President's Office

Dr. Gerard J. Rooney currently serves as the seventh president of St. John Fisher College. He took office in July 2015.

Dr. Gerard Rooney holds a doctoral degree from the Department of Educational Leadership and Policy, Higher Education Program, at the University at Buffalo, State University of New York. He was the recipient of the Edwin D. Duryea, Jr. Higher Education Memorial Award. He completed his undergraduate degree in sociology at Villanova University and his master's degree in educational administration and supervision at Fairfield University. In addition, he received a certificate in Higher Education Leadership from the Harvard University Graduate School of Education's Institute for Educational Management.

President Rooney addressing students at Commencement.

President Rooney addressing students at Commencement.

He has over 30 years of experience in higher education and executive administration. His most recent role at the College was executive vice president for enrollment, advancement, and planning, and included oversight of admissions; financial aid; marketing and communications; corporate, foundation, and government relations; institutional research; intercollegiate athletics; and institutional advancement. He had additional responsibilities in the areas of strategic planning and community partnerships and outreach.

During his tenure in enrollment management, Dr. Rooney launched Fisher’s College Bound program in 2006, a weeklong residential program designed to help low-income, first-generation high school students navigate the college search and selection process. Since its inception, the College Bound Program has served more than 250 students, of which approximately 95 percent planned to attend college. A first-generation student himself, Dr. Rooney is committed to maintaining college access for this population of students.

"I am committed to carrying the vision of our founders forward, to advance the mission of the College, and to continue its good work for its students, its alumni, and for the people around us. I will seek opportunities to make the Fisher educational experience transformational for all of our students." ~ Dr. Rooney

President Rooney addressing student leaders at the annual dinner at the president's residence prior to the start of the fall semester.

President Rooney addressing student leaders at the annual dinner at the president's residence prior to the start of the fall semester.

Dr. Rooney is a member of the board of Holy Sepulchre Cemetery, the Greater Rochester Chamber of Commerce, and the Association for the Blind and Visually Impaired (ABVI) and Goodwill of the Finger Lakes, all in Rochester, NY, as well as the Board of Advisors for the National Research Center for College & University Admissions™ (NRCCUA®). He is also a council member of the Rochester Regional Health Advisory Council, and served as a 2016 campaign cabinet member for the United Way of Greater Rochester. In addition, he serves as a peer evaluator for the Middle States Commission on Higher Education, and previously was a member of the Middle States Regional Council of the College Board.

Since fall 2011, he has taught in the Doctor of Education in Executive Leadership Program at Fisher. Previously, he was an adjunct assistant professor at the University at Buffalo, teaching graduate coursework in the Higher Education Program.

He and his wife, Susan, reside in Pittsford and have four children, two of whom are alumni of Fisher.

In March 2015, Dr. Rooney was named the 7th president of St. John Fisher College. He took office on July 1, 2015.