Chief of Staff and University General Counsel
Nicole Fournier Gelston was appointed General Counsel to the University on May 25, 2018 by President Susan Herbst. As UConn’s chief legal officer, she oversees the University’s legal affairs and manages the Office of the General Counsel. The Office of the General Counsel provides legal representation and guidance on the wide range of legal issues impacting institutions of higher education. Nicole was appointed Chief of Staff by President Thomas Katsouleas on August 24, 2020. As Chief of Staff, Nicole supports the goals and objectives of the University president by providing broad strategic, management and operational coordination to members of the Senior Administrative Team and other direct reports of the President.
Nicole joined the University in 2010. She has served in the Office of the General Counsel since its creation in 2012, providing legal advice and counsel on the myriad of legal and compliance issues that affect institutions of higher education, including faculty matters, student affairs, Title IX, ADA, personnel issues and litigation. Nicole has also had the opportunity to work closely with administration, faculty, and staff, as well as with many of our state partners.
Before joining the University, Nicole was a partner in the New Haven law firm of Lynch, Traub, Keefe & Errante, where she practiced for fourteen years. Nicole handled complex civil and criminal matters and represented municipalities, individuals and businesses in state and federal court. Nicole also briefed and argued civil and criminal appeals before the Connecticut Appellate and Supreme Courts and the U.S. Second Circuit Court of Appeals