SJU Names V.P. for Development, Alumni Relations

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

PHILADELPHIA (June 17, 2009) — Saint Joseph’s University has named Matthew J. Wawro vice president for development and alumni relations, effective June 1. With more than 25 years of advancement experience primarily in higher and secondary education, Wawro will provide leadership and strategic vision as the University’s chief fundraiser. He will head the effort to successfully complete its $150 million comprehensive campaign, With Faith and Strength to Dare: The Campaign for Saint Joseph’s University and develop the strategy for the next major fundraising initiative.

“Matt brings many strengths to Saint Joseph's including campaign leadership, exceptional management skills and the desire to engage alumni in all facets of their alma mater,” said University President Timothy R. Lannon, S.J. “However, one of the things that impresses me most about Matt is his desire to fully immerse himself in our mission.”

Wawro will oversee Saint Joseph’s development and alumni relations division, which comprises leadership and major gifts, planned giving, corporate and foundation relations, Saint Joseph’s Fund (annual fund), athletic fundraising, research and prospect management, donor relations and stewardship, alumni relations, regional programming, parents programming, and development and alumni communications.

“We are delighted to have Matt lead the Development team toward the completion of our current major fundraising effort,” commented Anthony A. Nichols Sr. ’67, chair, With Faith and Strength to Dare: The Campaign for Saint Joseph’s University. “He will provide the high level of leadership needed to ensure its success.”

Wawro joins SJU after serving as chief advancement officer at the Cranbrook School in Bloomfield Hills, Mich., one of the 10 largest independent schools in the country, where he helped launch a $150 million comprehensive campaign for Cranbrook Educational Community.

Prior to joining Cranbrook, the Michigan native served as chief development officer for the Karmanos Cancer Institute Foundation, a comprehensive cancer center in Detroit.

At the collegiate level, Wawro served as director of university corporate relations at Harvard University during the institution’s $2.6 billion campaign and as associate director of major gifts during the University of Michigan’s $1 billion campaign.

A graduate of the University of Michigan with a bachelor’s degree in political science, Wawro has also worked at Kettering University and headed the Flint, Mich., chapter of Big Brothers Big Sisters. He holds a master’s degree in science administration with a concentration in human resources from Central Michigan University. Wawro and his wife, Elizabeth, have three children.

Media Contact

Carolyn Vivaldi, executive director, development and alumni communications, at 610-660-12150 or

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