Syracuse University Magazine

Forging Strong Alumni Bonds

King Darren Goldgerg To this day, Patricia Mautino '64, G'66 doesn't know who recommended her for the SU Alumni Association Board of Directors six years ago, although she has often wondered. "I'd like to thank whoever it was," says Mautino, who has since served as board vice president and is now on its executive committee. "It has been a very rewarding experience." A former elementary/secondary school administrator in Central New York, she especially enjoyed leading a committee dedicated to forging relationships with students in hopes of keeping them connected to the University as alumni. That committee established the Student and Young Alumni Advisory Board, a select group nominated by deans and senior staff, to advise the Office of Alumni Relations. "It was so much fun developing friendships with students and getting a peek at their lives and the world that lies ahead of them," she says. "I'm envious of them, because I want to start over and get to be every one of them!"

According to Ellen King, executive director of alumni relations, that exuberance is Mautino's trademark. "Pat is a tremendous asset to the SUAA board," she says. "Through her previous experiences on other boards, she brings knowledge and an awareness of how to get things done. And her energy and enthusiasm is felt by everyone."

Mautino is currently leading a study of the association's bylaws and operating structure that covers its mission and vision, relationships with clubs and affiliate groups, the SU Board of Trustees, and other entities that are central to its purpose. "We are looking at the structure of the whole Alumni Association and how it operates, trying to define how we best organize to empower ourselves to further our University," she says. "The association exists to serve Syracuse University, which requires us to have a complementary relationship with the Board of Trustees based on mutual support. That's always been the case, but we want to energize that relationship and become more synergistic in directly furthering the future of the University."

Both Mautino and her husband, Louis Mautino '61, G'62, feel a deep sense of loyalty and gratitude to SU, where he played on the 1959 national championship football team, and where they met. They demonstrate their passion for the University through their generosity of time, money, and spirit, and encourage other alumni to do the same-not only for the benefits to SU, but to enjoy the ensuing personal rewards of giving. "Regardless of our experience, everyone who comes here is a better person for it, better prepared for our life and world," says Mautino, who is also a member of the iSchool's advisory board and president of the Onondaga County Public Library Foundation board. "Now it's our turn to support the University in whatever way we can and be active in the growth of its future, whether by giving back financially or finding another way to reconnect and re-engage with the culture and academic life of the University. It's a wonderful and rewarding opportunity that is there for all of us Syracuse University alums."

—Amy Speach