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President's Leadership Team

  • Doug Oathout

    Doug Oathout

    Chief of Staff and Director of Marketing and Communications

    Doug Oathout serves as Gannon’s chief of staff, working closely with the president to execute university initiatives. He also provides strategic leadership and vision for the university's internal and external marketing and communications strategies, including media, public relations, crisis communication, promotion and advertising. He was integral in managing Gannon’s COVID-19 response for which he received the 2021 Academic Safety Award from the university. He works closely with Enrollment and Advancement to move recruitment and fundraising to new levels, efforts that led the university to record enrollment in fall of 2021 and spring of 2022. A native of central New York, Oathout joined Gannon after 24 years at the Erie Times-News, where he held a wide range of jobs -- advancing from reporter to executive editor. During his tenure, the newspaper received many awards, including being named the Pennsylvania Newspaper of the Year in 2013. He also received an Associated Press award and a Best of GateHouse honor for community engagement for his Bike Erie 2018 project, in which he bicycled each city street as a newsroom outreach initiative. Oathout earned a bachelor’s degree in political science from the University at Buffalo in 1988. He lives in Harborcreek with his wife, Kathleen. They have six grandchildren.

    Sarah Ewing Ph.D.

    Sarah Ewing, Ph.D.

    Provost and Vice President of Student Experience

    Dr. Sarah Ewing is responsible for all undergraduate and graduate academic matters; student academic support services; program development, delivery and assessment. In this role she works with both academic and student experience division leaders to integrate curriculum and co-curriculum initiatives as well as the assessment and strategic planning for both divisions, including the liberal studies core; faculty development programs; student development and engagement, residence life and dining, athletics, health and wellness, and student support. Dr. Ewing is a first-generation student who funded her own college education, earning a bachelor's degree in biology from Penn State Behrend in 2001 as a University Schreyer Scholar and Excellence in Biology Award recipient. She completed the Ph.D. track of North Carolina State University’s comparative biomedical sciences program in 2007, after which she returned to Erie as a biology professor at Penn State Behrend in 2007. Ewing transitioned to Gannon in 2009 as an assistant professor of biology and director of pre-health professional programs. She advanced to chair of the biology department in 2013, associate professor in 2015, associate dean in July 2015, and interim dean in 2017. In December of 2017, Ewing became permanent dean and has achieved tremendous success at the college, establishing herself as a leader with vision and drive.  

    Jennifer Lundy

    Jennifer Lundy

    Vice President for Finance and Campus Operations

    Jennifer Lundy is responsible for managing Gannon’s financial and human resources to facilitate and support Gannon’s strategic plan. She leads a team of directors and managers who are responsible for fiscal and divisional planning and the daily operations of finance, safety and security, human resources, internal audit, insurance and physical plant. She serves as the administration’s liaison to various committees of Gannon’s Board of Trustees as well as community and civic organizations. She came to Gannon after serving as the vice president for finance and administration and chief financial officer at Seton Hill University in Greensburg, Pa. Prior to that role, she worked at Chatham University in Pittsburgh for 11 years, rising to associate vice president for finance and administration and chief financial officer. During her tenure at Seton Hill, Lundy is credited with providing strategic direction for the university in the areas of finance, accounting, facilities, public safety, as well as campus construction and renovation projects. Lundy additionally supervised endowments and budgets of more than $50 million each and served as a liaison to the Board of Trustees for the investment sub-committee, finance committee, and buildings and grounds committee. Lundy earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration from the University of Pittsburgh, an MBA from Chatham University, and is currently pursuing a doctoral degree in leadership and learning in organizations from Vanderbilt University. Lundy is the proud parent of daughter Julia, a business analytics manager and vice president at PNC Bank living in Pittsburgh.

    Bill Edmondson - 300x450

    William Edmondson

    Vice President for Enrollment 

    Bill Edmondson serves as Gannon’s chief enrollment officer. He is responsible for undergraduate, graduate and global admissions, financial aid and global student service. During his time at Gannon, he has helped increase overall enrollment by 19 percent and global student enrollment by 240 percent. He completely restructured the undergraduate scholarship and need-based aid leveraging plan and implemented various tools to support data-driven decision making. He played an integral part in the inception of Gannon’s English as a Second Language program, which guides students in their cultural adjustment to the United States. Prior to his role at Gannon, Edmondson worked as a consultant at Applied Policy Research for five years, where he worked to optimize net tuition revenue for colleges and universities across the U.S. He previously held several roles at the Cleveland Institute of Art from 1994 to 2005, starting as the director of financial aid. He advanced to assistant vice president for enrollment management and student ombudsmen in 1996, and then to vice president for enrollment and student affairs in 2000. Edmondson earned a bachelor’s degree in aerospace management from Kent State University in 1989, going on to complete a Master of Public Administration in 1992. Bill is married to Lori Edmondson, with whom he has two adult children.

    Nancy Bird

    Nancy Bird

    Vice President for University Advancement

    Nancy Bird is responsible for leading and managing University Advancement in evaluating, planning, designing, and developing advancement and fundraising-related initiatives to support the university’s strategic goals, mission and Catholic tradition. She has a leadership role in developing a culture that engages our alumni community to the highest level to meet the university’s key objectives and promotes the transformative Gannon experience for our students and employees. Bird previously worked at Gannon from July 2014 to June 2019 – first as director of alumni services and then as director of alumni engagement. She returned to Gannon in November 2022 after serving as the director of alumni development at Penn State for three years at the University Park campus, where she managed development functions for the largest dues-paying alumni organization in the world with 174,000 members. She brings additional constituent relations, advancement, and special events experience from Cathedral Prep and Villa Maria Academy in roles prior to those with Gannon and Penn State. Nancy was born and raised in Erie, and currently lives in her hometown with her husband, Fred. She has three adult children who she enjoys visiting in San Francisco, Santa Fe and Pittsburgh. When Nancy is not at Gannon or visiting her family, she can most likely be found at Presque Isle, at a local restaurant with friends, or planning a party. 

    Val Bacik

    Val Bacik

    Chief Institutional Planning Officer

    Val Bacik provides leadership and management in the areas of strategic planning, institutional research and institutional effectiveness. She co-chairs the institutional planning and budget committee and serves as the accreditation liaison officer to the Middle States Commission on Higher Education. Bacik earned a Bachelor of Science from Gannon and a Master of Business Administration from Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, N.C. Before Gannon, Bacik was an admissions counselor at Villa Maria College and a survey statistician for the Census Bureau in Washington, D.C. Bacik’s journey with Gannon started in 1993 as the institutional research coordinator. She would go on to serve as the academic advising center director from 1998 to 2006, associate provost from 2006 to 2011, director of planning and strategic initiatives from 2012 to 2018, and vice president for planning and finance from 2018 to 2022. She is the current treasurer at Catholic Charities, Inc., and has been involved in multiple Alternative Break Service and TRAVEL trips. In her spare time, she enjoys running, reading, jigsaw puzzles and any activities or events that are outdoors. 

    Mark Jordano

    Mark Jordano

    Chief Information Officer

    Mark Jordano serves as Gannon’s chief information officer and is responsible for developing and implementing information technology strategies that meet the university’s goals, delivering return on investment, and maintaining utmost security at both Erie and Ruskin campuses. He is the spearhead of a multi-year digital transformation initiative designed to modernize campus technology to promote innovation, efficiency and new ways of doing business. Jordano previously worked at Gannon from 1994 to 1999 as manager of administrative applications. He returned to Gannon as director of information technology services in January 2000 after serving as a systems development manager at RentWay Inc. in Erie. In July 2016, Jordano became the associate vice president of information technology services until February 2022. During this time, he was the principal author of the 2000 IT Strategic Plan, 2002 IT Strategic Vision, the Technology section of the 2002 Gannon University Strategic Plan and the 2011-2012 IT Tactical Plan. He was also involved in the most recent IT Strategic plan in which digital transformation, process improvement and enhanced security were the key themes. Jordano earned a bachelor’s degree in computer science from Gannon in 1986 and a Master of Business Administration with a concentration in management information systems in 1994. He has been happily married to Sandy Ruscitto for 35 years with whom he shares three children: Samantha, Alexa and Gino. In his spare time, he enjoys golf, bowling and tournament poker.  

    Rev. Michael Kesicki

    Rev. Michael Kesicki

    University Chaplin

    A reliable and steady member of the faculty and leadership of Gannon, Father Michael Kesicki’s skills span inspirational leadership, spiritual guidance, and planning and executing Catholic worship experiences. He is responsible for the pastoral care of students and employees, and weekday and Sunday Mass on campus during the academic year. He serves as the overseer of the Mary, Seat of Wisdom Chapel, supervisor for Campus Ministry and adviser to the president for the university mission. He has been a faculty instructor in theology, philosophy and foreign languages since 1997, as well as a priest for the Diocese of Erie since 1988. Prior to his role as university chaplain, Father Kesicki was a rector at St. Mark Seminary, Diocese of Erie starting in 2000. In 2012, he took on the additional role of associate vice president for mission and ministry at Gannon. He would hold both of these positions until June 2022. Father Kesicki earned a bachelor’s degree in mathematics from Gannon in 1983 and went on to receive a Master of Divinity in theology from St. Mary’s Seminary and the University in Baltimore, Md.