Meet the Staff


Renee Nicole Allen
Director of Academic Success

Phone: 865-974-6807
rallen44@utk.edu

Renee Nicole Allen joined UT Law in August 2016. As director of Academic Success, she develops and teaches programs at the College of Law designed to enhance the analytical skills required for success in law school, on the bar exam, and in the practice of law. Her research and teaching interests include educational psychology, andragogy, Millennials, critical race theory, and social justice.

Prior to joining UT Law, Allen was a faculty member at Florida A&M University College of Law where she served as the acting director of the Academic Success and Bar Preparation Program. Allen has practiced family law in a metro Atlanta law firm and is a member of the Georgia Bar.

Admissions

Begin your legal education journey with UT Law.

Admissions

Begin your legal education journey with UT Law.

Admissions Staff

Sarah Busse

Director

E-mail: sbusse@utk.edu
Phone: 865-974-4131

Sarah Busse joined UT Law in July 2016. As director of admissions and financial aid, she is responsible for the planning, management, and implementation of law student recruitment, admissions, and financial aid. She reports directly to the dean and is responsible for the supervision of the admissions staff. She also frequently coordinates and communicates with the Admissions Committee.

Busse formerly served as the director of admissions programs and recruitment for Cornell University Law School, where she had been a member of the admissions team since 2004. Prior to that, Busse worked in recruitment for Cornell Law’s Career Services Office and in communications for Cornell’s Samuel Curtis Johnson Graduate School of Management.

Frances Nash

Associate Director

E-mail: fnash1@utk.edu
Phone: 865-974-4131

Frances Nash joined the University of Tennessee in 2010. Before moving to the College of Law, she was the associate director at UT’s One Stop Student Services and also served as assistant to the dean of the College of Arts and Sciences.

Prior to moving to Knoxville, she lived in Austin, Texas, where she worked in the registrar’s office at the University of Texas and was a student services representative at the University of Texas System’s UT TeleCampus. 

Celisse Lambert

Assistant Director

E-mail: clambert@utk.edu
Phone: 865-974-4131

Celisse Lambert joined UT Law in February 2018. As assistant director of admissions, she recruits, counsels, and advises potential students on the application process, the basics of financial aid, and the benefits of attending UT Law. Additionally, she oversees the recruiting plan to attract a diverse student body nationally and locally, while also finding new ways to reach applicants digitally with the use of social media and/or on-line marketing.

Before joining UT, Celisse was in general practice at a law firm outside of Philadelphia. She also worked at HSBC Bank as an anti-money laundering and counter terrorist financing investigator.

Carolyn Dossett

Senior Admissions Specialist, Recruiting Coordinator

E-mail: cdossett@utk.edu
Phone: 865-974-4131

Alumni and Donors

College of Law alumni are partners in our ongoing efforts to provide quality legal education.

Alumni and Donors

College of Law alumni are partners in our ongoing efforts to provide quality legal education.

Alumni and Development Staff
Shafer, Andrew

Andrew Shafer

Senior Director of Advancement

E-mail: ashafer@vols.utk.edu
Phone: 865-974-6857

Andrew Shafer joined the College of Law in the summer of 2020. In this role, he oversees the College of Law Advancement Office staff, leads the college’s fundraising efforts and oversees alumni relations.

Shafer is a two-time graduate of the University of Tennessee, and has more than 10 years of experience as an advancement and leadership professional. 

He is formerly the planned giving manager for the Nashville Symphony Orchestra, the chief advancement officer of the Missionary Society of St. Paul the Apostle in New York and the vice president for advancement at Aquinas College in Nashville.

He also worked in alumni and development roles at the University of Tennessee between 2007 and 2012, managing development efforts for the College of Communication and Information.

Stephanie Neal

Director of Advancement

E-mail: sneal13@utk.edu
Phone: 865-974-2502

Stephanie Neal joined UT Law as the director of advancement in Fall 2017. In this role, Neal works with the dean of the College of Law and the senior director of advancement along with faculty, fellow staff, and external constituents to support the traditions and mission of the College of Law. Her primary focus is major gift fundraising. 

Neal practiced law for many years before seeking philanthropic support for nonprofit organizations, receiving her juris doctor in 1980 from Thomas M. Cooley Law School and her LL.M. in taxation in 1998 from the University of Florida.

Before joining UT Law, she worked in healthcare philanthropy serving as the director of major and planned gifts for Porter Hills Foundation in Grand Rapids, Mich. She also focused on gift planning opportunities in the arts and culture community at the Grand Rapids Art Museum.

Ellen Cole

Director of Advancement

E-mail: ecole@utk.edu
Phone: 865-974-6704

Ellen Cole joined UT Law in Spring 2017. She focuses on raising funds for the college through major gift fundraising and is also responsible for the college’s annual giving campaign. She supports the alumni council and several special events throughout the year, including the College of Law class reunions and the Julian Blackshear Jr. Scholarship Gala.

Cole is a UT alumna, receiving her bachelor’s degree in history in 1999 and her master’s degree in communications in 2004. She has worked as the Children’s Miracle Network program director for East Tennessee Children’s Hospital and worked in development at the hospital from 2005 to 2017. She also worked in development at the East Tennessee Historical Society.

Rynn Young

Coordinator of Advancement

E-mail: cdupes@utk.edu
Phone: 865-974-6691

Rynn Young joined the College of Law in 2006 and the Office of Advancement in 2011. In her role as coordinator of advancement she leads the college’s donor relations and stewardship programs. She is responsible for the law school’s donor communications strategy and its regional alumni events. She also provides support to the college’s board members and volunteers.

Young is a two-time graduate of the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, with a bachelor’s degree in English and a master’s degree in communication and information. In addition to her work at the college, Young is actively involved in the community through the Knox County Foster Care Review Board and the League of Women Voters of Knoxville/Knox County serving as president of the latter.

Contact Us

Alumni and Development
1505 W. Cumberland Ave.
Knoxville, Tennessee 37996

Phone: 865-974-6691
Office:
 Suite 248
E-mail: 
law@utk.edu

Contact Us

Alumni and Development
1505 W. Cumberland Ave.
Knoxville, Tennessee 37996

Phone: 865-974-6691
Office:
 Suite 248
E-mail: 
law@utk.edu