Pic of Michael GilstrapThis longtime Tiger wears a lot of hats. One day he could be reviewing scores of contracts and the next he’ll be pulling a live squirrel from the Trustee House attic. (No lie, we have pictures.)

He’s caught more than 150 bats since he’s been here. Snakes, raccoons, possums  –  no problem, he’s caught them all and releases them in safe areas away from campus.

Meet Michael Gilstrap.

Title: Contract coordinator for roofing and pest control

Years at Clemson: 27

What I do at Clemson: I make sure that the roofers and pest control personnel do their jobs. I create the requisitions to make sure that contractors are paid. I spent 10 years in roofing before I joined Clemson and I was in roofing and asbestos here at Clemson before I assumed my current position. I go back behind the contractors and make sure that they didn’t miss anything. One time I saved the university quite a bit of money by cutting obsolete buildings off a contract. It saved the university $2,000 a month.

IMG_20160309_120054493_HDRWhat I love about Clemson: The people. Clemson’s not buildings, it’s people. It’s like a church. If you love Clemson, it’s because of the people. I enjoy working around people who are nice. Nobody can be great at their job without help from others. When you ask for help at Clemson, they give it with no hesitation. I was a staff senator for six years. I enjoyed getting to know other people from other departments. Many times, we work in siloes. In staff senate, I got to know other people and realized that many of our issues are the same. We got to hear and address concerns from our constituents and that was satisfying to me.

Where I see myself in five years: Retired. I plan to travel. I want to see the West and part of the United States that I’ve never seen. I’d like to go on more cruises. My wife and I have got grandchildren whose ages range from 16 down to four months old and I’d like to spend more time with them.

Last thing I watched on TV: Hunted. It’s a reality show filmed in the Southeast. In the show, people are trying not to get caught. My favorite show, though, is the Big Bang Theory. I enjoy the humor. I have a son-in-law who reminds me of Sheldon. In fact, I call him Sheldon – I’m not sure that goes over so well.

Guilty Pleasure:  I’m a closet Gamecock fan. I like the Tigers but my dad and my sister ruined it for me because they took Clemson to the extreme. My sister used to rent a hotel room during Clemson games. It was karma getting back at her, though, because her daughter got a full ride at USC and my sister was forced to wear “Gamecock Mom” shirts.  I do like Dabo, though. Dabo’s a good guy.

One thing most people don’t know about me: I collect antique radios. It’s the craftsmanship that they put into making them. It’s not like today where everything’s disposable. I have some out for display and some are in storage. I plan to give each one of my kids one someday.


Want to nominate a colleague to be featured in Meet a Tiger? Contact Jackie Todd at jtodd3@clemson.edu.