Manhattanville College Announces
New Chair of the Board of Trustees

Michael Dunn, a digital marketing and strategy consultant, has been appointed as the new Chair of the Manhattanville College Board of Trustees as the college begins a new era. Dunn is retired from Georgia Pacific where he was Senior Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer.

A 1977 graduate of Manhattanville, Dunn has been a on the board of the college since 2015 most recently serving as Vice Chair and a member of the executive committee. His appointment as Board Chair comes at a time of great opportunity as Manhattanville embarks on a new strategic plan, continuing to evolve and expand strategic areas while embracing its roots as a liberal arts college. The board has also hired Interim President Louise Feroe, Ph.D., to take the helm during this time of strategic growth. 


“Manhattanville College is in its moment,’’ said Dunn. “The pandemic created challenges, but it also created opportunities for us to reinvent ourselves, keeping the best of our traditions while exploring new ways to attract students and expand our offerings. Our new School of Nursing and Health Sciences and our Center for Design Thinking are just two examples. I’m excited to use my energy and my skills in management and marketing to lead us through this sea of change and promote all that we have to offer as a top liberal arts college.’’


Dunn noted that the college launched its School of Nursing and Health Sciences in less than a year, from conception to New York State Department of Education approval, with the first class beginning during the pandemic. Manhattanville has a history of addressing public health needs during times of national crisis. The college started its first nursing school during World War II.


Interim President Feroe praised Dunn as an energetic and charismatic leader who will be a major asset for the school with his experience successfully managing five major mergers and acquisitions in the paper industry and his expertise as a marketing consultant. 


“Manhattanville is poised to move confidently into the future, and we look forward to working with Mr. Dunn to guide a search for a new president.” said Feroe. “Our incoming class this fall will show the largest year-over-year increase for decades so we know we are headed in the right direction. Under Michael’s leadership we can continue to build a college that engages its students and gives them the tools they need to make a difference in their world.’’


Dunn has won awards for innovation in product development, including from the American Marketing Association, which awarded him their B2B Silver Effectiveness Award, called the “Effie,” for his innovation work. He retired from Georgia Pacific in 2019 and has since started the James Gate Group, advising companies on marketing, digital marketing, strategy and innovation development and execution. 


The board of the college has recently been bolstered by the addition of four new members, all graduates of Manhattanville: John Calvao graduated in 1994 with a degree in History; Cathleen Collins graduated from Manhattanville in 1969 with a degree in English and went on to earn her Juris Doctor; Stephanie Kloos Donoghue graduated in 1982 with a degree in Studio Art and English; and June R. Wang graduated in 1967 with a degree in Mathematics. The new board members bring decades of professional experience in non-profit leadership, law, finance, telecommunications, and marketing and communications.


The 13th president of the college, Michael Geisler, Ph.D., retired as of June 30. One of Geisler’s signature accomplishments was the creation of the school’s Center for Design Thinking. The center has helped to attract new students and is a nexus between Manhattanville’s liberal arts tradition and a new way to use critical thinking skills compatible with the modern era.