EVER UPWAR D | T H E CA M PAIG N F OR F OR DHA M | W I N T E R 2 0 1 3 , Vol. 2 , No. 3
denzel washington, unplugged
The Academy Award-Winning Actor Returns to Lincoln Center to Talk with Theater Students
aking a detour from the red carpet
at Lincoln Center for the premiere of
his acclaimed new film, Flight, Denzel
Washington, FCLC ’77, made an
unpublicized stop at Fordham’s Pope
Auditorium on Oct. 14. Alternately
professorial, philosophical, and parental, the Oscarwinning actor, arguably the University’s highest-profile
alumnus, gave Fordham theater students direct advice
on the craft and life.
Washington reminisced about his time at Fordham,
when he meandered from pre-med to political science
before coming down to the Lincoln Center campus
from Rose Hill to try his hand at acting. Once there,
he was cast as the lead in Eugene O’Neill’s Emperor
Jones. At the time, the actor said, he didn’t even know
who O’Neill was, but to this day the playwright
remains one of his favorite writers. “The pain that he suffered, I just related to it,” said
Washington. “The tears on the page made sense to me.”
Washington recalled lean times of trying to figure
out how to take in a Broadway show (a ticket cost $6
at the time), get uptown, and eat—all on a student’s
tight budget. He said the hardest role he ever played
was “unemployment.”
But, for all the struggles, Fordham was where he
wanted to be.
“Being in this part of town at that time, on this
stage, I can’t tell you how much it did for me,” he
said. “I was right here at Lincoln Center, right in the
middle of things.”
The actor recalled standing in the student section of
Broadway theaters, watching Robert De Niro shoot
Taxi Driver up the block from campus, and seeing
James Earl Jones playing Oedipus at St. John the
Divine. “I watched everybody,” he said. “I was like,
‘Wow, I want to be like them.’” To that end, Washington pointed to a singular
aspect of his craft: emulating another actor’s
approach. He added that he wasn’t alone in the
method. “I had a chance to meet [Laurence] Olivier
and he said, ‘Just steal.’” Sitting on the very same stage where he performed during his school days, Denzel Washington took time out from promoting his latest film to talk with
Fordham students in Pope Auditorium.
Washington told students to forget about film acting
during their time at the University. “When I was here,
we never talked about movie stars,” he said.
Following his years at Fordham, Washington was
accepted into MFA programs at Yale and Carnegie
Mellon universities. But the William Morris talent
agency snapped him up first, and fame followed. The
actor said that, although he understands that moviestar fame and publicity are part of his job as an actor,
it is not what he values.
“I’m sitting here with you now and there is a
premiere over at Lincoln Center right now,” he said.
“They’re doing the whole business, and I’m here, and
this is where I’d rather be.”
Washington has long been a champion of theater
education at his alma mater. The two-time Oscar
winner served on the University’s Board of Trustees
from 1994 to 2000. And in 2011, he endowed the
Denzel Washington Chair in Theatre with a $2
million gift to Fordham. (Veteran actor Joe Morton
currently holds the chair.) Washington also made a
$250,000 gift to establish an endowed scholarship
fund for students in the Fordham Theatre Program.
“It’s not what you have; it’s what you do with what
you have,” he told students. “My life is not typical
in this profession, but one thing I know I have in
common with everybody here is the ability to give
back. Take what you have and use it for good.”
the right chemistry for business education
The Stavropoulos Family Foundation Supports the Renovation of Hughes Hall
William Stavropoulos, Ph.D., PHA ’61, started his career as a research chemist during the
1960s, after graduating from Fordham and earning a doctorate in medicinal chemistry
from the University of Washington. Yet for the majority of his 39 years at the Dow Chemical
Company, he held leadership positions in marketing and management.
“I spent most of my life on the business side of things,” said the former chairman and
CEO of the Michigan-based multinational. So when he considered making a substantial
gift to Fordham, supporting the Gabelli School of Business seemed like the right fit. (The
undergraduate college he attended, the School of Pharmacy, closed in 1972.)
“I know Fordham has put a lot of emphasis on improving their undergraduate and
graduate business programs,” he said, “and I thought this gift would be put to good use.”
Stavropoulos and his wife made a $4 million pledge to the University in 2011 through
the Bill and Linda Stavropoulos Family Foundation. The gift has helped transform Hughes
Hall, the 19th-century French Gothic building near the center of the Rose Hill campus, into
a modern, high-tech home for the Gabelli School—complete with a trading room featuring
Bloomberg terminals and streaming stock tickers. The entire second-floor complex is named
in honor of the Stavropoulos Foundation. It includes two large lecture rooms, a meeting
room, a student lounge, and a study center. The renovation was designed to foster an even
stronger sense of community among faculty members, administrators, and students.
“It’s really something,” Stavropoulos said, “the old and the new.”
The foundation’s gift to Fordham is not the first substantial investment he has made in a
community that’s helped him succeed. An avid baseball fan who once played semipro ball
with Carl Yastrzemski, Stavropoulos established the Michigan Baseball Foundation after he
retired from Dow in 2006. “We had two purposes: to encourage economic and business
development, and to support youth activities,” he said of the project, which brought a
minor-league team and a new ballpark to Midland, Dow’s headquarters for more than 100
years and Stavropoulos’ home for 25. The nonprofit has brought an estimated $2 million
into the surrounding neighborhoods, according to Stavropoulos, now chairman emeritus
Linda and Bill Stavropoulos toured the Gabelli School’s new home on Oct. 22, shortly before they were inducted into
the Archbishop Hughes Society, which honors Fordham University’s most generous benefactors.
of Dow’s board of directors. “I wanted to give back,” he said. “The company and the
community have been very good to me.”
Stavropoulos shared similar sentiments about his Fordham community. Though the
University has changed quite a bit since he lived on campus, the things he remembers
most still resonate with today’s students: “My friends, the camaraderie that we had, the
intimacy of the school, and just that feeling of support that you get,” said the son of Greek
immigrants, who grew up about 100 miles away from the Bronx on Long Island’s East End.
“And,” he said, underscoring one of Fordham and the Gabelli School’s greatest strengths,
“we had New York City at our feet.”
The 2012 Review of Gifts and Benefactors is now available online at www.fordham.edu/gifts.
Fordham is grateful to its many generous and dedicated donors for their ongoing support.
ringing endorsements for support
The Brand-New Fordham Fund Phonathon Center Connects Students with Alumni, Parents,
and Friends Who Share a Passion for the University
rittany Poe may be studying in New
York City, but she drew on her
Southern roots during a recent shift
at the Fordham Fund Phonathon
Center, where she works as a part-time
fundraiser. A few minutes into a call
with the father of a Fordham student, Poe learned
that he is from her home state of North Carolina.
Within seconds, she subconsciously slipped into a faint
Southern drawl, answering with a few “yessirs” and
plenty of down-home charm.
Poe is one of dozens of fundraisers at the phonathon
center. Students reach out to alumni, parents, and
friends of the University to help Fordham update
contact information and solicit contributions to the
Fordham Fund, unrestricted funds that Fordham can
apply to needs that arise anywhere in the University.
Michelle Garland, program manager of the
phonathon, said students began calling from the new
center in O’Hare Hall on Oct. 15. Just 10 days later,
they had completed more than 1,600 calls.
Jillian Pellegrini, a Fordham College at Rose Hill
senior, said talking with alumni has given her a
deeper understanding of the University’s history. She
learned about Fordham’s days in lower Manhattan
by speaking with an alumnus who navigated Vietnam
War protests on his way to class at 302 Broadway
in the late 1960s. She also spoke with an alumna
who was part of the first class of women admitted to
Fordham College at Rose Hill during the 1970s.
“I think it would be interesting to see Fordham back
then,” Pellegrini said. “We always tell alumni about
all the things that have changed, and it’s so much,”
she said, citing the renovation of Hughes Hall; the
opening of Campbell, Salice, and Conley residence
halls at Rose Hill; and the new Fordham Law building
and undergraduate residence hall under construction
on the Lincoln Center campus.
Pellegrini said having a well-paid on-campus job has
been a huge help to her. As she prepares to graduate
with a degree in American studies and considers
spending a year with the Jesuit Volunteer Corps, every
dollar helps. And the time she saves by not commuting
to Manhattan to work is reinvested in her thesis.
Pellegrini, the oldest of three children in her family,
said that without the financial support she is now
helping to raise, she would not have been able to pursue
her dream of attending college in New York City.
“I am lucky enough that this kind of support has
made my education at Fordham possible,” she said.
Financial aid also helps Bronx native Peter Esposito
attend Fordham. A member of the Rose Hill Society,
a volunteer-based student branch of the Office of
Undergraduate Admission, and a son of two Fordham
alumni, Esposito is no stranger to touting the benefits
of attending and supporting the University.
“It’s great being able to raise money for the school I
always knew I wanted to come to,” he said.
Esposito, a junior majoring in history and Italian
studies, is considering a career in education. He said
speaking with alumni about their career paths has
helped him think more broadly about his own.
“It’s been interesting seeing where alumni have gone.
You get a sense that even if you major in something, you
don’t necessarily have to go work in that field,” he said.
Poe, who expects to earn her master’s degree in
medieval studies in May, said she’s also gained career
wisdom from alumni and parents on the phone.
“I talked to someone recently who had done their
Ph.D. and gave me tons of advice on how to do
applications for my own,” she said.
Fully staffed, the center will employ 45 to 50
students and place up to 1,200 calls each week,
according to Garland, who said she is continuously
recruiting more students who are passionate about
Fordham and great conversationalists.
So far, it sounds like she’s on the right track.
“I’ve had some great, long conversations with
alumni who love talking about Fordham,” Pellegrini
said. “I’ve learned a lot.”
campaign progress
Prizing Ethics Education
As of mid-November, Fordham alumni, parents, and friends
have raised more than $459 million in support
of the campaign.
By Priority
Clockwise from center left: Jillian Pellegrini, Peter Esposito (shown with
phonathon manager Michelle Garland), and Brittany Poe are among 50
students reaching out to alumni, parents, and friends via the brand-new
Fordham Fund Phonathon Center.
$50.9 million
$94.3 million
$107.6 million
$100.9 million
$105.9 million
A New Essay Contest Challenges Students to Analyze Moral Issues
K. York Chynn, M.D., and M. Noelle Chynn, GSS ’60, have made a $100,000 gift to
Fordham University’s Center for Ethics Education to endow an essay prize that asks
undergraduate students to reflect on ethical choices.
The Chynns’ gift “reflects the larger mission of the University, which emphasizes moral
development in tandem with intellectual development,” said the center’s director, Celia B.
Fisher, Ph.D., Marie Ward Doty University Chair and professor of psychology.
Dr. Chynn said he and his wife were inspired to take action after reading news articles
about one egregious moral transgression after another. “You hope this will help,” he said.
With assistance from their church, the couple first created an ethics essay contest at
a middle school near their home in Tenafly, N.J. Wanting to extend the concept to older
students, they approached Fordham because it is a Catholic university and because of
Mrs. Chynn’s connection as an alumna of the Graduate School of Social Service.
When they found out the University has an ethics center that not only hosts public
events and lectures but also offers a cross-disciplinary master’s degree program,
they felt it was a perfect fit. Fordham’s university-wide focus on ethics has made the
administration of the essay prize “a little easier,” said Dr. Chynn, professor emeritus of
radiology at Columbia University.
Open to all Fordham undergraduates, the essay competition began last spring as a
pilot contest that the Chynn Family Foundation supported before endowing the Dr. K.
York and M. Noelle Chynn Prize in Ethics. More than 100 students entered, and the top
three won prizes of $300, $500, and $1,000. At a reception last spring, the Chynns met
the winners, including Ariadne Blayde Baker-Dunn, FCLC ’12, who received first prize for
an essay examining her motives in helping a local homeless man who soon forgot her. “It
was very moving,” said Dr. Chynn.
This year, Fisher said she plans to have students present their papers at a dinner.
“Faculty are excited to provide students with an opportunity to take what they’ve learned
in class and reflect on their mission as men and women for others.”
Learn more about Excelsior | Ever Upward | The Campaign for Fordham
at www.fordham.edu/campaign.
trustworthy leadership
A Conversation with Robert Daleo, GSB ’72, Chair of the Fordham Board of Trustees
obert Daleo, GSB
’72, still recalls
what his father
told him more
than four decades
ago: “‘I’m sorry
I can’t pay for your college. But I
gave you the world to live in.’
“And he was right,” said Daleo,
one of three sons born to ItalianAmerican parents in the Bronx.
“My mom was a seamstress;
my father worked in a factory
downtown. They gave me an
understanding of who I am.
And they gave me values.”
Daleo graduated from Fordham
University in 1972 with a B.S. in
economics and later earned an
M.B.A. from the City University
of New York. This past June, he
was elected chair of the Fordham
University Board of Trustees.
And in December, after a 40-year
career in the information business,
including stints at McGraw-Hill
and Automatic Data Processing,
he will retire as vice chairman of
Thomson Reuters.
Daleo joined the global news and
information services company in
1994 as senior vice president and
chief financial officer of Thomson
Newspapers. Within a few years, he
helped turn around what had been
a struggling business. He rose to
executive vice president and chief
financial officer of the Thomson
Corporation, which acquired the
Reuters Group in 2008.
In recent years, Daleo also
became one of Fordham’s most
generous benefactors. In 2005, he
and his wife, Linda, made a gift to
Fordham to establish an endowed
scholarship in loving memory of
his late brother, Paul Daleo, GSB
’68, GBA ’75. More recently, they
supported the transformation of
Hughes Hall into the new home of
the Gabelli School.
Daleo met with EXCELSIOR
in October, four months into his
tenure as chair of the Board.
Did you work to pay your way
through Fordham?
Yes, I managed a liquor store,
believe it or not, by Hugh Grant
Circle, near Parkchester. On a
normal day, I’d get up early to open
the store, then have class from 10
to 2, maybe spend another hour at
the library, then drive back to the
store and work until the evening.
When it was slow, I’d sit behind
the counter reading my textbooks.
It all blended together, work and
education. I think that is integral to
what Jesuit education is all about.
Did you get any financial aid?
I did get some help from Fordham,
a scholarship from the Uniroyal
Foundation that covered a good
part of my tuition. I was so
impressed by that, and it actually
influenced my thinking later on in
life when I established a scholarship
in memory of my brother Paul.
You’ve also returned to campus
as a guest lecturer at the business
school. What did you tell students?
I talked about changes in
technology and how companies
that own the current business
model don’t always make the right
transition. IBM invented the PC
but essentially gave that market to
Microsoft. Microsoft gave away
the search marketplace to Google.
And things keep going. So it was all
about understanding how business
models evolve.
Did you relate that to your work at
Thomson Reuters?
I talked about how we transformed
ourselves in 2000 by getting out
of newspapers. In 1999, we told
the board, “Look, we believe that
the business model of the Internet
is going to be a big disruption to
newspapers, and we also believe
that we are close to the top of the
business cycle. If we don’t sell it
now, we might have to wait until
the next peak.” Everybody thought
we were brilliant, but it was just
deducing—or, as the Jesuits would
say, discerning where the pockets of
growth are and how the company
is positioned to be in them.
Why did you and your wife make
a gift to support the renovation of
Hughes Hall?
You can’t do great work if you
don’t have the right place to do it.
The Hughes Hall renovation, the
new dormitories at Rose Hill, the
new Law School and residence hall
at Lincoln Center—they are just so
important, not only because they’re
tangible evidence of support but
because they enhance our ability to
live our primary mission, which is
education. And we still have needs,
certainly in science facilities and a
new student center.
What else does Fordham need to
continue its mission?
The University needs and deserves
a larger endowment. More than 90
percent of our students get some
financial aid, and many are among
the first in their families to go to
college. That’s part of our Jesuit
heritage, and we should be doing
all we can to help them. We need to
continue to ask for support because
the work that we do is so noble.
a fitting tribute
Honora “Nora” Ahern Grose, GBA ’84, was working
at an architectural firm when she enrolled in the MBA
program at Fordham’s Graduate School of Business
Administration during the 1980s. The advanced degree,
she was convinced, would complement her creative
talents with practical business intelligence, giving her
an edge in a competitive field.
“When I finished architecture school and began
working, I found that the education I had received was
rather focused,” said Grose, who earned her B.S. at
Catholic University. “It didn’t encompass a lot of general
business principles that are useful in your career and in
life. My Fordham education helped me round out my
career and become a more attractive job candidate.”
Grose, a former construction manager and diversified
portfolio manager, worked in commercial architecture
at the Washington, D.C.-based firm of Deupi and
Associates, and was a project manager for Halpern Real
Estate Development, and Olympia and York.
In 2010, she returned to Fordham to participate in a
Women in Leadership luncheon with Gabelli School of
Business students. “A lot of people are creative,” she
told them. “But finding people with a combination of
creativity and good business sense—that combination
is not quite as common.”
Grose’s desire to equip students with business
skills and ethical values inspired her and her husband,
Madison, vice chair of Starwood Energy Group and
senior managing director at Starwood Capital Group,
to make a $1 million gift to Fordham earlier this year
to create the Grose Family Endowed Chair in Business.
Their generosity leverages support from Mario Gabelli,
GSB ’65, who in 2010 designated $5 million of his $25
million gift to Fordham to match, dollar for dollar, other
donors’ gifts toward endowed chairs.
“We wanted to be part of the capital campaign,” said
Grose, who joined Fordham’s Board of Trustees after
three years on the President’s Council.
“Serving on the council was a wonderful opportunity
to reach out into the community and connect with
Fordham students,” she said. “They are all enthusiastic
and excited. It’s wonderful to spend time with them.”
Honora Ahern Grose, GBA ’84, and her husband, Madison, were among
21 men and women inducted into the Archbishop Hughes Society on
Oct. 22. The society recognizes those whose spiritual, intellectual, and
financial gifts have helped the University realize its mission.
By the Numbers
Endowed Faculty Positions at Fordham
The Thomson Reuters/Bob Daleo Fund for Global Education
In honor of Robert Daleo’s upcoming retirement as
vice chairman of Thomson Reuters and his recent
election as chair of the Fordham University Board of
Trustees, Thomson Reuters has established a fund to
support global business education at Fordham.
Stephane Bello, chief financial officer of the
international news and information services firm
(whose daughter, Tania, is a junior at Fordham), was
among the first to make a gift to the University in
Daleo’s name. Gifts to the fund will help the Gabelli
School of Business make its international offerings
more accessible to a greater number of students.
Gabelli currently offers students a wealth of
international learning opportunities—from globalthemed courses on campus and internships in the New
York offices of multinational firms to international
study tours and semester-long programs at universities
trustee, gba alumna
establishes chair in business
throughout the world, including those offered at
Fordham’s own London Centre.
“Every course and aspect of the Gabelli School
experience should have an international component,
reflecting the reality that all business today is
global,” said Donna Rapaccioli, Ph.D., GSB ’83,
dean of the Gabelli School. But providing global
opportunities for students is costly.
Gifts to the Thomson Reuters/Daleo fund will help
Fordham create scholarships for students to study
abroad, bring well-known speakers to campus for
International Business Week, and add courses in global
business and culture.
To make a gift to the Thomson Reuters/Bob Daleo
Fund for Global Education, go to www.fordham.edu/
onlinegiving or call Robert Smith, senior director of
development for stewardship, at 212-636-7441.
Increasing the number of endowed chairs at the University
is one of the top five goals of Excelsior | Ever Upward |
The Campaign for Fordham.
Why is it important to fund more endowed chairs? Because
these academic posts help the University attract some of the
world’s leading scholars who contribute not only to students’
education in the classroom but also to groundbreaking
research in any number of fields.
$80 million goal for endowed scholarships
$50.5 million raised to date
38 endowed chairs established at Fordham
since the start of the campaign
146% increase in the number of endowed chairs
since the start of the campaign
64 named professorships across all Fordham schools
and colleges
Invest in the next generation of outstanding Fordham faculty
members. To learn more, visit www.fordham.edu/campaign
or call 212-636-6550.
Fordham University
Development and University Relations
888 Seventh Avenue, 7th Floor
New York, NY 10019
Fordham University
113 West 60th Street
New York, NY 10023
What is Ring-a-Ram?
Find out inside.
Excelsior is published three times a year by the Department of
Development and University Relations to share news of Fordham’s
capital campaign and to celebrate the gifts that are taking the
University and its students to new heights.
join us
Learn more at www.fordham.edu/events.
Saturday, 8 December
The Nutcracker
Tuesday, 11 December
Annual Fordham Club Christmas Reception
Meet the Dancers: 12:30 p.m. | Matinee Performance: 2 p.m. |
Brooklyn Academy of Music | 30 Lafayette Avenue | Brooklyn, N.Y.
Register online at www.fordham.edu/events. For more information,
contact Jake Braithwaite at 212-636-7501 or [email protected]
7 p.m. | Tognino Hall | Duane Library | Rose Hill Campus
Fordham Club alumni and current members are invited to join
us for the annual Christmas reception at the Rose Hill campus,
hosted by Michael Latham, Ph.D., dean of Fordham College at
Rose Hill.
RSVP at www.fordham.edu/events. For more information, contact
Jake Braithwaite at 212-636-7501 or [email protected]
Saturday, 8 December
Men’s Basketball
Pregame Reception
Fordham vs. St. John’s at
Madison Square Garden
5 p.m. | Stout NYC | 133 West
33rd Street | New York City
For more information, contact
Brianne Laurin at 212-636-6573
or [email protected]
Sunday, 9 December
Central New Jersey Chapter
Annual Yuletide Mass and
2 p.m. | St. Paul’s Roman
Catholic Church | 214 Nassau
Street | Princeton, N.J.
For more information, contact
Carroll Seghers, FCLC ’74, GBA
’82, at [email protected]
Tuesday, 11 December
Handel’s Messiah
Dinner with Special Guest Robert Minotti, Director of the Fordham
University Choir: 5:30 p.m. | Performance: 7:30 p.m. | St. Thomas
Church | 1 West 53rd Street | New York City
Register online at www.fordham.edu/events. For more information,
contact Jake Braithwaite at 212-636-7501 or [email protected]
Tuesday, 11 December
Call and Response: How American Catholic Sisters Have
Shaped the Church Since Vatican II
6 p.m. | Pope Auditorium | Lowenstein Center |
Lincoln Center Campus
Co-sponsored by the Fordham Center on Religion and Culture and
the Francis and Ann Curran Center for American Catholic Studies
Free and open to the public. RSVP at [email protected]
or 212-636-7347.
Saturday, 12 January
Dublin Regional
5 p.m. | Guinness
Storehouse | St. James Gate
| Dublin, Ireland
RSVP online at www.
For more information,
contact the Office of Alumni
Relations at [email protected]
Thursday, 13 December
Chicago Regional Christmas Reception
7 p.m. | Pint | 1547 N. Milwaukee Avenue | Chicago
Register at www.fordham.edu/events.
For more information, contact Matt Policastro, FCRH ’06,
at 917-756-0115 or [email protected]
Thursday, 17 January
The Philadelphia Orchestra Performance and Dinner
Friday, 14 December
Alumni Chapter of Northern California Holiday Dinner
Dinner: 5:30 p.m. | Performance: 8 p.m. | Carnegie Hall |
881 Seventh Avenue (at 57th Street) | New York City
Register online at www.fordham.edu/events. For more information,
contact Jake Braithwaite at 212-636-7501 or [email protected]
5:30 p.m. | Original Joe’s | 601 Union Street | San Francisco
For more information, contact Mark DiGiorgio at
[email protected]net.
Wednesday, 23 January
The Frick Permanent Collection Tour
Sunday, 23 December
Alumni Chapter of South Florida Miami Dolphins Outing:
Tailgate and Football Game
Lunch: 12 p.m. | Tour: 2 p.m. | The Frick Collection |
1 East 70th Street | New York City
Register online at www.fordham.edu/events. For more information,
contact Jake Braithwaite at 212-636-7501 or [email protected]
10:30 a.m. | Sun Life Stadium | Parking Lot B
For more information, contact Jim Carenza at [email protected]
Sunday, 27 January
Long Island Mass and Reception
Monday, 24
Christmas Eve
Midnight Mass
4:30 p.m. | Inisfada Jesuit Retreat House | 251 Searingtown Road |
Manhasset, N.Y.
Register online at www.fordham.edu/events. For more information,
contact the Office of Alumni Relations at 212-636-6520.
11:30 p.m. | Fordham
University Church |
Rose Hill Campus
Wednesday, 30 January
Boston Regional Reception
6 p.m. | The Langham Boston | 250 Franklin Street | Boston
Register online at www.fordham.edu/events. For more information,
contact the Office of Alumni Relations at 212-636-6520.
Please note that dates and times are subject to
change. For the latest information about these
and other events, visit www.fordham.edu/events.