Fordham Lincoln Center Vice President Frank Simio Retires

Simio worked at Fordham for 23 years and helped the university navigate multiple construction projects, including the recent renovation of the McMahon RamFit Center



Valera will assume Simio’s role as vice president for Lincoln Center effective June 30.

In an email sent to the Fordham community on Feb. 17, University President Tania Tetlow, J.D., announced that Frank Simio, vice president for Lincoln Center, is retiring, effective June 30. According to the email, the position will be dissolved and Marco Valera, vice president for administration and COVID-19 coordinator, will assume Simio’s responsibilities.

Per the university’s description of Simio’s role, he was responsible for communicating with deans and student affairs professionals to help serve “the needs of Lincoln Center students as effectively as possible.” 

Simio has held a multitude of positions since initially arriving at Fordham in 2000. He was appointed to his current position in August 2018, following the retirement of former Vice President for Lincoln Center Brian Byrne. Prior to that, he served as the university’s vice president of finance for 14 years and has transitioned into different university roles since then, including interim senior vice president, chief financial officer and director of special projects in the Office of the President until 2018.

“I always tried to put students first, whether it was when allocating budgets or planning improvements to the Lincoln Center campus,” he said. 

Simio shared that he felt fortunate to be able to return to his alma mater.In 1983, he had graduated from Gabelli with a bachelor’s of science in public accounting before earning his certified public accountant (CPA) license later on. 

In a 2018 interview with The Observer, Simio spoke about the transition between working as the vice president for finance and serving as the vice president for Lincoln Center and what his responsibilities entailed. 

“If you gave me a small handful of words to describe the position, I think it would be, ‘Making sure the campus works for everybody on it,’” he said. “It would include managing meeting spaces, things like that. It’s helping deans maximize the use of their space and resources and, most importantly, it’s planning for the mid- to long-term future of the campus.”

“Frank has been an integral part of the Fordham community,” Tetlow said in the email announcing Simio’s retirement. “As a loyal alum, Fordham parent, and dedicated administrator, he has helped build the University as we know it (literally), with unwavering integrity and hard work.” 

During his time at Fordham, Simio helped develop financing plans for the construction of the Fordham Law School located underneath McKeon Hall as well as the construction of Campbell, Salice and Conley Halls at the Rose Hill campus. He also planned the university’s acquisition of the Lincoln Center campus’ Martino Hall. 

“On behalf of a grateful University, I thank Frank for everything he has done to make Fordham a better place, and wish him all the best (with a little jealousy) as he embarks on this new chapter in his life,” Tetlow said. 

Regarding Simio’s retirement, Valera shared that he wishes Simio “much joy” and noted that he has been a friend, colleague and mentor over the years. He added that he has worked closely with Simio and his team on several facilities initiatives and cited the renovation of the McMahon RamFit Center as their most recent joint project. 

Jenifer Campbell, dean of students at Lincoln Center, echoed this sentiment and described Simio as a “wonderful individual and colleague.”

“He has been a strong supporter of student initiatives and programs,” she said. “He will be sorely missed by colleagues at Fordham and within the Division of Student Affairs.”

Laura Auricchio, dean of Fordham College at Lincoln Center, shared that she feels “truly fortunate” to have had the honor of working with Simio and noted that he has been a supportive friend. 

He has been an unflagging advocate for the Lincoln Center campus and an invaluable source of wisdom and guidance about all things Fordham,” she said. 

Auricchio added that Simio had introduced her to an Italian restaurant on Ninth Avenue, Masseria dei Vini, and hopes that he will “still be willing to join me for lunch there every now and again!”

According to the email, Valera will divide his time between Fordham’s campuses once he assumes Simio’s duties as vice president for Lincoln Center. Valera shared that he is “humbled to be asked to take on the duties of the VP for Lincoln Center” and looks forward to working closely with the deans and departments at the university’s Lincoln Center campus. 

“Please join me in wishing a happy retirement to Frank. He is not a big fan of public praise, but there are moments when we need to celebrate the achievements of our people, so he will have to bear it,” Tetlow said.  

Simio shared that his plans for retirement are not yet finalized but that his future endeavors will likely include “a combination of volunteering, traveling and enjoying time with family and friends.”