HomeAchievementsPresident Bertolino Honored with National Mentoring Award

President Bertolino Honored with National Mentoring Award

The American Council on Education (ACE) has awarded Joe Bertolino, president of Southern Connecticut State University, with the 2022 ACE Council of Fellows/Fidelity Investments Mentor Award at ACE2022, at the Council’s Annual Meeting in San Diego on March 6, 2022.

The Council of Fellows/Fidelity Investments Mentor Award is bestowed annually to acknowledge the substantial role of mentors in the success of ACE Fellows Program participants. President Bertolino has mentored five Fellows and has also nominated a Fellow for the program. Since its inception in 1965, the ACE Fellows Program has strengthened institutions and leadership in American post-secondary education by identifying and preparing nearly 2,000 faculty and administrators for senior positions in higher education leadership. More than 80 percent of Fellows have gone on to serve as chief executive officers of colleges or universities, provosts, vice presidents, and deans.

“Genuine, authentic, inspiring. These are just a few words that have been used to describe President Joe as he is affectionately called on his campus,” said Sherri Lind Hughes, assistant vice president for Community Strategy and Engagement at ACE. “I personally have seen how he has engaged with the Fellows and the investment of his time, talent, and resources in future leaders who will enhance the diversity of higher education.”

President Bertolino receiving his award, with Sherri Hughes, ACE assistant vice president for Community Strategy and Engagement, and ACE President Ted Mitchell

Bertolino has served as the sixth president of Southern Connecticut State University, a public institution of nearly 8,800 students in New Haven, Conn., since 2016. He has been a social justice educator for 28 years, and is passionate about student success and access to higher education.

A graduate of the ACE Fellows program (2010-2011), and past chair of the Council for Fellows, he currently is mentoring two Fellows: Moneque Walker-Pickett, JD, PhD, Saint Leo University, Florida; and Diana Woolfolk, PhD, CETYS University, Baja California, Mexico. He has also mentored three past Fellows: Erin Webster-Garrett, PhD, assistant vice provost for Relevant, Experiential and Applied Learning, Virginia Commonwealth University; Kathryn Jervis, PhD, dean of The School of Business, The College of New Jersey; and Jerome Drain, associate vice chancellor for Academic Instruction, Houston Community College.

Administrative leadership in higher education has long been Bertolino’s passion. From 2012-16, he served as president of Lyndon State College in Vermont, where he instituted a plan of “Moving Forward,” reintroducing Lyndon State as “the College” of the Northeast Kingdom of Vermont. Previously, he served as Vice President for Enrollment Management and Student Affairs at Queens College/City University of New York from 2004-2012.

During his time at the helm of Southern Connecticut State University, he has successfully pursued the following priorities: raising the university’s profile, expanding community outreach and partnerships, enhancing enrollment through both recruitment and retention, streamlining students’ paths to earning a degree, and building an inclusive and welcoming campus environment through an emphasis on social justice.

Currently, Bertolino serves on the boards of the American Association of University Administrators, the American Association of University Women, New Haven Mayors Economic Development Committee, New Haven Promise, the Central Connecticut Coast YMCA, and the New Haven International Festival of Arts.

He earned his doctorate in higher education administration and organizational leadership from Columbia University, Teachers College, a master’s in social work from Rutgers University, and a bachelor of science in psychology and sociology from the University of Scranton.

“Mentors play a critical role in developing the leaders of tomorrow, not just in academia but in organizations across every industry,” said Sangeeta Moorjani, head of Tax Exempt and Retirement Solutions, Fidelity Investments. “Fidelity would like to congratulate Southern Connecticut State University President Joe Bertolino as the winner of this year’s ACE Council of Fellows/Fidelity Investments Mentor Award, and applaud his efforts to provide direction and guidance to the next generation of higher education leadership.”

Since 2008, Fidelity Investments has been a generous supporter of the ACE Fellows Program, enabling the Council of Fellows to provide support for the discretionary fund of the Mentor Award winner’s institution, as well as the Fellows Fund for the Future, which provides stipends to defray costs of sponsoring a Fellow for qualified institutions.

ACE and Fidelity Investments® are independent entities and are not legally affiliated. The recipients of the Council of Fellows/Fidelity Investments Mentor Award are selected solely by the Executive Committee of the Council of Fellows. Fidelity employees are not involved, in any way, in determining, selecting, or approving the recipient or amount of any award. The selection criteria and guidelines for the award may be obtained directly from ACE.

About Fidelity Investments

Fidelity’s mission is to inspire better futures and deliver better outcomes for the customers and businesses we serve. With assets under administration of $11.8 trillion, including discretionary assets of $4.5 trillion as of December 31, 2021, we focus on meeting the unique needs of a diverse set of customers. Privately held for 75 years, Fidelity employs more than 57,000 associates who are focused on the long-term success of our customers. For more information about Fidelity Investments, visit https://www.fidelity.com/about-fidelity/our-company

About ACE

ACE is a membership organization that mobilizes the higher education community to shape effective public policy and foster innovative, high-quality practice. As the major coordinating body for the nation’s colleges and universities, our strength lies in our diverse membership of more than 1,700 colleges and universities, related associations, and other organizations in America and abroad. ACE is the only major higher education association to represent all types of U.S. accredited, degree-granting institutions: two-year and four-year, public and private. For more information, please visit www.acenet.edu or follow ACE on Twitter @ACEducation.


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