Educating a diverse population in the liberal arts

For personal, professional and global responsibility

In the tradition of the Sisters of Notre Dame

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The Notre Dame College Board of Trustees announces that J. Michael Pressimone, Ed.D., has assumed the presidency of the College effective April 8, 2020. Pressimone is the fifteenth president of the College that was founded in 1922.

Pressimone served as the president of Fontbonne University in St. Louis, Mo., since 2014. Long-time Notre Dame College faculty and administrative leader John Galovic, Ed.D., has served as Interim President of Notre Dame College since May 2019.

Board of Trustees Chair Ann Hawkins, Esq., said in making the announcement, “On behalf of the entire Notre Dame College community, I welcome Mike Pressimone and thank John Galovic for his service during these challenging times. Dr. Galovic, who faithfully and admirably served as Interim President, will assume the role of Liaison to the President and work directly with Dr. Pressimone and others to ensure a smooth transition.”

“During these trying times, we are happy to have two experienced leaders working with campus staff and faculty to navigate these troubled waters. I and my fellow board members have great confidence in college leadership.”

Pressimone is a native of Baltimore, Md., and was a first-generation college student, as are about 40 percent of Notre Dame College students. He holds an Associate of Arts degree from Catonsville Community College (now known as the Community College of Baltimore County), a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the Catholic University of America (Washington, D.C.), a Master of Arts in Leadership in Higher Education from Regis University (Denver, Colo.) and a doctorate in Higher Education and Organizational Change from Benedictine University (Lisle, Ill.). In 2018, he received the Benedictine University Alumni Achievement Visionary Award.

Pressimone’s higher education career spans more than three decades. He served as vice president of advancement at Alvernia University in Reading, Pa.; at Belmont Abbey College in Belmont, N.C.; and at Elizabethtown College in Elizabethtown, Pa. With an extensive background and experience in fundraising, he successfully led the largest comprehensive campaign at Alvernia, surpassing $31 million. In that role, he also oversaw the offices of development, alumni relations and marketing and communications. In a similar role at Elizabethtown College, he designed, implemented and managed an endowment campaign with an initial goal of $20 million that raised more than $26 million.

Pressimone said, “In the weeks since my appointment was announced, I have worked closely with interim President Galovic and many others at Notre Dame to prepare for this exciting new opportunity.  I look forward to working with this dedicated, mission-driven group of women and men to serve the needs of our diverse student population.”

Pressimone is a strong relationship builder with a reputation for teamwork, collaboration and an ability and passion for bringing students, faculty, staff and the community together to achieve mutually beneficial goals. He also has been an active voice in issues of diversity and racial justice. He has written in support of greater diversity and inclusion in both the news media and for his campus constituency.

At Fontbonne, he expanded educational access for the underserved through the creation of the Fontbonne Promise program which provides free education to academically able students who lack the ability to pay. Working with faculty and external funders, Fontbonne addressed the crisis of sex and human trafficking through the establishment of the Center Against Human Trafficking and Exploitation. He spearheaded the effort to purchase the former John F. Kennedy Catholic High School in Manchester, Mo., more than doubling the University’s real estate holdings

Pressimone and his wife Cathy have been married for 38 years and have 12 children and six grandchildren with three more on the way.

April 2020

About Notre Dame College

For almost a century, Notre Dame College has educated a diverse population in the liberal arts for personal, professional and global responsibility. Founded by the Sisters of Notre Dame in 1922, the College has grown strategically to keep pace with the rapidly changing needs of students and the dramatic changes in higher education. But it has never lost sight of its emphasis on teaching students not only how to make a good living but also how to live a good life.

Today, the College offers bachelor’s degrees in 30 disciplines plus a variety of master’s degrees, certification programs and continuing and professional development programs for adult learners on campus and online. Notre Dame College offers NCAA Division II intercollegiate athletic programs for men and women and is located in a picturesque residential neighborhood just 25 minutes from the heart of Cleveland. Hallmarks of the Notre Dame experience include stimulating academics, personalized attention of dedicated faculty and staff, and small class sizes.

Notre Dame College is located at 4545 College Road in South Euclid. For further information contact Brian Johnston, chief communications officer, at 216.373.5252 or