Sarah Ciccone, Director

IMG_2880.JPGSarah Ciccone joined the University Events team in December of 2016 as Event Manager. Sarah has been working at James Madison University since 2012. Her experience began in the Center for Global Engagement, formally Office of International Programs. She started as an Administrative Assistant but was promoted to a Coordinator within the department. While Coordinator for Study Abroad, Sarah planned the annual Summit Series conference, managed the Cross-Cultural Program at JMU during the summer which welcomed international students to campus, and assisted with international visiting scholars.

In June 2019, Sarah was promoted to Associate Director and then in June 2023, promoted to Director. Prior to joining JMU, Sarah worked at Virginia Mennonite Retirement Community as Life Enrichment Coordinator for over five years. She planned activities and events for supportive living residents, working with many dementia residents. Some activities that she coordinated included outings, recitals, and socials.

In University Events, she is the lead on commencement exercises, oversees departmental operations, and plans and executes high profile presidential events. In addition, she oversees the departmental budget and day-to-day operations. She is responsible for university building ground breakings and dedication ceremonies. She oversees the Presidential Suite for home Football games, supports Board of Visitor events, Faculty and Staff Service Recognitions, senior class events, Commencement Expo, student events, and other presidential events.

Shortly after beginning her time at JMU, Sarah joined the Adult Degree Program as a part-time student while working full-time. She continued her studies and graduated with her Bachelor's in Individualized Studies in May 2020. Her concentration is Business Management and Human Resource Management. Her goal is to join a graduate program at JMU and obtain her master’s degree.

She has served on the JMU Campus-Wide Accessibility Committee during academic years 2020-2021, 2021-2022, 2022-2023, and 2023-2024. In addition, she has served on many Request for Proposal committees through Procurement and search committees. She served as the Advisor for the Student Group, CHAARG (Changing Health, Attitudes, + Actions To Recreate Girls) for the Academic Year 2021-2022.

In Sarah’s free time, she enjoys spending time with her two daughters, husband, family, and friends. She enjoys kayaking, camping, gardening, being outdoors, cooking, baking, and crafting. Her favorite season is Fall because she enjoys the cooler weather and fun activities with her daughters.

Layne Rexrode, Associate Director

ALRheadLayne Rexrode joined the University Events team as Associate Director in August 2023. Layne is a JMU alumni, as she graduated in May 2023 from the JMU Hart School. Her degree is in Hospitality Management with double minors in General Business and Entrepreneurship. During her time at JMU as a student, she joined the University Events team her freshman year and continued throughout her studies at JMU, from 2019-2023.

 As Associate Director, Layne manages the internship program, is the co-leader for commencement, lead of the Senior Events Committee, and plans various presidential events.  In addition, Layne supports the Director with the presidential suite at home football games. Throughout Layne’s work endeavors, she serves as the main consultant for partnering vendors and collaborates with departments on campus.  

Layne past work experience is in sales at Quirk Hotel in Richmond, VA. Additionally, she worked as a freelance Wedding Planner, and in various food service industries. Outside of the Hospitality industry, Layne was involved in SafeRides and Intervarsity during her time at JMU. She is passionate about the student experience and providing guidance to interns looking to explore the Hospitality Industry. She has served as a guest lecturer in many hospitality courses at JMU.

 Layne is a Certified Wedding Planner, as well as being certified in AllSeated, and a CVENT Event Planner. 

Layne was born and raised in Richmond, Virginia, but the Valley sunsets stole her heart. In her free time, she enjoys going to Burn Bootcamp, spending time with her friends, and exploring Harrisonburg and the Shenandoah Valley. Her most recent favorite spots are Cinnamon Bear Bakery for breakfast, Your Pie Pizza, and the Harrisonburg Farmers Market.

Event and Office Manager - Vacant
Meet our Interns

img_5480.jpgLaine Cafferty (’25)

Laine Cafferty is studying hospitality management with a general business minor. She is from Virginia Beach, Virginia. She joined the University Events team during her sophomore year and hopes to pursue event planning after graduating from JMU in 2025. She is a student ambassador for the Hart School of Hospitality and Sports and Rec Management. On campus she represents the Club Management Association of America and also is on the executive board of SafeRides.

img_5435.jpgConrad Dillman (’25)

Conrad joined the University Events team his sophomore year. He is a Finance major from Lancaster, Pennsylvania. Conrad is a part of the Professional Business Fraternity Phi Chi Theta and American Marketing Association. He plans to graduate in May of 2025, hoping to get a job in real estate investing upon graduation. He is very excited to join the University Events team as an intern, and is eager to learn about daily operations within the office.

img_6726.pngAbby Fornadel (’25)

Abby joined the University Events Team as an intern during her Freshman year. She grew up in Harrisonburg, Virginia, and is an Internation Affairs Major with a Minor in Spanish. She plans to graduate in 2025 and hopes to become an International Affair Analyst. During her time at JMU, she has become involved in the Peace Corps Prep Program, Relay for Life, and was a part of the Executive Board for the JMU Alumni Association Student Committee. She was also a research assistant working with the implementation of the UN’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals. Abby has a love for event planning and looks forward to being part of an amazing team and helping to coordinate events at JMU. 


Contact us!

We welcome your phone calls and emails regarding event planning or past and present events.

To submit an RSVP or for general questions, please call 540-568-RSVP (7787)
or email University Events.

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