Member Spotlight: Jennifer Clary (B.A., ’91; CT, ’18; M.B.A., ’19) and Fred Jacobs (B.S., ’90)

CSU color guard
The CSU Marching Band's Color Guard at Hughes Stadium, late 1980s. Clary is in the top row, center.

By Ann Gill (M.A., ’76)

Many CSU couples are Alumni Association Life Members. Jennifer Clary and Fred Jacobs were annual members for a number of years, but when she received the MBA, she purchased their life membership “as a graduation present to myself.” They remain deeply involved with their alma mater.

Photographer posing with camera
Jennifer at the Rocky Mountain Showdown, 2018. Photo by Tony Villalobos

When an undergraduate, Jennifer served as flag twirler for the CSU Marching Band. It was a great way to meet people, allowing her to be “a face of the campus community to other students and the public.” The Band traveled to away games, including San Diego, El Paso, and Albuquerque, and marched at Disneyland. Janet and Allan Eddy (B.S., ’69; M.S., ’75) traveled with the Band and were known as “Mom” and “Dad.” Jennifer confided to her mother that someday she wanted to be Mom for the Marching Band.

Fred’s first memory of campus was attending the statewide student council conference; he “knew immediately that this is where I wanted to spend my college years.” Among his favorite memories from that time are Thursday nights at the Ramskeller, “shenanigans and camaraderie with my fellow Green Hall residents, including the infamous B1 Bun Run, and tailgating at Hughes – rain (snow) or shine!” He has been a football season ticket holder for 20 years.

Jennifer and Fred in 1987 web
Jennifer and Fred in 1987

Following graduation, Jennifer worked in marketing for Ultimate Support Systems, Inc., a manufacturer in the music and bicycle industries. When CSU began the remodel of Old Fort Collins High School to house its music, theatre, and dance programs, her interest was piqued. She had attended Fort Collins High and was involved in “every performing group possible,” so she applied for a part-time marketing position. She was hired, which with her full-time job meant working 60 hours a week. Exhausted after two years, she planned to resign the next day. Unbeknownst to her, the director of marketing had just quit, and Jennifer was asked to take on that position instead. She retains the position today, overseeing marketing, recruiting, and communications for the School of Music, Theatre, and Dance. She explains her longevity: “When I find something I love, I’m content in the best way and excited to go as deep as I can and be the best that I can in that space.” She expresses her love of the Marching Band, serving as their photographer and “mom.”

Couple with CAM the Ram
Jennifer and Fred at the 1870 Dinner with CAM the Ram.

Fred moved to Tempe after graduation, serving as assistant marketing director for the area’s largest shopping center developer. A few years later he became director of marketing for the Castle Rock Factory Shops, then joined Harrah’s marketing team at their Black Hawk and Central City casinos. He jumped at an opportunity to return to Fort Collins as vice president for marketing at First National Bank. Currently he is senior manager of media relations and sponsorships at Ent Credit Union. He is grateful his career path brought him back to a place he holds dear: “So many of the things that matter most to me today  ̶  great friends, the love of my life, a career in my field  ̶  can be traced back to my time at CSU.”

These two are proud to be CSU Rams. Fred explains: “Being lifetime members in the Alumni Association feels like we’re helping give future Rams that same chance to find and live their best lives.”