Board of Trustees Biographies

Ms. Maureen Conway (Appointed 2011)

Ms. Maureen Conway is a retired executive from Hewlett-Packard Company having served as VP and Chief Information Officer.  Most recently she was responsible for HP’s Emerging Market Solutions Group, pioneering applications in technology and business to benefit the social and economic needs of developing economies.    She was honored as a WPU Distinguished Alumni in 2003 and delivered the WPU commencement address in 2006.  Ms. Conway earned a B.A. from William Paterson University, an M.S. from Montclair State University and an M.B.A. from Temple University.

Ms. Conway resides in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Ms. Lourdes Cortez (Appointed 2014)

Ms. Cortez has served as President and CEO of North Jersey Federal Credit Union since 2005.  Under her leadership, membership has significantly increased and currently exceeds 32,000 with the institution holding assets of 214 million dollars.  Ms. Cortez is a recipient of numerous awards, including the NJ Biz “Top Fifty Business Women of New Jersey”, “Women of Vision Award” and the “Women Changing Paterson” award.  She is a member of the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, Assistant Treasurer of the Executive Women of New Jersey and serves on the Board of Directors for the Boys and Girls Club of Paterson and Passaic.      

Ms. Cortez resides in Bergen County.

Mr. Robert Guarasci (Appointed 2009)

Mr. Guarasci is President and CEO of New Jersey Community Development Corporation, a private, non-profit community development and social service agency founded in 1994 and based in Paterson. The mission of NJCDC is to create opportunities to transform lives through initiatives in the areas of housing, education, youth development and community building. In addition to his service on the WPU Board, Mr. Guarasci also holds gubernatorial appointments to the NJ Interagency Council on Homelessness and the Paterson Great Falls National Historical Park Advisory Commission. Mr. Guarasci is the Founder of the Community Charter School of Paterson and serves on the Board of Trustees of the Paterson Alliance, a network of non-profit agencies serving Paterson residents. Mr. Guarasci earned a B.A. from George Washington University.

Mr. Guarasci resides in Passaic County.

Mr. Frederick L. Gruel (Appointed 1992)

Mr. Gruel recently retired as the President and CEO of AAA New Jersey Auto Club and has been with the company for over twenty-six years. Prior to that Mr. Gruel held several positions in higher education including Vice President of Administration and Finance at Thomas A. Edison State College, Trenton, NJ and Assistant Director, Office of Community College Programs for the State of New Jersey, Department of Higher Education. He earned a B.S. from Fordham University and an MBA from Florida State University.

Mr. Gruel resides in Somerset County.

Ms. Anna Marie Mascolo (Appointed 2009)

Ms. Mascolo is recently retired from Nassau County Community College (NCC) as Executive Assistant to the President and Counsel to the NCC Board of Trustees.  For 12 years, she served as Vice President for Legal and External Affairs and Counsel to the NCC board.  She has over 32 years' experience in labor and employee relations and human resources.  Ms. Mascolo has served in the higher education field for over 30 years.  She has been admitted to the New Jersey Bar and the New York Bar and is a member of the American Bar Association, the National Association for College and University Attorneys,  and the Bergen County Bar Association.  Ms. Mascolo earned a B.S. and an M.A. from Seton Hall University and a J.D. from St. John's University School of Law.  Ms. Mascolo was a participant in the Harvard University Institute for Educational Management.

Ms. Mascolo resides in Bergen County

    

Mr. Brad Neilley  (Appointed 2014)

Mr. Neilley is the Global Vice President for Human Resources at Pentax Medical, a worldwide manufacturer of medical devices.  Prior to Pentax, Mr. Neilley has provided global HR strategies and leadership skills for Johnson & Johnson and ABM Industries and led management and organizational projects for The New York Times.  Mr. Neilley has professional and community affiliations with numerous human resource management groups and previously served on the William Paterson University Foundation Board.  He earned a B.A. from William Paterson and a M.B.A. in International Business from Fairleigh Dickinson University.

Mr. Neilley resides in Mercer County.                                                                              

Ms. Linda Niro (Appointed 2009)

Ms. Linda Niro served as the Executive Vice President and Chief Risk Officer of Grand Bank, N.A. in Hamilton Square, New Jersey. Previously, she served as Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Provident Financial Services, Inc. and The Provident Bank. She has over thirty-eight years experience in the banking industry and was with Provident for thirty-one years. As a member of the executive leadership team of the bank, Ms. Niro shared responsibility for establishing the strategic direction of the company and the bank. Ms. Niro earned a B.A. from William Paterson University and is a graduate of the National School of Finance and Management and the Executive Development Program, both at Fairfield University in Connecticut. Ms. Niro serves the Foundation Board of William Paterson University.

Ms. Niro resides in Somerset County.

Mr. William J. Pesce (Appointed 2002)

Mr. Pesce retired as the President & CEO of John Wiley & Sons, Inc. in April 2011. He was a member of Wiley’s leadership team for 22 years, serving as President & CEO for 13 years. He has extensive experience leading a global company; recruiting and developing collaborative leadership teams; building and sustaining a high performance organizational culture; creating and executing strategic plans; and consummating acquisitions and partnerships. While at Wiley, Mr. Pesce was actively engaged in the development of technology-enabled products and services for the academic and professional communities.  He is on the Board of Overseers of the Stern School of Business at NYU and the Board of Directors of John Wiley & Sons, Inc.  Mr. Pesce was inducted in the New Jersey Business Hall of Fame in 2012.  He earned a B.A. from William Paterson University and an MBA from New York University.

Mr. Pesce resides in Somerset County. 

Dr. Henry J. Pruitt, Jr. (Appointed 1983)

Dr. Pruitt has been an educator for over 30 years serving in many capacities including as teacher, college department chairperson and principal. He retired as Principal of the Janis E. Dismus Middle School, Englewood, NJ in 1994. Dr. Pruitt is an educational consultant and serves on many community boards, including the Teaneck Public School Board, of which he is the current president. He has served as Chair and Vice Chair of the Board of the New Jersey Association of State Colleges and Universities. Dr. Pruitt has received numerous community awards for his educational leadership and promotion of diversity. He earned a B.A. from Hunter College, an M.A. from New York University and an M.Ed., and Ed.D. from Teachers College, Columbia University.

Dr. Pruitt resides in Bergen County.

Mr. Robert H. Taylor,Trustee Emeritus (Appointed 1990)

Mr. Taylor is a retired Vice President for Engineering, Design and Construction for AT&T.  Mr. Taylor worked as a development engineer and then in various management positions during a 40-year career in the Bell System, including 32 years at Bell Telephone  Laboratories  He is a former trustee of  Thomas A. Edison State College.  He represented WPU on the board of the New Jersey Association of State Colleges and Universities for eight years, including a term as chair.  Mr. Taylor has served the community on various boards and associations, and he is an Elder at The Presbyterian Church in his community.  Mr. Taylor earned a Bachelors of Engineering in Mechanical Engineering from Yale University.

Mr. Taylor resides in Somerset County.

Ms. Nazila Yekanifard (Appointed 2014)

Nazila Yekanifard is presently a junior studying Biotechnology with a possible minor in Public Health.  Prior to her serving as a Student Trustee, Nazila fulfilled her role as the Representative for the College of Science and Health while being an active and engaged member for the Student Government Association Academic Affairs Committee. She is involved in numerous extracurricular activities, among them being a William Paterson University orientation leader, a member of the Pioneer Leadership Institute, and the current president and founder of the Yoga and Meditation Club.

Nazila looks forward to continuing her service to the university community and plans to graduate in the spring 2015.

Dr. Deborah Zastocki  (Appointed 2012)       

Dr. Deborah Zastocki is the President and CEO of Chilton Hospital in Pequannock, New Jersey.  One of only 25 female hospital CEO’s in New Jersey, Dr. Zastocki serves on the Veterans Health Administration East Coast Board of Directors, is secretary of the New Jersey Hospital Association Board of Directors, is a member of the American Heart Association Regional Health Policy Board of Directors (Region 2), and is a member of the Board of Commerce and Industry Association of New Jersey (CIANJ). Dr. Zastocki earned her Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree from the University of Rhode Island, a Master of Arts in Nursing and Master of Education in Community Health from Columbia University, and in 2008, was among the first to earn a Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) degree from UMDNJ.

Dr. Zastocki resides in Morris County.

Dr. Kathleen Waldron (Appointed 2010) Ex Officio
President

Dr. Kathleen Waldron was appointed the seventh President of William Paterson University as of August 2, 2010.  She previously served for five years as president of Bernard M. Baruch College of City University of New York and for six years as Dean of the School of Business, Public Administration and Information Sciences at Long Island University’s Brooklyn Campus. Prior to her transition to higher education administration, Dr. Waldron held numerous senior management positions at Citibank over a 14-year period, including President of Citibank International in Miami from 1991 through 1995. Dr. Waldron has served as a member of the U.S. Presidential Committee on the Fulbright Program, a member of the Board of Directors of Shands Hospital in Gainesville, Florida, a member of the Florida International Bankers Association and a director of the Fulbright Association. She is a member of the Latin American Studies Association, the Financial Women’s Association, the Academy of Management, the Economics Club, the Association for a Better New York, and currently serves on the board of The Tinker Foundation. She is also on the Advisory Board of the Women’s City Club of New York. Dr. Waldron earned her Ph.D. in Latin American History from Indiana University.

President Waldron resides in Passaic County.