vice president for university advancement, bringing nearly 21 years of development and fund-raising experience to the position beginning June 30.

“Lamar University is a dynamic place with great potential,” Spoeri said. “All the right pieces are in place for the future.”

“I look forward to helping the advancement team move forward as we cultivate and enhance the considerable skills and talents that are already there,” he said.

Spoeri joins Lamar University from Florida Institute of Technology where he served as director of development and major and planned gift officer since September 2013. Along with serving as lead gift officer for FIT's College of Science and the College of Psychology and Liberal Arts, he was the university's primary contact for planned giving opportunities.

At FIT, he helped lead efforts in its recent comprehensive campaign that exceeded a $100 million goal by more than 23 percent. Spoeri personally managed a portfolio of 240 prospective donors.

His experience in advancement includes work for various Florida non-profits including Enzian and the Florida Film Festival, and the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Central and Northern Florida. In addition, he has extensive experience in development work and leadership for higher education institutions including Florida State University, Florida Atlantic University, Michigan State University, and Stetson University.

He began his advancement career in 1996 as interim executive director for Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia Fraternity and The Sinfonia Foundation (now the Sinfonia Educational Foundation). Before beginning his career in advancement, Spoeri was a practicing attorney in the St. Louis, Missouri area and, earlier, a high school and junior college teacher in Washington, D.C., Tennessee, and North Carolina.

Spoeri holds a law degree from Washington University in St. Louis and an M.Ed. from Vanderbilt University. His bachelor's degree is from the College of William and Mary.

A choral vocalist, Spoeri has held numerous leadership roles in Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia Fraternity, the nation’s largest and oldest music fraternity. He currently is a member of the Board of Trustees of the Sinfonia Educational Foundation, having previously served as president of the Board. 

A strong proponent of continuing professional education in the career field, he has been very active in the Council for the Advancement and Support of Education (CASE), with service in various official capacities in CASE District III and District V during his career.

Throughout his lifetime, Spoeri has been active in community organizations both choral and civic, including Leadership Brevard (Rockledge, Fla.), Leadership Winter Park (Winter Park, Fla.), and the Bach Festival Society of Winter Park, where he has sung as a first tenor in the 160-voice chorus and served as president of the choir committee in 2016-17.

This summer, he is traveling in Europe with his son, and joining in a 10-day choir tour with the Bach Festival Society of Winter Park to Prague, Leipzig and Berlin.

In 2006, Spoeri appeared on the television game show Jeopardy! for six shows, winning five and earning $105,000. In 2007, he returned for the “Tournament of Champions” appearing on two shows, earning $10,000, and is a member of the “Jeopardy! Hall of Fame.”

He has two children: a son, Drew, 17, and a daughter, Kendall, 11.