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Jewel Coffman appointed interim director of MU Conference Office


Curt Wohleber
University of Missouri Extension
Phone: 573-882-5409

Photo available for this release:

Jewel Coffman, interim director of the MU Conference Office.

Credit: MU Conference Office

Published: Thursday, April 11, 2013

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Jewel Coffman, 573-882-9555

COLUMBIA, Mo.–Jewel Coffman is the new interim director of the University of Missouri Conference Office. She was appointed by Michael Ouart, assistant vice provost and director, MU Extension.

Part of MU Extension’s Continuing Education program, the MU Conference Office provides comprehensive planning and management services for meetings, workshops and other events.

Coffman started with the MU Conference Office in 1995, first as a conference coordinator and later as assistant director to Joy Millard, who earlier this year was appointed interim assistant vice provost for MU Extension.

Coffman, who has a master’s degree in higher and adult education from MU, says that even in the networked world of the 21st century, face-to-face events remain a vital tool for transmitting knowledge and ideas, and are a primary means of fostering collaboration and exploration.

“We let meeting organizers focus on content by handling details—things like budgeting, contract negotiation, menu selection, name badges and proceedings, all the way to final reconciliation of income and expenditures,” Coffman says.

The MU Conference Office works on about 90 events each year, ranging from high-profile gatherings of world-renowned researchers, entrepreneurs and leaders to youth programs that might represent a high school student’s first visit to a college campus.

Coffman says the office’s experienced professional coordinators understand that clients have different goals and resources.

“We work very hard to tailor a budget appropriate for the conference,” she says.

The office’s clientele includes academic and administrative departments within MU as well as state and federal agencies, private industry, not-for-profits, faith-based groups, and youth and athletic associations.

The MU Conference Office doesn’t just help with on-campus events. It has helped organize events throughout Missouri, across the country, and as far away as Italy. The office is currently involved in a forthcoming event that will be held in China.

For more information about the MU Conference Office, go to or call 573-882-4349.