University of Scranton Dedicates New Green on Campus

Oct 25, 2008

The University of Scranton has named the newly created, football-field-sized green at the heart of its campus in honor of Scranton alumni and benefactors John and Jacquelyn Dionne of Westport, Conn. The John & Jacquelyn Dionne Campus Green was formally dedicated at a 4 p.m. ceremony on August 30.

“John and Jacquelyn Dionne exemplify the Jesuit ideal of the magis, the restless desire for excellence grounded in gratitude,” said Rev. Scott R. Pilarz, S.J., president of The University of Scranton. “Successful in their careers and blessed in their personal lives, they have generously given of their time, expertise, friendship and support to help the University realize our dreams. Personally, and on behalf of the University, I am pleased to name this campus green in their honor as an acknowledgement of the sustained friendship, service and care that they have so enthusiastically given to the University from which they graduated and where they met.”

The new 22,000 square-foot campus green transforms the campus and serves as a spectacular campus gateway to the Patrick & Margaret DeNaples Center.

“John and Jackie, you have created on this green a very special place for Christ to play at the University. This is holy ground,” said Fr. Pilarz at the dedication.

Immediately following the formal dedication, an ice cream social was held for the campus community and students participated in Ultimate Frisbee games.

A native of Scranton and University of Scranton alumna, Jacquelyn (Rasieleski) Dionne became a Registered Nurse upon graduating from Community Medical Center in 1986 and continued her education at The University of Scranton. She earned a bachelor’s of science degree in health administration from Scranton in 1989.

Mrs. Dionne’s thirteen-year career as an intensive care nurse included several certifications earned while at Mount Auburn, a Harvard University teaching hospital, and later the New Hampshire Heart Institute. Today she is active in several charitable organizations, including The National Charity League for Mothers and Daughters, as well as raising their three children, Courtney, Kristen and Jonathan.

A 1986 graduate of The University of Scranton and a former trustee, Mr. Dionne is senior managing director of The Blackstone Group and founder and chief investment officer of Blackstone Distressed Securities Advisors group.

Mr. Dionne served as chair of the University’s Board of Trustees from 2004 to 2007. He currently serves on the executive committee of Scranton’s Pride Passion Promise Campaign, a $100 million capital campaign. Mr. Dionne serves as vice chair of the President’s Business Council and previously served as co-chair of the council’s annual award dinner.

Prior to joining Blackstone in 2005, Mr. Dionne was for several years, a partner at Bennett Restructuring Funds, a $1 billion hedge fund, where he specialized in public and private investments focused on distressed debt of companies in or near bankruptcy. Prior to that, he was a partner at Saugatuck Capital and director of corporate development for Fisher Scientific International. He began his career at Price Waterhouse as a public accountant.

Mr. Dionne earned an MBA from the Harvard Business School. He has served on the board of directors of several private companies and non-for-profit organizations. He is a Certified Public Accountant and a CFA Charterholder.

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