Paulus Appointed as Whitman’s New Assistant Dean for Advancement and External Engagement

Portrait of Michael Paulus

Syracuse University’s Martin J. Whitman School of Management is pleased to announce that Michael Paulus, Ph.D., has been appointed to serve as the Whitman School’s next assistant dean for advancement and external engagement.


Paulus brings more than a decade of experience in higher education fundraising and leadership to his new role at the Whitman School. Most recently, Paulus was the top advancement professional for Syracuse University Athletics, where he served as senior associate athletic director for advancement. During his tenure, Paulus built and led a team that doubled Syracuse University Athletics annual average fundraising totals, culminating last year when they achieved its highest annual fundraising total in school history at $45 million. Key to that success was the work Paulus’ team did to increase major donors to Syracuse Athletics from less than 50 individuals in 2021, to more than 220 major donors in 2023. His team also successfully raised more than $50 million in commitments to complete Phase 1 of a capital campaign, supporting construction of the new Athletics Entryway, Football Operations Building and Olympic Sports Center.


“I am thrilled to welcome Michael Paulus to the Whitman School and look forward to collaborating with him to build a best-in-class fundraising and alumni engagement team,” says Mike Haynie, Whitman School Executive Dean and Vice Chancellor for Strategic Initiatives and Innovation. “Michael is a talented, dynamic, and values-based leader who brings a demonstrated track record of effectively managing complex fundraising operations.”


Prior to joining Syracuse University, Paulus served as senior associate athletic director for development at the U.S. Naval Academy, where he led a team that achieved a record $110 million in philanthropic giving. Before the Naval Academy, he held fundraising roles of increasing responsibility at the University of Mississippi, Mount St. Mary’s University and Virginia Commonwealth University. Paulus also previously held the position of adjunct professor at the Richard J. Bolte, Sr. School of Business at Mount St. Mary’s University, where he taught graduate and undergraduate level courses in development and marketing for the MBA and sport management programs.


“I’m excited to join the Whitman team at a pivotal point in the school’s history,” says Paulus. “I look forward to working closely with our leadership team, faculty and staff, alumni, students and friends of the Whitman community to collaboratively advance the ambitious vision set for the future of the Whitman School.”


At Whitman, Paulus will play a central leadership role defining and implementing an approach to advancement and stakeholder engagement aligned with Whitman’s academic strategy and focused on supporting new and innovative opportunities for students, faculty and alumni. In this new role, he will work closely with Interim Dean Alex McKelvie, Director of Development Tyler Harding, and Director of Alumni Engagement Alison Kessler, to support the dynamic fundraising needs of Whitman’s academic departments and student programs, and lead efforts to expand and enhance the scope of the Whitman’s alumni engagement activities.


Alex McKelvie, Interim Dean of the Whitman School, is “delighted that Michael will join the Whitman leadership team. Michael’s prior accomplishments are a testament to his ability to conceive and deliver innovation to stakeholder engagement strategy, and his academic background will uniquely support the translation of Whitman’s academic priorities to successful advancement initiatives. I look forward to Michael’s contribution to our collective efforts to position the Whitman School of Management as a global leader in contemporary business education and research.”


A Syracuse native, Paulus is a graduate of Christian Brothers Academy. He earned a bachelor of arts in kinesiology and health sciences from the College of William and Mary, a master of education in sport leadership from Virginia Commonwealth University, an MBA from Mount St. Mary's and a Ph.D. in higher education administration from the University of Mississippi.


Paulus will formally begin his position at the Whitman School in February 2024.

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