Meet Assumption's 16th President, Francesco C. Cesareo, Ph.D.
To view a copy of Pres. Cesareo's inauguration speech, please click here.
Francesco C. Cesareo, Ph.D.
President, Assumption College
A distinguished academic and Catholic education leader, Dr. Cesareo is the former dean of the McAnulty College and Graduate School of Liberal Arts at Duquesne University in Pittsburgh, PA. He was elected by Assumption’s Board of Trustees as the 16th President of Assumption College in February and assumed his duties in July.
Dr. Cesareo is a historian who specializes in the Renaissance and Reformation periods, has published widely on the Catholic Reformation, the history of 15th and 16th century Rome and on the Renaissance papacy. His work has also focused on Renaissance education, Church history and Catholic higher education. In addition, he has been a frequent commentator for local media in Cleveland and Pittsburgh, as well as national media on issues regarding Catholic higher education and the Catholic Church in general.
In 1986, Dr. Cesareo began his teaching career as a member of the history department at Cathedral Preparatory Seminary in Elmhurst, New York. From there he joined the faculty of Albertus Magnus College as an assistant professor of history. In 1989, Dr. Cesareo became a member of the history department at John Carroll University in Cleveland as an assistant professor. He was subsequently promoted to associate professor in 1993 and then to full professor in 1999. In 1997 he was appointed the founding director of the Institute of Catholic Studies, a position he held until 2004 when he assumed the position of dean at Duquesne University. He also held the John J. and Mary Jane Breen Chair in Catholic Studies. As director of the Institute he successfully raised an endowment of $4.8 million for the work of the Institute.
In addition to being a dedicated teacher, nominated three times for the Distinguished Faculty Award at John Carroll University, and an accomplished scholar of the Catholic intellectual tradition, Dr. Cesareo has served on many boards, among them the Loyola Institute for the Study of Catholic Culture at Loyola University, New Orleans, the National Seminar on Jesuit Higher Education, the Catholic Ministry of Health care Professionals in Cleveland, the Faith and Great Ideas Program at Seattle University, St. Paul’s Seminary Advisory Board in Pittsburgh. He has also has received numerous fellowships, among them the Delmas Foundation Fellowship and the Fulbright-Hays Fellowship. He is the author of two books, including his most recent book, A Shepherd in Their Midst: The Episcopacy of Girolamo Seripando: 1554-1563, and of numerous articles and book reviews published in such leading journals as The Sixteenth-Century Journal, The Catholic Historical Review, and the Renaissance Quarterly. He has also served as a Fulbright Scholar at both the University of Rome and the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome, Italy, and completed a year-long Faculty Fellowship for Academic Leadership supported by the Mandel Foundation.
Additionally, Dr. Cesareo has served as the managing editor of Archivum Historicum Societatis Iesu, an international scholarly journal published semi-annually by the Jesuit Historical Institute in Rome and the Institute of Catholic Studies at John Carroll University. He also completed administrative development programs at Harvard University and Boston College.
Dr. Cesareo, a native of Queens, New York, graduated summa cum laude from Cathedral College of the Immaculate Conception in Douglaston, NY, and earned his M.A. and Ph.D. in Late Medieval/Early Modern European history from Fordham University. He and his wife, Filomena, are the proud parents of three children—Marianna (13), Gianfranco (10), and Massimo (8).