Maxwell alumna Phaedra Stewart ’91 finds it difficult to look at the world without seeing opportunities to connect with people, raise their spirits and empower them to make their lives better. A self-described serial entrepreneur (some might say a serial…
Comanici named assistant dean for advancement for College of Visual and Performing Arts
Comanici named assistant dean for advancement for College of Visual and Performing ArtsJanuary 09, 2006Jaime Winne Alvarez firstname.lastname@example.org
Jeffry J. Comanici ’88 of Fayetteville, N.Y., has been named assistant dean for advancement for the College of Visual and Performing Arts (VPA) at Syracuse University, effective April 3. Comanici will report to Carole Brzozowski, dean of VPA, and Lil Breul O’Rourke, SU vice president for institutional advancement and chief development officer. In this position, Comanici will oversee all of the college’s development initiatives.
“Jeff’s close ties to Central New York, coupled with his strong leadership skills and cultural affiliations, make him an ideal choice for this position,” says Thomas J. Walsh, senior vice president for institutional advancement. “I am sure his appointment will further strengthen the many connections between the College of Visual and Performing Arts and the local arts community.”
Comanici’s primary responsibilities will include creating a strategic and long-term development plan and an alumni relations plan to engage constituents in VPA’s arts programs and development campaign policies. He will serve as the liaison between VPA and SU’s central development operation, assuring that the college is properly aligned with central development objectives. He will meet with faculty to identify funding opportunities, cultivate relationships between donors and the college, and direct and manage VPA alumni activities.
“I am thrilled to have Jeff join our college in this key position,” says Dean Brzozowski. “His development and leadership experience, particularly his work for the Syracuse Symphony Orchestra, make him invaluable to us as we continue to promote the good work of our faculty and students and build strong relationships with our alumni and friends around the world.”
“It is both an honor and privilege to be appointed to this position and have the chance to once again work for my alma mater. I am excited about the opportunities that are being developed for the College of Visual and Performing Arts under the leadership of Dean Brzozowski and look forward to working with the faculty and staff to achieve them,” says Comanici. “The recent overtures of the college and University to reach out to the cultural community in Syracuse and Central New York are especially gratifying and in my new role I look forward to helping strengthen those ties.”
Comanici holds a bachelor’s degree in marketing and finance from the Martin J. Whitman School of Management. Since 1999, he has worked for the Syracuse Symphony Orchestra (SSO), most recently as president and executive director, leading the largest cultural agency in Central New York with an annual budget of nearly $6 million to critical acclaim and financial success. He previously served as the SSO’s director of development.
His major accomplishments with the SSO include successfully leading the organization to a sold-out and critically acclaimed performance at Carnegie Hall in April 2003; an overall increase in contributed giving; raising the endowment campaign to more than $5 million; balancing the SSO annual budget every year of his tenure; reducing a nearly $1 million accumulated operating deficit to less than $175,000; cultivating education and outreach activities made possible by a federal grant secured with the assistance of U.S. Rep. James Walsh; record subscription and single-ticket sales; and an increase in community partnerships, including the Southside Summer concert with the Henry Moore Works Program, the Habitat for Humanity “Raise the Roof” benefit concert, the “Messiah” food drive for the Interreligious Food Consortium, and a special United Way donor recognition reception and concert.
Prior to his work at the SSO, he worked at SU as director of development for major gifts and associate director of development for the School of Information Studies. In 2004, he was a recipient of the Greater Syracuse 40 Under 40 Award. He is a member of the American Symphony Orchestra League, the Arts and Cultural Leadership Alliance of Syracuse Steering Committee, the Consortium for Children’s Services Executive Committee and Leadership Greater Syracuse Class of 1999.