Syracuse University announced the election of five new members to its Board of Trustees, all with extraordinary experience in business and philanthropy. Individually and collectively, these new administrators have already enhanced the student experience and advanced the University’s mission by supporting scholarships, programs and services that prepare students for success.
New members are Steven R. Becker ’73, Raquel-Ann “Roxi” Nurse McNabb ’98, G’99, Sandra Cordova Micek ’91, Edward G. Mitzen ’88 and Michael R. Venutolo ’77.
“The Board of Directors welcomes these new members and is grateful for the passion and purpose they bring to their new role,” said Board Chair Kathleen A. Walters ’73. “I am particularly impressed with how they have each demonstrated their commitment to our shared values through their service-oriented work and philanthropy. Each brings unique experiences and wisdom that will help us meet the challenges facing higher education.
Chancellor Kent Syverud says these distinguished and diverse professionals bring tremendous value to the governance process. “We are grateful that these accomplished alumni are willing to dedicate their time and resources to Syracuse University. Their dedication to Syracuse will ensure that this generation of students and generations to come have opportunities for academic, personal and professional success,” said Chancellor Syverud.
Steven R. Becker ’73
Becker is executive vice president, treasurer and chief compliance officer for the nation’s largest wine and spirits distributor, Southern Glazer’s Wine and Spirits, which operates in 44 states, the District of Columbia and Canada. He is responsible for the company’s cash management functions, including banking relationships, cash management, mortgages, leases, real estate transactions and all financings. In addition, he is responsible for managing the company’s governmental affairs on both a state and national basis, and for complying with all regulatory aspects of the company.
Prior to Southern, Becker worked for Knickerbocker Liquors Corporation, first as sales manager for the New York distributor’s wine division, before becoming deputy general manager of sales and then assistant to the president.
Becker serves on the Advisory Board of the Martin J. Whitman School of Management, the Supply Chain Advisory Board of Franklin, and the Board of Governors of Hillel. The appointment of Professor Steven R. Becker of Supply Chain Management reflects his commitment to his alma mater.
He graduated in 1973 with a BS in finance from the Whitman School. He received a Juris Doctorate from Boston University School of Law in 1976 and an MBA from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania in 1978.
Becker and his wife, Abbe, live in Boca Raton, Florida, and have two adult children, Robert ’05 (Whitman School) and Meredith.
Raquel-Ann “Roxi” Nurse McNabb ’98, G’99
McNabb is a well-known public figure, philanthropist and advocate for making athletics accessible to all young people. She founded the Caris Sports Foundation in 2019 to give young athletes in Arizona the opportunity to participate in organized sports by removing financial barriers and covering the costs associated with recreational and competitive sports, from equipment to fees. registration. She is also a co-founder with her husband, Life Trustee Donovan McNabb ’98, of the Donovan McNabb Fund, and a partner in their philanthropy.
McNabb graduated from Syracuse University in 1998 and earned a bachelor’s degree in physical education from the School of Education with a minor in history. She was the point guard for the women’s basketball team, was twice named Most Valuable Player and Athlete of the Year in 1997, and was on the Big East All-Star Varsity Team. three times.
In 1999, she earned an MPA from the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs. She also earned a Master of Education in Educational Policy from the University of Pennsylvania in 2007. She is the Nominating Chair for the School of Education Board of Visitors.
For Syracuse University, the McNabbs supported athletics, including naming the home of the Syracuse women’s basketball team and the school of education with the establishment of the Donovan McNabb and Raquel-Endowment Fund. Ann Nurse McNabb Graduate Assistant.
McNabb and her husband live in Phoenix with their four children, Alexis, Sariah, Donovan Jr. and Devin.
Sandra Cordova Micek ’91
Micek is President and CEO of WTTW | WFMT (Window to the World Communications Inc.). WTTW is Chicago’s PBS station and WFMT is its classical music radio station. She has over 30 years of management experience in media and marketing.
Before WTTW | WFMT, Micek was senior vice president of global brands at Hyatt, where she oversaw marketing for 15 brands and co-led the diversity resource group, Latinos at Hyatt. Micek has also held executive positions at USA TODAY/Gannett, NBC Universal, Turner Broadcasting and Yahoo and has served as a management consultant in the media, entertainment and telecommunications strategy practice at Accenture in San Francisco and London. During her professional career, she has won numerous awards, including a Silver Lion at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity.
Micek earned a BS in Television, Radio and Film from SI Newhouse School of Public Communications and an MBA from The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, where she was a Ford Motor Company Fellow.
Micek sits on the boards of PBS, Kartemquin Films, Ravinia Festival, the Chicago Community Trust and the Economic Club of Chicago. She was a McCormick Foundation Fellow in Leadership Greater Chicago’s Daniel Burnham Program and is a member of the Commercial Club and the Association of Latino Professionals for America.
Her service at Syracuse University includes chairing the Newhouse School Advisory Board and she established the Cordova Micek Family Scholarship to expand opportunities for Latinas to attend college.
Micek lives in the Chicago metro area with her husband, Marc Micek ’92 (Newhouse/Whitman), and their two children.
Edward G. Mitzen ’88
Mitzen is the co-founder of The Business for Good Foundation (BFG), a non-profit organization dedicated to using entrepreneurial and business skills to uplift people in underserved communities by focusing on venture philanthropy, support for entrepreneurs and impact donations. Mitzen and his wife, Lisa Mitzen, founded BFG to “invest in people to build better businesses, stronger communities, and a more equitable world.”
Mitzen also founded Fingerpaint, a full-service health and wellness advertising and marketing company. He is a serial entrepreneur, having launched four businesses totaling over $1 billion in combined revenue, including Palio, a communications agency that was later purchased by Syneos Health.
He is a frequent lecturer on entrepreneurship and philanthropy at universities, and a frequent contributor to Forbes, Fortune, and other business publications. His first book, “More Than a Number” was published in 2019.
Mitzen was named Saratoga Living “Person of the Year”, “Executive of the Year” by Albany Business Review and Med Ad News “Industry Person of the Year. He was also a two-time finalist for E&Y’s “Entrepreneur of the Year”.
Mitzen graduated in 1988 with a BS in Biology from the College of Arts and Sciences. He also earned an MBA from the Simon School of Business at the University of Rochester in 1995.
His service at Syracuse University includes serving on the Dean’s Advisory Council for the College of Arts and Sciences. Mitzen has supported the Dean of Arts and Science Fund and the SUSTAIN Program Endowment.
Mitzen and his wife, Lisa, live on a farm in Saratoga Springs, New York. Mitzen has three adult children: Emily, Nicholas and Grace.
Michael R. Venutolo ’77
Venutolo is the Managing Director of Raymond International Group, an industrial machinery manufacturing company that is a leader in the global engineering and construction industry, and specializes in engineering and construction services, the manufacture, installation and maintenance of pipelines for the water, oil, gas and petrochemical industries. Raymond International Group has been operating in the pipeline services and specialist construction industry in Saudi Arabia and throughout the Middle East for over 40 years.
Venutolo earned a Bachelor of Science degree from the College of Engineering and Computer Science in 1977, where he majored in civil engineering.
His service to Syracuse University includes being a founding member of the Middle East, North Africa, and Turkey (MENAT) Regional Council, the first regional council established by the University outside the United States.
Venutolo has set up a unique internship for students of the College of Engineering and Computer Science. To date, 30 civil and environmental engineering students have been sponsored to study various drinking water supply and transmission technologies in the arid Arabian Peninsula.
Venutolo provided support for the Construction Engineering Lab at the College of Engineering and Computer Science and participated as a judge for [email protected]
Venutolo and his wife, Kim, live in London and New Jersey. He has three adult children: David, Christopher and Danielle.