Co-Chairs

Donald J. Puglisi and Marichu C. Valencia

Donald Puglisi and Marichu Valencia are long-time UD supporters who have strengthened a variety of initiatives across the University, including athletics, the Alfred Lerner College of Business and Economics, the performing arts and the University Museums. The couple has long had an interest in philanthropy and supporting the arts. In 2010, Donald and Marichu established the Donald J. Puglisi Music Enrichment Fund to provide resources for a variety of uses in the Department of Music, including undergraduate scholarships, student ensembles, visiting professors, guest artists and instruments. They recently enhanced the Fund with a transformational gift of $5 million, the single largest contribution to the College of Arts and Sciences from a living person in the history of the University. Additionally, they established the Puglisi Challenge, designed to encourage other donor commitments to the music department at UD and bolster their impact by matching individual gifts with their own funds.

Don founded Puglisi & Associates in 1973, and has more than 25 years of experience with a variety of forms of structured financings. He served on UD’s faculty for 30 years starting in 1971, when he taught corporate finance, securities analysis and portfolio management, the pricing and uses of derivative instruments and the management of financial institutions. Don has served as a University of Delaware Public Service Fellow with the Office of the Treasurer for the State of Delaware and as a visiting research scholar with the Federal Home Loan Bank Board, where he was the recipient of two Outstanding Service Awards. He is member the Delaware Council for Economic Education and of UD’s Board of Trustees.

While living in Washington, D.C., Marichu provided design expertise at several design firms including Brennan Beer Gorman Monk Architects + Interiors, Marriott International, and Host Hotels & Resorts Inc. She most recently served at the U.S. Department of State as senior designer with the Bureau of Overseas Buildings Operations, Residential Design & Cultural Heritage Program until her retirement in 2013. Marichu currently serves on the executive committee of the board of directors for the Boys & Girls Clubs of Delaware, secretary to the board of trustees for the Delaware Art Museum, and member of the board for the Ronald McDonald House of Delaware. She lends her professional expertise as an Interior Designer Volunteer for The Ronald McDonald House and the Newark Senior Center.

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