Pope Benedict XVI Bestows Papal Honor Upon Brooklyn Native Dr. Frank J. Macchiarola Awarded Honor of Knight Commander of the Holy Order of St. Gregory the Great
Brooklyn, N.Y. – His Excellency, the Most Reverend Nicholas DiMarzio, Bishop of Brooklyn, announced that His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI has bestowed upon Dr. Frank J. Macchiarola the Papal Honor of Knight Commander of the Holy Order of St. Gregory the Great.
The Pontifical Equestrian Order of St. Gregory the Great was established on September 1, 1831, by Pope Gregory XVI; it is one of five pontifical orders of knighthood in the Catholic Church. The order is bestowed on Catholic men and women – in rare cases, non-Catholic men may be honored – in recognition of their service to the Church.
Dr. Macchiarola’s interests and expertise span the legal, academic, executive management and public service areas. He joined St. Francis College, his alma mater, as president in July 1996. He served in that role until 2008 when he stepped down to become the Chancellor of St. Francis College. Prior to his service at his alma mater, Dr. Macchiarola served as dean and professor of law at the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law of Yeshiva University (1991-96), where he taught Legal Process, Contracts and Legal Writing. He also served as professor of business in Columbia University’s Graduate School of Business with teaching and research interests in business law, government regulation of business and nonprofit management (1988- 91). He also served as chair of the advisory committee of the Columbia Business School Community Collaboration and served on doctoral panels in political science and education. A faculty member at the City University of New York from 1964-85, he served at City College, Baruch College, and City University Graduate School, leaving as professor of political science on the doctoral faculty. He served as vice president of the City University Graduate School and as director of the Top 40 Program of the CUNY Urban Academy for Management. He has also been a professor of education at Teachers College of Columbia University and has been president of The Academy of Political Science. He has served as counsel to the New York State Assembly Committee on Codes and Special Counsel and director of the Housing Study Group of the Scott Commission.
From 1983-88, Dr. Macchiarola was president and chief executive officer of the New York City Partnership, Inc., a business and civic organization consisting of a board of 120 leaders in New York City dedicated to improving economic and social conditions in the city. The group was responsible for programs in youth employment, housing education and public safety. From 1978-83, he served as chancellor of the New York City Public School System, supervising the educational program of nearly one million students. He was also deputy director of the New York State Emergency Financial Control Board for New York City.In the public service arena, Dr. Macchiarola was appointed in 2003 by Mayor Michael Bloomberg to serve as chair of the New York City Charter Revision Commission. Also appointed by Governor George Pataki to the New York State Commission on Education Reform, he served as chairman of the New York State Higher Education Services Commission. At Mayor Bloomberg’s request, in 2003 Dr. Macchiarola mediated the strike of Local 802 Musicians Union against the League of American Theaters and Producers, which had shut down Broadway. He was also chair of the New York City Districting Commission, which drew City Council District lines for the 1991 election and acted as special referee in the case that drew New York State congressional lines for the 1992 election. He has been a member of President Jimmy Carter’s Impact Aid Commission, New York City Charter Revision Commissions, New York City Campaign Finance Board, New York City Water Board and New York City Tax Study Commission. He has been a member of numerous civic boards including the Academy of Political Science, Manhattan Institute, Brooklyn Children’s Museum, and New York City Police Department Board of Visitors. Since 2004, he has been a member of the American Bar Association Committee on Law School Accreditation and is a consultant to and director of several corporations, and sits on the board of the Manville Personal Injury Settlement Trust, and Jefferies Group Inc. (JEF:NYSE). He has served as special counsel to the New York Law firm of Tannenbaum, Helpern, Syracuse and Hirschtritt, LL.P .
He holds a B.A., 1962, L.H.D., 1981, St. Francis College; LL.B., 1965, Ph.D., 1970, Columbia University; LL.D., 1983, Dominican College; L.H.D., 1983, College of Staten Island of the City University of New York; LL.D., 1983, Manhattan College; LL.D., 1999, Molloy College; L.H.D., 1999, Saint Joseph’s College; L.H.D., 2009, Fordham University.
Regarding the honor, Bishop DiMarzio said, “Dr. Macchiarola is a major figure in the public forum, particularly in New York City, and especially in the education of the millions of children of our city. At the same time, he has been an admirable Catholic and I am delighted that Dr. Macchiarola has been honored by this award.”
Dr. Macchiarola’s installation into the Order will take place during Vespers at St. James Cathedral Basilica, 250 Cathedral Place, Downtown Brooklyn, this Sunday, October 28th at 4 p.m.
Bishop DiMarzio will also confer papal honors with the title “Monsignor” to four priests, a distinction given after decades of service and a written request to the pope from the bishop. Those being bestowed the title include Prelate of Honor upon Msgr. Terrence Mulkerin, diocesan director of the Propagation of the Faith; and Chaplain of His Holiness upon Msgr. Joseph Grimaldi, episcopal vicar for Brooklyn; Msgr. Thomas Machalski, rector of SS. Cyril and Methodius, Orchard Lake, Michigan; and Msgr. Vito Buonanno, director of pilgrimages at the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception, Washington, D.C.