The Marist Minute is a quarterly electronic newsletter produced by the Alumni and Advancement offices to facilitate communication between Marist alumni, parents, friends and the College. Each issue includes alumni profiles, feature articles, campus news, upcoming events (for on and off campus), and much more! Subscription is FREE and requires only your current e-mail address.
The road traveled has changed, but the final destination has remained the same for the last eight years.
|2013 MAAC Women's Basketball Champions|
Head Coach Brian Giorgis has successfully utilized the team concept in his 11-year tenure, and this year’s team clearly embodied that principle.
The Red Foxes did not have a First Team All-MAAC selection for the first time since 2007. What they did have were four selections to the Second and Third All-MAAC teams (Elizabeth Beynnon, Second Team; Casey Dulin, Second Team; Leanne Ockenden, Third Team; Emma O’Connor, Third Team), which set a school record. Ockenden was named MAAC Defensive Player of the Year. Kristina Danella was named Sixth Player of the Year. Sydney Coffey was named to the MAAC All-Rookie Team. And Giorgis was named MAAC Coach of the Year for the seventh time, extending his conference record.
The eight straight conference championships streak is the longest active streak for any Division I basketball program in the country, men’s or women’s. The nine MAAC championships are now tied for the most of any program in conference history.
|From left: Marist Director of Athletics
Tim Murray, Rachele Fitz '10 and
Fred Weiss '66
The MAAC Tournament took place in Springfield, MA, home of the Basketball Hall of Fame. As part of the weekend’s festivities, the MAAC hosted a special ceremony in which two former players from each MAAC school were inducted into the MAAC Hall of Fame. Marist recognized alumni Fred Weiss ’66 and Rachele Fitz ’10. When asked about the experience, three-time MAAC Player of the Year Rachele Fitz said, “Being inducted into the MAAC Hall of Fame was a tremendous honor, not to mention, a wonderful evening! I feel extremely blessed to be part of the Hall of Fame inductees for 2013.”
As a member of Marist's very first basketball team, Fred Weiss was humbled to be recognized for his contributions. "I am truly honored and grateful for the recognition and it's extra special to have been inducted alongside Rachele Fitz, who is such a goodwill ambassador for the College." Fred's immediate family who were in attendance at the ceremony had an additional reason to celebrate as it was Fred and his wife Katherine's 38th wedding anniversary.
Rachele and Fred remained in Springfield throughout the weekend to cheer on their fellow Red Foxes. “It is always exciting to see the Red Foxes in action,” Rachele said. “I wish I could have been out there with them. Coach Brian and his staff do a phenomenal job. This is a talented team and I can't wait to watch them in the NCAA tournament!”
In the NCAA Tournament, Marist earned the 12th seed in the Bridgeport Regional, and drew fifth-seeded Michigan State as its first-round opponent in College Park, Md. On March 23, the Spartans pulled away late to earn a 55-47 victory to end the Red Foxes’ season with hundreds of Marist fans cheering in the stands and even more via national television. However, the loss did not diminish a season of impressive accomplishments, one in which Marist truly achieved greatness as a team.
|Peter Wilderotter '76|
At 13 years of age, Peter Wilderotter found a lump on his neck which the doctors first thought might be mumps, or possibly a tooth infection. However, a biopsy revealed it was Stage IV Hodgkin’s disease. On that fateful day, Peter promised that if he recovered, he would dedicate his life to helping others. After more than five years of radiation and chemotherapy, Wilderotter triumphed as a survivor.
Wilderotter was introduced to Marist College through is father’s best friend, Bill Gardner, a co-Trustee at the time and principal broker of the emerging McCann Foundation. “Dad would travel to Poughkeepsie every summer with Bill and have a chance to play golf and get to know Marist's new president, Dr. Dennis Murray,” recalls Wilderotter. “He would regale me with stories and the vision that Marist was about to become a truly great institution with national prominence and I was glad that he and Mr. Gardner got to see that come true.”
During his time at Marist College in the early 1970s, Wilderotter embarked on his pledge of helping others. In 1973 he organized a team of fellow students to roll a beer barrel from the Poughkeepsie campus to the Anheuser-Busch Brewery in Newark, New Jersey and back to raise money to fight cancer. Shaileen Kopec was the director of public relations at Marist at the time.
“It was evident even then that Peter was a born leader. To spearhead a team that mastered the many physical and legal logistics involved in rolling a beer barrel – of all things – along 250 miles of highways and roadways through two states was an incredible feat,” says Kopec, who is now a senior development officer at Marist. “Peter also turned out to be a born fundraiser. Back then, to get a corporation like Anheuser-Busch to buy into a student-organized event like this and then kick-off fundraising with a $10,000 contribution was quite an accomplishment.”
Wilderotter recalls, “Shaileen’s stewardship and counsel during the barrel roll and subsequent volunteer activities garnered great publicity for Marist and the American Cancer Society and led to my start in the field. Not a day has passed when I don’t recall something Shaileen has taught me.”
As a result of the event, he was asked to join the local cancer society board. Upon his graduation from Marist, that connection led to a job as development director for the Essex County, New Jersey unit of the American Cancer Society. Then, after a year-long stint for the ACS in Boston, Peter returned to New Jersey and, in 1980, was promoted to area director.
Wilderotter’s career continued to advance and he was named vice president of development at WNYC Radio, America’s largest public radio station, where he directed all fundraising programs and was credited with doubling the station’s income growth, tripling major gifts donated to the station and restructuring the membership department. Wilderotter later held the position of vice president at Planned Parenthood Federation of America where he directed all public and private fundraising programs. Wilderotter also worked at NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund as director of development and public relations, spearheading a historic endowment campaign.
“Much of my career success has its foundation in the people and opportunities I was presented with at Marist,” states Wilderotter. “Thanks to Don Honeman, who was Residence Hall supervisor in Champagnat Hall, I was selected as a resident coordinator--giving enormous responsibility to a 19-year-old kid to manage people, problem solving at the intellectual and emotional level, and help students in their life-changing decisions.”
“The Marist staff and my classmates demonstrate the real greatness of Marist,” says Wilderotter. “The commitment to an individual student bathed in a collaborative and compassionate community.”
Wilderotter is currently the president and chief executive officer of the Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation. He joined the Reeve Foundation in 2005 as the vice president of development and helped grow its national donor base through strategic partnerships and alliances with both individual and corporate donors. He also provided counsel to the Foundation’s Board of Directors on issues including marketing programs and volunteer relations.
Peter Wilderotter also serves on the board of St. Benedict’s Preparatory School in Newark. He is an ardent New York Giants fan and loves attending home games with his children. The 1976 Marist graduate is a seasoned marathon runner and completed his eleventh race in London last year, dedicating each mile of the course to a member of the paralysis community who inspires him: “Marathons are the perfect metaphor for our work: when bodies break down, the mind and the spirit must carry us.”
Wilderotter is a devoted father of four and currently resides in Manhattan.
On December 19, 2012, New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo announced a $3 million grant through Round Two of his Regional Economic Development initiative to support the New York State Cloud Computing and Analytics Center at Marist College.
The grant is part of a $92.8 million package of funding for 84 projects in the Mid-Hudson region that will come to the region through its designation as one of three Best Plan Awardees in the ten-region competition.
The Cloud Computing and Analytics Center will greatly expand the College’s role as a driver of economic development in the Mid-Hudson Valley and across the state by providing IT services to new and growing businesses, including hardware, software, training, and consulting. It will work with companies on early-stage IT projects with the goal of developing and testing ways to deploy commercial cloud computing environments. The Center will also provide critical education and training, through the cloud, in analytics and cloud computing, as well as other critical areas.
The award is a testament to Marist’s strength in the strategic use of IT and, in particular, to its long and fruitful partnership with the IBM Corporation. So many people at Marist and IBM have contributed to building the foundation for this most recent success, but the College would especially like to thank Roger Norton, dean of the School of Computer Science & Mathematics; Bill Thirsk, vice president for information technology/CIO; and Mike Gebele, vice president for systems agenda delivery & platform software development at IBM, for their leadership in developing such a strong concept and proposal. We'd also like to acknowledge the longtime good work of Trustee Ross Mauri ’80, vice president for enterprise process transformation at IBM, and his Technology Committee of the Board of Trustees.
Mary Ann Hoffman, assistant dean in the School of Computer Science & Mathematics; Susan Scanlon, director of corporate outreach; Howard Baker, program manager for the IBM/Marist Joint Study; and Eitel Lauria, associate professor of information systems, all played a major role in preparing the very complex proposal. Jim Melitski, assistant professor of public administration; Christy Huebner Caridi, assistant professor of economics and director of the Bureau of Economic Research; and Ann Davis, associate professor of economics, all contributed key ideas and data to the development of the regional plan.
"Marist and IBM will both commit significant resources to this project, but the state funding is a great validation of our plan," states President Dennis J. Murray. "We look forward to working with New York state, IBM, and other partners to make this one of the premier centers of its type in the world and, in doing so, aid economic development efforts here in the Mid-Hudson Valley and across the state. I'd like to thank Governor Cuomo for his support and assure him that we will do everything in our power to keep New York a great place to live, learn, and work."
|James Baumann '90, SVP, National Accounts
& Media Marketing, The Ad Council,
with Marist students
Nearly three dozen students and 13 alumni connected on February 11 at Taylor, a full-service public relations, marketing, and communications firm headquartered in the Empire State Building, to add one more link to the ever-expanding network comprised of Marist Communication & Media Arts students and successful Marist graduates in the communication industry.
Hosted by Taylor’s managing partner John Liporace ’88, a member of the Communication Advisory Board, the event was organized by the Communication Internship Program, led by Director Gerry McNulty '79 and Coordinator Deborah Porter, with the assistance of James Baumann '90, Communication Advisory Board chair and senior vice president of national accounts & media marketing for The Ad Council.
Transportation and other expenses were underwritten by the Dr. Mary Louise Bopp Communication Internship Fund, an endowment established by the late Marist advertising professor through her estate. This was the third annual communications networking event in New York City, according to McNulty, who called it the best one yet in terms of energy, engagement and participation. Alumni were seated at tables identified by industry – public relations, advertising, and television and sports communication. Students rotated every 15 minutes to accomplish as much networking as possible.
McNulty reported that post-program evaluations were overwhelmingly positive among both students and graduates, with alumni saying that students were serious and well-prepared and students indicating that they plan to keep in touch with alumni they connected with. And so grows the Marist Communication Network.
Thanks are extended to the following graduates for sharing their time and support:
James Baumann '90 - The Ad Council, Senior Vice President of National Accounts & Media Marketing
Christine Petrillo '88 - Alloy Media & Marketing - Vice President Branded Entertainment
Julie Lavin '09 - Walt Disney - Sales Assistant, Disney Theatrical Group
Katy Fuoco '07 - Grey Group – Broadcast Producer
Maria Gordon Shydlo '87 - Shydlo Communication - Owner
John Liporace '88 - Taylor - Managing Partner
Kristen Spirko '09 - Taylor - Account Executive
Sheri Widener Fitzgerald '95 - MTV Networks - Director of Content Distribution
Kelly Reilly '09 - ABC - Production Coordinator "Live with Michael & Kelly"
Karlie Joseph '11 - "The View" – Production Assistant
David Hochman '08 - New York Cosmos - Manager, Media Relations & Marketing
Bobby Marks '95 - Brooklyn Nets - Assistant General Manager
Ian O'Connor '86 - ESPN - Columnist/Host/Author
|Marist students at the third annual Communication and Media ArtsAlumni-Student Networking Night|
|Celebrating in Naples, Florida
From left: Tom Wade, Ann Wade,
Dr. Jep Lanning '53, President Dennis J. Murray,
Joan Lanning and Barbara LaPietra
More than 14,000 donors contributed to the Campaign for Marist, the College's first comprehensive Capital Campaign, which surpassed its ambitious $150 million goal. On February 21, 2013, close to 100 members of the Marist community gathered in Naples, Florida for the first in a series of Campaign Celebrations. The retired faculty, alumni, parents, friends and administration in attendance were the first to see a brand new video highlighting the Capital Campaign's profound impact on Marist and our students. On March 13, more than 250 campaign contributors celebrated in the newly renovated McCann Center Arena and were treated to performances by the Marist Jazz Ensemble, Gospel Choir and Dance Ensemble.
"It was a wonderful event," says Mary Lou (Feo) Kutchma '77, director of student financial assistance at Marist. "The event exemplified what we are all about, coming together to acknowledge the people who support our Marist family and truly make a difference." Two additional events will be held to celebrate the Campaign's success - April 4 in New York City (by invitation only) and July 20 in Santa Monica, California.
Celebrating in Poughkeepsie
|Sadie Effron '79
At 106 years old, Sadie (Levine) Effron ’79 has the distinction of being Marist’s oldest living graduate. Born a twin on March 3, 1907, in Canada, Sadie attended Marist as an adult student majoring in English and graduated magna cum laude at age 72. Today she lives at home in Poughkeepsie and remains active with family and friends.
Married for 69 years to William Effron, longtime president of Efco Products, a manufacturer and supplier of mixes, fillings, toppings, and specialty ingredients to the food industry, Sadie was an integral part of the family-owned and -operated business which remains headquartered in Poughkeepsie after more than 100 years. The Effrons’ three sons - Jack, Ira and Michael – are leaders of the family business and grandson Steve Effron, who currently serves as president, is a member of the Marist Board of Trustees.
Respected civic leaders, Sadie and her husband established the William and Sadie Effron Lecture in Jewish Studies at Marist in 1976 to raise awareness of Jewish history, culture, and current affairs. After nearly four decades, the Effron lecture remains a prominent and popular program at the College and in the community at-large.
Pictured here at age 100, Sadie Effron was awarded Marist College’s Distinguished Alumni Medal at Friday evening Commencement ceremonies in 2007. The highest award presented to Marist graduates, the medal is given to individuals who exemplify the College’s ideals of excellence in education, the importance of community, and dedication to service. These enduring ideals live on in a special way through Marist’s most enduring graduate. Happy 106th, Sadie!
|2012 Alumni Awards Ceremony
From left: President of the Marist Alumni Association
Marie (Esperancilla) Wicks '86, Brendan T. Burke '68,
President Emeritus Dr. Linus Richard Foy '50,
Edward Summers '04/'06M,
Brother Sean D. Sammon, FMS '70
and President Dennis J. Murray
The Alumni Office is currently accepting nominations for all three Alumni Awards categories:
- Dr. Linus Richard Foy '50 Outstanding Alumnus/Alumna Award
- Marist College Distinguished Service Award
- Marist College Young Alumnus/Alumna Award
An inaugural class of honorees received awards during Homecoming & Reunion Weekend in an on-campus ceremony on Saturday, September 22, 2012. They were Brother Seán D. Sammon, FMS '70, Brendan T. Burke '68 and Edward Summers '04/'06M. In addition, Dr. Linus Richard Foy '50, President Emeritus, was honored as the namesake for the Outstanding Alumnus/Alumna Award. Descriptions of all three awards and an online nomination form are available at http://www.marist.edu/alumni/awards.html. 2013 NOMINATIONS ARE DUE BY FRIDAY, JUNE 7.
Federal, state, and local legislators were among the guests at the
The Women’s Enterprise Development Center (WEDC) held a grand opening Jan. 31 for its new Mid-Hudson satellite office, located in the Hancock Center at Marist College. More than 80 guests attended, including federal, state, and local officials, community leaders, entrepreneurs, and business owners.
The satellite center will provide men and women in the seven counties of the Hudson Valley with access to affordable, high-quality business training programs, one-on-one counseling services, microloan funding, networking, workshops, and technical resources. It is open to business owners and entrepreneurs across various stages of business development and from various industries. The satellite is funded through a federal grant.
“WEDC plays a vital role supporting innovative entrepreneurs and hard-working small businesses and is a key partner in the long-term strategy to strengthen our local economy, create jobs, and attract businesses to the region,” said Congressman Sean Patrick Maloney.
Additional guest speakers included President Dennis J. Murray; Susan Spear, the Hudson Valley regional director for the office of U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand; New York State Sen. Terry Gibson; New York State Assemblymember Didi Barrett; and Dutchess County Legislator Sue Serino.
Upcoming programs include First Steps, designed to help clients learn the basics of business ownership, and the 60+-Hour Business Training Program. For more information about WECD, visit www.wedcbiz.org.
The Marist College Student Programming Council (SPC) is proud to announce Goo Goo Dolls, in concert Sunday, April 28, at 3 p.m. at Longview Park on the Marist College Riverfront. Doors will open at 2 p.m. This show is open to the Marist Community (faculty, administration, staff and alumni). The Marist Community may purchase one (1) Marist alumni ticket at $15 and up to three (3) guest tickets at $25 each. Ticket sales for faculty, staff, administrators and alumni will begin on Tuesday, April 2, 12 p.m. at the Office of College Activities on the third floor of the Marist College Student Center. All tickets are general admission.
Marist Money, cash and personal checks are accepted. Sorry, credit cards are not accepted.
You will be able to purchase tickets at the door at no price increase. Please bring this enewsletter with you when you purchase your ticket(s). For the most updated concert information, please monitor the College Activities website (https://www.marist.edu/studentlife/activities.html) or Facebook page (Marist College College Activities).
Please feel free to call College Activities at (845) 575-3279 with any questions. Hope to see you there!
When 22 Marist students and three staff traveled to Punta Gorda, Florida during Spring Break in 2012 to volunteer with the Charlotte County Habitat for Humanity Chapter, Marist alumnus Ernie Arico '76 interviewed several participants and produced a video.
|The Marist Bus arrives at
More than 200 Marist alumni, students and friends hit the slopes in southern Vermont this past January for “Marist Day at The Hermitage.” Through the hospitality of Marist Trustee and alumnus Jim Barnes ’84 and his wife Donna, guests received exclusive access to downhill skiing, cross country skiing, snow boarding, snow tubing and ice skating – all complimentary. Some even enjoyed luxurious rides in the “Catillac” to “The Summit."
Following the days’ activities, everyone gathered in the beautiful dining room for a reception during which Jim Barnes thanked the group for attending and President Dennis J. Murray offered a College update. A photo slide show of the event is available at http://www.marist.edu/alumni/specialevents.html.
|President Dennis J. Murray and Trustee Jim Barnes '84
preparing to ride the "Catillac" to The Summit.
The Hermitage Club is a private resort community offering big mountain Vermont skiing, Desmond Muirhead-designed 18-hole golf course, a luxurious spa and fine dining. It’s the ideal atmosphere for families and friends to share and enjoy the beauty of the four seasons in Vermont.
For further information, please visit http://hermitageclub.com.
Giorgis To Serve on Team USA Staff for World University Games
The day following his team’s MAAC Tournament triumph, it was announced that Brian Giorgis was selected to serve as an assistant coach on the USA women’s basketball team that will compete in the World University Games this summer. The games will be played from July 8-15 in Russia, and will include teams from 16 countries.
Giorgis and Penn State Head Coach Coquese Washington will serve on the staff of head coach Sherri Coale, who is the head coach of the University of Oklahoma. The staff was selected by the USA Basketball Women’s Junior National Team Committee and approved by the USA Basketball Board of Directors.
Women’s Swimming & Diving Captures 14th MAAC Championship
On Feb. 16, the Marist women’s swimming and diving program captured its 14th MAAC championship thanks to a dominating team performance.
Marist amassed a total of 801 points, 193 better than second-place Rider. As usually comes with the territory, several Red Foxes brought home individual honors. Senior Kate Conard was named Co-Women’s Most Outstanding Swimmer, senior Chelaine Eliazar was named Women’s Most Outstanding Diver, Head Coach Larry VanWagner earned Women’s Swimming Coach of the Year honors, and Associate Head Coach/Diving Coach Melanie Bolstad earned Diving Coach of the Year.
Conard wrapped up her career – which included MAAC championships in all four years – with 11 individual titles.
For VanWagner, the award providing a fitting bookend to a season which saw him win his 300th career dual meet, which came against Canisius in the season opener on Oct. 20.
The total of 14 MAAC championships ties men’s rowing for the most of any program in school history.
Lewis’ Shot Earns National Recognition
With his team trailing by three points with just seconds remaining in overtime at Iona on Feb. 7, Marist sophomore Chavaughn Lewis did not have a lot of options.
Lewis, who was approximately 65 feet away from the basket, was forced to heave the basketball down the court. Improbably, his shot went in, and kept a game going which the Red Foxes captured in the second overtime.
The play earned Lewis and the Red Foxes national recognition. It earned its way to the #3 spot of the Top 10 plays on ESPN’s SportsCenter. It was also discussed among national newspaper columnists on ESPN’s Around the Horn the following day.
Lewis, along with junior Adam Kemp, each earned Third Team All-MAAC selections this year. With 979 career points, Lewis has highest point total of any Red Fox through two seasons of his career.
Marist Announces Change In Men’s Basketball Program
On Thursday, March 14, Marist announced that Chuck Martin had been relieved of his duties as head men's basketball coach. A national search for Martin's replacement has begun.
"I'm very appreciative of the hard work Chuck and his staff demonstrated over the past five years," Marist Director of Athletics Tim Murray said. "Chuck represented Marist with class, and conducted his program with great passion and integrity. I think that Chuck is a wonderful person, and I have the utmost respect for him."
Martin was hired as the ninth head coach in program history on April 17, 2008. In his five seasons, the Red Foxes compiled a record of 41-118 (.258). Marist's highest win total under Martin was 14 in the 2011-12 season. The Red Foxes reached the MAAC Tournament quarterfinals in 2009, 2011 and 2012.
Prior to Marist, Martin spent two seasons at the University of Memphis and coached in the national championship game in 2008. Martin also worked as a Division I assistant coach at St. John's University, Drexel University, the University of Massachusetts and Manhattan College.
"The College has made a significant investment in our basketball program with the renovation of the arena and construction of a new basketball complex," Murray said. "Our goal is to compete at the top of our conference and contend for a MAAC championship each year."
Marist Moves Up the Rankings for Online MBA
The Marist Master of Business Administration has once again been ranked among the top in U.S. News & World Report’s “Best Online Education Programs.” The program appeared on the Honor Roll for top online programs when U.S. News debuted its online rankings last year, but this year moved up to rank 13th out of 197 online MBA programs, ahead of such leading business programs such as the Thunderbird School of Global Management, Temple University, and Syracuse University.
To devise its lists, U.S. News considered admissions selectivity, faculty credentials and training, student services and technology, and teaching practices and student engagement. Complete rankings are available at www.usnews.com/online-education.
Dean of the School of Management Elmore Alexander said, “We are pleased to again be recognized by U.S. News for our leading online MBA program.” Alexander added, “It is particularly gratifying because the U.S. News emphasis on student engagement aligns with our own focus on combining expert faculty with diverse groups of students and using leading-edge technology to connect them all in a dynamic learning environment.”
Marist launched New York State's first AACSB-accredited, 100%-online MBA program in 1998. It was also one of the first such programs in the nation. The AACSB is the premier business school accrediting body. Also known as the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business, it accredits less than one third of business programs in the world. In 2012, U.S. News also included Marist in its listing of the top 250 part-time MBA programs, and the School of Management is consistently listed in the Princeton Review's "Best Business Schools."
Designed for part-time study, the Marist MBA emphasizes virtual management skills and the 100% online learning environment is the best place to explore and develop skills in the leadership of geographically dispersed teams. Unlike other colleges, the Marist MBA does not require an undergraduate degree in business and accepts both GMAT and GRE test scores for admission.
For more information on the Marist MBA program, go to www.marist.edu/admission/graduate/businessadministration/.
Thinking About Returning to School or Attending College Part-Time? Think Marist!
Our mission is to provide quality-driven adult education, built on a strong liberal arts foundation that will embolden and enhance the ability of professionals to succeed in a global economy.
Allowing adult students to pursue an undergraduate degree, professional certification, or executive-level training at the Poughkeepsie campus location, Fishkill Executive Center or online through one of our distance learning programs, the School of Global & Professional Programs is accessible both locally in the Hudson Valley and anywhere in the world.