Meet the Staff
Associate Athletics Director for Development
Coleman Barnes joined the UAB Athletics Department in July of 2011 as Associate Athletics Director for Development after serving as the Executive Director of The Bulldog Foundation and Associate Athletics Director for Development for Fresno State Athletics (2008-2011).
He oversees the day-to-day operations of Blazer Boosters, the fundraising unit for UAB Athletics.
As an executive administrator for Fresno State Athletics, Barnes oversaw all components of the development office that raised approximately $6 million annually. Under Barnes' leadership, Fresno State promoted a culture of philanthropy that resulted in record-setting levels of philanthropic support to enhance the student-athlete experience. He also implemented a market driven annual fund by launching a new priority seating and parking program for football and men's basketball.
Prior to Fresno State, Barnes served as the Assistant Director for the UMAA Foundation (2005-2008), the fundraising unit for Ole Miss Athletics. At Ole Miss, Barnes played an integral role in raising nearly $13 million annually for Ole Miss Athletics. Prior to Ole Miss, Barnes was a Development Associate for the Hurricane Club at the University of Miami (2004-2005) and an intern in the Harvard University Athletics Ticket Office (2003-2004).
Barnes graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Education from the University of Kentucky in 2002 with a major in Kinesiology and a minor in Business. He was also a three-year letterwinner as the long snapper on the football team.
In 2004, Barnes received a Master of Science in Kinesiology with an emphasis in Sport Management from the University of Kentucky. He completed the coursework for a Doctor of Philosophy in Higher Education at the University of Mississippi in July of 2008 and is currently working on his dissertation.
A native of Bardstown, Ky., Barnes resides in Hoover with his wife, the former Mary Beth Justice of Madison, Miss. and their children, Caroline and William.
Assistant Athletics Director for Development
Brad Hardekopf joined the UAB Athletics Department in September of 2008 as Director of Sales. After spending a year launching the sales department, he transitioned into a role focused on fundraising. Hardekopf currently serves on the administrative staff for UAB Athletics as Assistant Athletics Director for Development.
In addition to managing the Blazer Club, his emphasis is implementing a philanthropic culture among annual fund donors, soliciting major gifts, supervising the Blazer Boosters internship program and assisting with special events.
He joined the Blazers after spending two seasons with the WNBA Houston Comets. As their Corporate Partnerships Manager, he worked with local and regional businesses to build and ensure fulfillment of integrated sponsorship packages for the team. Hardekopf directed the corporate sponsorship department during the 2008 WNBA season that was accountable for approximately $1 million in revenue.
In 2006, Hardekopf interned with the Bruno Event Team and assisted with the SEC Baseball and the Association of Volleyball Professionals tournaments at Regions Park. During his time at Auburn University, he provided support to the athletics department by planning and executing promotions for multiple sports.
A native of Birmingham, he graduated from Auburn University with a degree in marketing. He currently resides in Vestavia.
Assistant Director of Development
Paul Kabbes joined the UAB Athletics Department in May of 2012. In his role, Kabbes serves as the Assistant Director of Development primarily focusing on growing the membership base for the Blazer Boosters office.
Kabbes coordinates UAB's B Club, assists with the Blazer Club, and manages the annual Blazer Rep program. In addition, he oversees the Blazer Bulletin and Blazer Boosters website.
Kabbes joined the Blazer Boosters after two years with the Illinois State Athletic Department. He served as the Development Graduate Assistant while at ISU and worked primarily on generating annual fund revenues.
He also managed donor rooms for Men's Basketball and Football, worked on various external events, and served as tournament director for the Redbird Golf Classic. Kabbes also assisted with the selling of club seats for a newly-renovated Hancock Stadium on Illinois State's campus.
While completing his Master's degree in Sport Management at Illinois State, Kabbes became strongly involved with the Miracle League of Central Illinois, a non-profit organization that provides children with mental or physical disabilities the chance to play baseball. He served as a coach and also worked as a fundraising intern. Kabbes aided with various fundraising events working towards the construction of a new field for the Miracle League.
A native of Normal, Illinois, he graduated from Illinois Wesleyan University in 2010 with a degree in Business Management. Kabbes was a three-year letterwinner with the IWU baseball team and pitched for the 2010 Division III National Championship team. He currently resides in Homewood.
Associate Director of Development ' Donor Relations and Special Events
Phoebe Pletcher joined UAB Athletics in January 2012 as the Associate Director of Development for Donor Relations and Special Events.
In this role, her key responsibilities include processing donations and renewals, overseeing marketing materials for all development initiatives, directing logistics for Blazer Boosters special events, coordinating donor hospitality for football and men's basketball, and managing the Blazer Women's Athletic Society.
Prior to arriving at UAB, Phoebe served as a Development Assistant for Tennessee Athletics in Knoxville, Tennessee and worked for The Colonnade Group, Inc. (based out of Birmingham, Alabama) as an intern for Tennessee Athletic Hospitality. While in Knoxville, she also assisted the Women's Basketball Hall of Fame and the Helen Ross McNabb Foundation with special events.
A native of Cartersville, Georgia, Phoebe graduated from Georgia Southern University in 2007 with a Bachelor of Science in Chemistry. In 2009, she graduated from the University of Tennessee with a Master of Science in Sports Management.