Frank and Marisa Martire Honored with Building Naming

Frank and Marisa Martire

News Story: September 17, 2014

Sacred Heart University’s new academic building on the corner of Park Avenue and Jefferson Street in Fairfield will be named for Frank ’69 and Marisa Martire. The University’s Board of Trustees voted on Friday to name the building the Frank and Marisa Martire Business & Communications Center. The building will house the John F. Welch College of Business and the Department of Communications & Media Studies.

“We are honoring the Martires in recognition of years of service and leadership as well as a multi-million dollar philanthropic commitment to the University,” said James T. Morley, Jr., chair of SHU’s Board of Trustees.

“In the past 10 to 15 years, Sacred Heart really started to grow and change and (SHU President) John (Petillo) has taken that to an even greater level. It made us want to become involved—both financially and with our time,” said Frank who has been a member of the University’s Board of Trustees since 2005.The couple said they made the gift because they are excited to be part of the recent rapid growth at SHU and because they want to lead by example in encouraging other alumni to become donors.

Both Frank and Marisa grew up in Bridgeport, and Frank attended Notre Dame before earning a bachelor’s degree in economics from Sacred Heart. Right out of college, he spent his first 10 years of employment in the Technology Department at Connecticut National Bank. He then went on to spend the next 10 years with Citicorp. Since then, he has moved several times for his career, including a 15-year stop in Wisconsin where he served most of the time as chief executive officer of Metavante Corporation. These days, Frank and Marisa call Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla. (located near Jacksonville) home, although they also own a home in Connecticut. The family (the couple has three grown children) made the move when a merger led to Frank’s current job as chairman and CEO of FIS.

The Frank and Marisa Martire Business & Communications Center will provide an active trading floor, “smart” classrooms, interactive labs, two large studios for television, video and film production, as well as industry-standard post-production facilities, screening venues and multimedia classrooms. Other features include a two-story atrium; a multi-media forum for leadership institutes, lectures and screenings; satellite-equipped classrooms for interaction with other University campuses; classrooms for use by the entire University; faculty offices; conference rooms and lounges for meetings between faculty and students; a café; and elegant landscaping infused with walking paths and benches for informal meetings. The building has been designed by Sasaki Associates—the same firm that designed the University’s award-winning Chapel of the Holy Spirit and Linda E. McMahon Commons.

“I cannot begin to express the gratitude that the University community owes to Frank and Marisa. They are generous and forward-thinking. We are incredibly lucky that they see what we are trying to achieve and want to be a part of it,” Petillo said.

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