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Cavanaugh Receives 2012 ACE Council of Fellows/Fidelity Investments Mentor Award

March 11, 2012


John C. Cavanaugh, chancellor of the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education, was presented today with the 2012 Council of Fellows/Fidelity Investments Mentor Award* during the opening plenary of ACE's 94th Annual Meeting in Los Angeles, CA.

The Council of Fellows/Fidelity Investments Mentor Award is presented annually to acknowledge the enormous role of mentors in the success of ACE Fellows Program participants. Established in 1965, the ACE Fellows Program is designed to strengthen institutions and leadership in American higher education by identifying and preparing faculty and staff for senior positions in college and university administration. More than 1,800 higher education leaders have participated in the ACE Fellows Program since its inception, with more than 300 Fellows having served as chief executive officers of colleges or universities and more than 1,300 having served as provosts, vice presidents and deans.

"The ACE Fellows Program has as its hallmark a deep and sustained focus on mentorship," said Sharon A. McDade, director of the Emerging Leaders Group/ACE Fellows Program. "Dr. Cavanaugh, the first Fellow to receive the Mentor Award, knows firsthand the benefit of mentoring and has committed a significant amount of his own time to serve as a mentor to five Fellows over the past eight years. We are grateful to him and to the thousands of presidents and senior leaders who have served the ACE Fellows Program in this way."

Since 2008, Fidelity Investments' generous support of the Fellows Program has enabled the Council of Fellows to provide support for the discretionary fund of the Mentor Award winner's institution as well as the Fellows Fund for the Future, which provides stipends to institutions unable to afford the cost of sponsoring a Fellow.

"Fidelity is proud to support the ACE Fellows Program, and we congratulate Dr. Cavanaugh as this year's Mentor Award recipient," said John Ragnoni, executive vice president for Fidelity Investments. "Fidelity recognizes that leadership development in higher education has never been more important and salutes ACE and Dr. Cavanaugh for their commitment to mentoring and developing future leaders in higher education."

In addition to being the first ACE Fellow (class of 1994-95) to receive the Mentor Award, Cavanaugh is also the first winner to have been mentored by a previous Mentor Award honoree, David P. Roselle, former president of the University of Delaware and the 2005 recipient of the award.

Cavanaugh was named chancellor of the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education, which operates 14 universities with a combined enrollment of nearly 120,000 students, in 2008. From 2002-08, he served as president of the 10,500-student University of West Florida. Previously, he was provost and vice chancellor for academic affairs at the University of North Carolina Wilmington and also held various positions at the University of Delaware, including vice provost for academic programs and planning and association provost for graduate studies.

Cavanaugh attended St. Joseph's College (PA) before earning a bachelor's degree in psychology with high honors from the University of Delaware in 1975. He also holds both a master's degree and a doctorate in psychology from the University of Notre Dame (IN) and served as a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Minnesota's Center for Research in Human Learning and the Institute of Child Development. He is a fellow of the American Psychological Association, the Association for Psychological Science and the Gerontological Society of America.

Previous Recipients of the Council of Fellows Mentor Award (Titles reflect status at time of award):

  • 2011: Robert Caret, president, Towson University (MD), and president-elect, University of Massachusetts
  • 2010: Marvalene Hughes, president, Dillard University (LA), and Stephen Joel Trachtenberg, president emeritus, The George Washington University (DC)
  • 2009: Robert Hemenway, chancellor, University of Kansas
  • 2008: Robert Glidden, president emeritus, Ohio University
  • 2007: Carol Cartwright, president emeritus, Kent State University (OH)
  • 2006: Jerry Sue Thornton, president, Cuyahoga Community College (OH)
  • 2005: Robert Carothers, president, University of Rhode Island, and David Roselle, president, University of Delaware

*ACE and Fidelity Investments ® are independent entities and are not legally affiliated. The recipients of the Council of Fellows/Fidelity Investments Mentor Award are selected solely by the Executive Committee of the Council of Fellows. Fidelity employees are not involved, in any way, in determining, selecting or approving the recipient or amount of any award. The selection criteria and guidelines for the award may be obtained directly from ACE.

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