Meet Your
Spalding Advancement Staff

Spalding Advacement Staff outside on campus

Chief Advancement Officer
Michael Buckman

Michael joined the Advancement team in August 2023 as Chief Advancement Officer. He has 17 years of experience in fundraising and previously served as the Director of Major Gifts at the Family Scholar House. Michael is a 1996 graduate of St. Xavier High School. He received his undergraduate degree from Murray State and a master's degree in Education Policy, Organization and Leadership from University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign. Michael is currently pursuing a doctorate at University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Michael is a 2017 graduate of Ignite Louisville. He is a member of Louisville Rotary and Louisville Forum. He also serves as a board member at Louisville Classical Academy. 

Jessie Ludwig headshot

Senior grants specialist
Mary Bainbridge

Mary joined the Advancement team in April 2021 bringing a wealth of knowledge in grant writing, fundraising, and nonprofit management. She previously served as the Manager of Community Partnerships at Actors Theatre of Louisville and as the Foundation and Grants Manager at the Speed Art Museum. She holds a B.A. in Art History from the University of Louisville, and earned the Justice Bier Award for the outstanding art history graduate.

Mary has served as a grant reviewer for the Kentucky Arts Council and is a member of the Association of Fundraising Professionals.

Favorite Place on SU campus: The pergolas next to the Egan Leadership Center. It’s a perfect shady spot to read a book or stop for lunch.

David Clark headshot

Manager of Advancement Services & Data Support
David Clark

David Clark joined the Spalding University Office of Advancement as Manager, Advancement Services and Data Support in 2014. He is a graduate of Centre College (BA, Dramatic Arts and English) and Southern Illinois University Carbondale (MFA, Playwriting) and has previously worked for the advancement and fundraising departments at Rhodes College and Actors Theatre of Louisville. He is a Certified Fund Raising Executive.

He is the co-founder and co-director of Derby City Playwrights, a Louisville group devoted to developing local writers and the father of three adorable, destructive children.

Favorite place on SU campus: The small, strange stairway, with an inaccessible chair that my son is convinced is a secret passage way to the vending machines.

Vay Davis  headshot

Manager of alumni relations
Vay Bailey

Vay joined the Advancement Team in November 2021. She is a two-time graduate of the University of Louisville with a B.S. in Organizational Learning and Leadership and a Masters in Higher Education Administration. She previously served as Living Learning Communities & Social Justice Program Coordinator at U of L.

Vay is committed and looking forward to serving and supporting the alumni base, being a resource, and keeping us connected!.

Favorite place on SU campus: The Spalding Mansion Courtyard is my favorite. I love the large tree in the center of the courtyard. The leaves on the tree are absolutely breathtaking on a fall day.

Steve Katsikas headshot

director, office of sponsored programs and research
Dr. Steve Katsikas

Dr. Steve Katsikas is a professor in the School of Professional Psychology and has been instrumental in Spalding University's efforts to secure grants that support student education and training.  He has developed his working knowledge of grants administration through the writing and running of four federal grants awarded to Spalding over the past 10 years (7.5 million dollars).  Many other departments, faculty, and staff at Spalding have been successful in securing external contracts, grants, and resources, necessitating the development of a new Office of Sponsored Programs and Research (OSPRe).  Dr. Katsikas is thrilled to be working with the Advancement team to continue to build supports for students and faculty.

Favorite place on SU campus: The first floor of Mansion, where I enjoy playing the piano when no one is around.

Jessie Ludwig headshot

Executive Assistant to the Chief Advancement Officer
Jessie Ludwig

Jessie became a part the Spalding team August of 2019 as the Executive Assistant to the Chief Advancement Officer and Chief Financial Officer. Prior to joining Spalding, Jessie spent five years as the Practice Manager for a private psychology practice. Jessie received a B.A. in English from Bellarmine University and an A.A. in Paralegal Studies from the University of Louisville. While at UofL, Jessie took an internship with the Center for Woman and Families as a Legal Advocate.

Favorite place on SU campus: The stained glass window above the staircase in the mansion. The stained glass is beautiful above the wooden staircase and carved features.