Professional News

Long-time government relations, education professional joins UK University Relations team

Jennifer Fraker

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Dec. 8, 2023) — A long-time government relations and education professional is joining the University of Kentucky’s University Relations team as its director of government relations.

Jennifer Fraker is currently assistant vice president of government relations and P-20 policies and programs for the Kentucky Council on Postsecondary Education. She will begin her duties as director of government relations at UK on Jan. 2, coinciding with the start of the General Assembly’s biennial budget session.

At UK, Fraker will work closely with Bart Hardin, director of government relations, and Vice President for University Relations Tom Harris in representing the university’s interests in Frankfort and with policymakers.

“I am excited to be joining the outstanding team assembled by President Eli Capilouto and going to work on behalf of my alma mater, the University of Kentucky,” Fraker said. “UK’s mission to advance this state — its education, its health and its economy — has never been more important or vital. Our work with policymakers on institutional priorities is a critical part of how UK can and will advance Kentucky.”

“Jennifer is highly regarded among policymakers and education leaders for her acumen and understanding of education and government,” Harris said. “In joining Bart Hardin, we have a formidable team, with decades of experience in Frankfort, government and higher education.”

Fraker is well-suited for her new position at UK. In her current role with CPE, Fraker serves as legislative liaison and educational policy advisor. She works closely with policymakers at state and national levels as well as the Legislative Research Commission (LRC), the governor’s office and other state agencies and alternatives.

Fraker also previously worked with the Kentucky Department of Education as its executive director and interim director of government relations, among other positions, and as a high school teacher in Oldham and Fayette counties. She has a bachelor’s degree in political science and master’s and doctoral degrees in education from UK.

As the state’s flagship, land-grant institution, the University of Kentucky exists to advance the Commonwealth. We do that by preparing the next generation of leaders — placing students at the heart of everything we do — and transforming the lives of Kentuckians through education, research and creative work, service and health care. We pride ourselves on being a catalyst for breakthroughs and a force for healing, a place where ingenuity unfolds. It's all made possible by our people — visionaries, disruptors and pioneers — who make up 200 academic programs, a $476.5 million research and development enterprise and a world-class medical center, all on one campus.   

In 2022, UK was ranked by Forbes as one of the “Best Employers for New Grads” and named a “Diversity Champion” by INSIGHT into Diversity, a testament to our commitment to advance Kentucky and create a community of belonging for everyone. While our mission looks different in many ways than it did in 1865, the vision of service to our Commonwealth and the world remains the same. We are the University for Kentucky.