Residential Life Staff

We're here to make sure your residential life experience at Franklin Pierce is rewarding, safe and fully-integrated with all aspects of living and learning in a liberal arts community. You will meet three types of staff in your residence hall. Each has a role in helping students adjust to college life and make the most of residential, social and academic life at Franklin Pierce.

An Experience Director (ED) is a professional staff member that lives in the residence halls and oversees the development of their residents. Each has the experience and skill to supervise, provide leadership and act as a role model for their respective staffs. Experience Directors are responsible for establishing a civil and respectful living community while promoting student involvement in the University community. They also serve as a Judicial Officer and are responsible for meeting with their residents when alleged policy violations occur.

A Graduate Assistant (GA) is a professional staff member who resides in campus housing. Their role is to be an adult presence within their area, uphold University policy, as well as assist their respective Experience Director in day-to-day tasks. 

A Community Assistant (CA) is a carefully selected upper-class student leader who assists in developing a community. CA's fulfill many roles including programmer, administrator, and policy enforcer. They are familiar with the University's goals, services, policies and procedures. Community Assistants are directly supervised by the Experience Directors.

Residential Life Office Hours

Monday- Friday: 8:00 am – 4:30 pm
Appointments can be scheduled in person or on the phone at (603) 899-4176

Office Locations

The Residential Life Office is located in the lower plaza level of New Hampshire Hall.

Staff Office Locations
Granite Hall: 002
New Hampshire Hall: 224
Mount Washington: 021
Cheshire Hall: 203
Northwoods Apartments: 005
Kat Dougherty
Kat Dougherty
Assistant Dean of Student Affairs
(603) 899-4167

Kat grew up in the suburbs of Philadelphia, PA and graduated from Towson University with her undergraduate degree in Graphic Design and Art History prior to pursuing her graduate degree in Higher Education and Student Affairs at Indiana University Bloomington. Kat has been working in Residential Life since she was an undergraduate student leader at Towson. Kat's passions within Residential Life include; developing learning communities, facilitating student leadership programs and recognizing the success of students. Kat continues to look forward to meeting students who choose to join the Franklin Pierce University community. 

Daniel Gardner
Daniel Gardner
Assistant Director of Residential Operations
(603) 899-4360

Dan grew up in Vermont and attended New England College where he earned his undergraduate degree in Business Administration and a graduate degree in Organizational Leadership. While in college, Dan was involved with Student Activities, Student Government, Residence Life and the AmeriCorps Program. Since graduating, Dan has worked in Residence Life at colleges/universities in Maine and Vermont and this is his first year at Franklin Pierce.

In his free time, Dan enjoys hiking, kayaking, snowshoeing, lounging around in a hammock and attending the wide variety of campus events at Franklin Pierce.

Chris Johnson
Chris Johnson
Senior Experience Director
Sophomore Residents
Cheshire, Edgewood, & Monadnock Halls
(603) 899-4354

Chris Johnson is originally from Bath, Maine.  He attended the University of Maine at Machias, where he graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in Middle Level Education with a concentration in English.  He has been working in Residential Life at Franklin Pierce for a number of years.  While in college, he was a Resident Assistant for a year, as well as a Head Resident Assistant for two years.  Throughout his time at Pierce, Chris has been involved in many different facets of the community.  Some of his past involvements are: advisor to the Student Government Association, class advisor, part-time faculty, he has also sponsored many children’s events that bring the residents of the surrounding communities to campus to interact with Franklin Pierce students, and facilitated an alcohol workshop.  Currently, Chris teaches a math class, serves on the Student Affairs Leadership Committee and is the Chairperson of the Franklin Pierce University Alcohol and Other Drugs Committee.

Chris, his wife, and their son, Wesley, live on campus.  When Chris is not working he is an avid reader, enjoys video games and is an aspiring writer.

Katherine Potts
Katherine Potts
Experience Director
First Year & Second Year Residents
Granite Hall
(603) 899-4353

Katherine is from Jaffrey, New Hampshire and a graduate of Cazenovia College with her Bachelor of Arts in Social Science with minors in History and Pre-Law. During her time at Cazenovia College she was the Co-Director of the 14th Annual Wheler Conference on World Affairs on Justice and a Master Student for the First Year Seminar, Freedom for The Thought We Hate: A History of the First Amendment. She is currently pursuing her Master of Business Administration in Leadership at Franklin Pierce University. In her free time, she is a licensed pyrotechnician for Atlas PyroVision Entertainment Group performing throughout New England. This summer, Katherine traveled to Montreal, Quebec to represent the United States at the L’International des Feux Loto-Quebec where Atlas Pyrovision (Team USA) was award the Bronze Jupiter and named Best Soundtrack! If she is not on a firework site you can find her competing through the equestrian show circuit in New England! Katherine is looking forward to working with our students this year!

Marisa Najarian
Marisa Najarian
Experience Director
First Year Residents
New Hampshire Hall & Mount Washington Hall
(603) 899-4352

Marisa Najarian is from Andover, Massachusetts. She graduated from American International College with a Bachelor of Arts with a degree in Liberal Studies. She is currently studying Leadership at Franklin Pierce University in order to receive her MBA.

In her free time, Marisa enjoys listening to podcasts, yoga, DIY, reading thrillers, and drinking lots of coffee. This is In Marisa's third year at Franklin Pierce University and overseeing the first-year students in New Hampshire Hall and Mount Washington Hall!

Michelle Bourassa
Michelle Bourassa
Experience Director
Senior Residents
Lakeview and Sawmills
(603) 899-4359

Michelle Bourassa is from Keene, NH. She attended Keene State College, where she graduated in 2010 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Media and Marketing. While at Keene State College Michelle was active on campus, she played intramural sports, was a Resident Assistant, and was involved with summer conferences. After graduating Michelle lived in Boston as an Area Sales Manager for a beverage company, promoting, selling and sampling the beverage to local vendors and at events.

Michelle returned back to the area to become a Correctional Officer for Sullivan County Department of Corrections in Claremont, NH. Michelle is currently in her 3rd year of a graduate degree program in Clinical Mental Health Counseling from Antioch University in Keene.  She will be working on an internship in the spring. In her free time she enjoys reading, playing volleyball, spending time with family and volunteering with the local Rotaract group. Michelle is going into her 6th year with Franklin Pierce and is currently living in the senior area. Michelle will be working with the returning junior and senior students residing in Lakeview and Sawmills. She can’t wait for the students to return and bring some life back to the senior village.