Meet the Alumni Board President
Ashley Bailey-Chang earned a bachelor’s degree in political science in 2012. She is a corporate attorney for a global law firm and volunteers providing pro bono legal services for survivors of domestic abuse. She has served on the Alumni Advisory Board since 2017.
An Interview with the President
St. Thomas has an excellent reputation. I was particularly drawn to the smaller student body and class sizes, and the personalized attention and resources that this afforded to students. I also knew that I wanted to be close to home, and St. Thomas allowed me to experience campus life while still going home for Sunday family dinners and bringing my laundry home!
After I graduated from St. Thomas, I went to the University of Wisconsin-Madison for law school. I have spent my career as a corporate attorney and practice at the global law firm DLA Piper as an associate attorney. I assist clients with domestic and international transactions including mergers and acquisitions, joint ventures, corporate restructurings, as well as other general corporate matters. I am also a volunteer attorney with the Domestic Abuse Legal Advocacy Center, PSC, an organization that provides pro bono legal services to victims and survivors of domestic abuse.
I absolutely loved my time at St. Thomas and greatly appreciated the professors, advisors, mentors, and staff that helped create and facilitate a supportive environment for me to learn, grow, and set about my career path. With that in mind, I knew that I wanted to give back to do my part to help students have the same wonderful experience that I had, but it was a question of timing. When I graduated from law school and had a few years of legal practice under my belt, I finally felt that I had enough time to commit to the Alumni Board and have been involved ever since.
Among other responsibilities, the Alumni Board serves as the voice of the alumni population to further advance the mission and goals of St. Thomas. To meet this objective, it is critical that we not only celebrate the university's successes, but that we thoughtfully consider and address how we can better serve our students and community. I hope to continue to foster an environment that encourages and celebrates the diversity of thought, experiences and expertise needed to position the university, our students and our community to address the unprecedented and challenging times that we are currently facing.
When I think about what makes our alumni community special, two things immediately come to mind. First, Tommies are everywhere. We are business leaders, creatives, scientists, social workers and educators (to name a few). Second, Tommies want to help and give back. We dedicate our time, treasure, and talents to benefitting our communities, our organizations, and advancing the common good. Staying engaged with St. Thomas not only allows alumni to help the next generation of leaders and the St. Thomas community, but allows alumni to take advantage of the networking and professional development opportunities that are critical in career transitions and advancement.
I am proud of the commitment that St. Thomas has made to creating a just society that treats all humans with dignity, and I look forward to the formation of the Racial Justice Initiative. The Racial Justice Initiative “will be involved in facilitating research, exploring community partnerships, and encouraging dialogue and critical conversations around addressing the historical roots of racial inequality in the United States.” In addition to seeing the work of the Initiative, I am excited to see how the transition to D-I athletics will allow St. Thomas to further advance its mission and impact on a national scale.
What advice would you give to St. Thomas alumni looking to re-engage with the university?
There are unlimited ways to engage with the university and to be of service. It could be through your time (volunteering for or attending events), talent (mentoring, or sharing your stories, experiences or network) or treasure (providing financial support). However you choose to engage with St. Thomas as an alumnus or alumna, you will find it rewarding and fulfilling in both your career and your personal life.