I had the pleasure of meeting Dr. Frank Macchiarola 15 to 18 years ago while I was a student at St. Francis College. He had not become the president at St. Francis while I was there, but he loved the school and he loved talking with the students there. When he visited, he always had a huge smile and positive words to say to students. When I met Dr. Macchiarola he was the dean or head of Cardoza Law School (’91 -’96). My friends all wanted to talk to him because they wanted to attend Cardoza after graduating SFC. I remember the comradeship he shared with my professor, Dr. Arthur Hughes. The two of them laughed such hearty laughs and I sat and admired them because I knew that I was sitting in a room with some men who were changing the world and the way people think. Besides he and Dr. Hughes were so radiant – they were beautiful. See what I mean:
Frank Macchiarola is most known for his work as NYC Chancellor. He held the position for five years under Mayor Ed Kotch and people remember him being effective. Back in the day, I dreamed of being NYC’s chancellor. I asked Mr. Macchiarola if being the chancellor was a difficult job. He asked me what I was studying at SFC. When I told him teaching, he said the world will be a better place if you are a teacher because there was a lot of red tape at the top. He must have seen my look of disappointment, so he added: go teach first and then you can become chancellor. I remember thinking being the chancellor must not be that great because he urged me away from it in a kind way.
Frank Macchiarola was the President and later Chancellor of St. Francis College from 1996 – 2008. Dr. Macchiarola is being waked at St. Francis College. How amazing is that? SFC is his alma mater. His legacy will long live on in all the men and women he inspired. RIP Frank Macchiarola – you were someone who changed NYC and I don’t think there are many people who can say they have done that.