Florida Atlantic University has named Christopher J. Delisio as its new vice president for Institutional Advancement and chief executive officer of the FAU Foundation.
Delisio brings more than 25 years of diverse development experience to FAU, most recently as the assistant vice president for development and executive director of principal gifts at The Ohio State University. He will begin his new position on Sept. 12.
In this critical role, Delisio will be responsible for the overall direction and management of community engagement, as well as all fundraising, development and alumni relations at FAU, providing strong leadership in identifying, cultivating and soliciting gifts to the institution. As CEO of the FAU Foundation, he will offer advice, counsel and leadership to the independent university funding organization, its staff and board of directors.
FAU President John Kelly said this appointment will begin a new era in fundraising for FAU, as Delisio will guide the transformation of the University’s engagement with its local, regional and global communities.
“Chris immediately stood out as the perfect fit to lead the charge here at FAU,” Kelly said. “He is a creative thinker with a proven track record who can be innovative but pragmatic and is highly receptive to new ideas. That is exactly what we need at FAU to elevate us to the next level of fundraising success.”
Delisio joined The Ohio State University in 2013 as its chief advancement officer for the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environment Sciences. He then became assistant vice president for development and chief advancement officer for the College of Arts and Sciences, and, most recently, assistant vice president for development and executive director of principal gifts.
In this most recent role, Delisio was responsible for assisting with the execution of a more than $500 million annual fundraising strategy and providing comprehensive leadership and oversight of the principal gift operation – gifts of $5 million or more. He simultaneously oversaw the College of Arts and Sciences’ $400 million campaign.
From 1995 to 2013, he held numerous development leadership positions in North Carolina and Ohio, including at the North Carolina Special Olympics; University of North Carolina Wilmington; University of Dayton; Ohio University; and Ohio Wesleyan University.
Delisio has a Master of Business Administration degree from Kent State University and a Bachelor of Arts degree from Hiram College. He also serves or has served on numerous industry-related boards.
Delisio said that he is thrilled to lead the fundraising efforts at a university that has clearly demonstrated it is a dynamic, national public research university.
“There are so many innovative and amazing things happening at FAU right now and the nation is taking notice,” said Delisio. “To be a part of this remarkable team in an area like South Florida is incredibly exciting. I share in both President Kelly and Chairman Abdol Moabery’s vision and look forward to making it a reality.”
His selection was made after a national search coordinated by international executive selection firm Parker Executive Search.