UF presents first annual Win Phillips Town Gown Relations Awards

A new award to honor and celebrate the connections between the University of Florida and the greater Gainesville community was presented Friday at the UF Board of Trustees meeting.

The Win Phillips Town Gown Relations Awards, named in honor of UF’s long-time former vice president for research and most recently executive chief of staff, recognized individuals and organizations that have made significant contributions in strengthening relationships between the two entities.

“The University of Florida values our town-gown relationships,” said Mark Kaplan, vice president for government and community relations. “We know that a preeminent university is supported by a strong partnership with its community.”

Charlie Lane, senior vice president and chief operating officer, presented the award for a government agency or official to the Florida Department of Transportation and the City of Gainesville for making the streets adjacent to campus safer and more walkable for students, employees and the community.

A group of people in suits pose for photo.


District Director of Transportation Operations Travis Humphries accepted the award on behalf of FDOT and Mayor-elect Harvey Ward accepted it on behalf of the City of Gainesville.

A group of people in suits pose for photo.


Heather White, vice president for student life, presented the award designated for faculty and staff to Nora Kilroy, director of the UF Office of Off Campus Life, for enhancing the livability and safety of Gainesville neighborhoods.

A group of people in suits pose for photo.


Kaplan presented the award for a community member to Eric Godet, chief executive officer of the Greater Gainesville Chamber, for being a supporter of UF programs, efforts and economic development.

Win Phillips, who spent 35 years maintaining UF’s bonds with local government and businesses, played a key role in creating Gainesville’s Innovation District, the UF technology licensing program and UF Innovate in order to cultivate economic transfer in Gainesville.

“This award focuses not on Dr. Phillips’ academic and administrative accomplishments but on his 35 years of commitment to building and maintaining relationships with local governments and with the business community,” Kaplan said. “He has led the way in nurturing our town-gown mission.”

Blake Trauschke December 12, 2022