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Mario Gabelli (Photo by Lee Pellegrini)

Gabelli $3 Million Gift Endows CSOM Professorship

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By Jack Dunn | Director of News Public Affairs
Published: Sept. 23, 2010
Boston College Trustee Mario J. Gabelli, chairman and CEO of Gamco Investors and one of Wall Street’s most successful and best-known money managers, has established an endowed professorship in finance in the Carroll School of Management through a $3 million gift. 

BC Finance Professor Alan Marcus, whose teaching and research in investments and the fundamental analysis of portfolio management has earned distinction in academe, has been named the first holder of the Mario J. Gabelli Endowed Professorship.

Gabelli, a longtime BC benefactor who founded the University’s Wall Street Council and endowed the Gabelli Distinguished Scholars Fund within Boston College’s Presidential Scholars Program, said he funded the professorship to ensure that future generations of BC business students will continue to receive the best possible education.

“My wife Regina and I believe that a fundamental underpinning of our democratic system is meritocracy, and that America’s global competitive advantage is maintained through education,” said Gabelli.  “For a great university to help accomplish that goal, it has to have excellent facilities, students and faculty.  Having previously funded a residence hall and a distinguished scholars fund for students, this endowed professorship will provide the third pillar of my commitment to BC in these important areas.”

Marcus said he was honored to be named the first recipient of the Gabelli Professorship, which bears the name of an individual who has distinguished himself both for his investment acumen and his numerous charitable commitments. 

“Mario Gabelli is one of the all-time most successful investors, whose investment philosophy — based on a serious and detailed consideration of the fundamental factors that affect a firm’s long-term success — is consistent with what we teach as best practice,” said Marcus.  “While I would be honored to be selected for any chaired professorship at BC, I am particularly honored to have been chosen for the Gabelli Professorship.”

Added Carroll School Dean Andrew Boynton, “The Gabelli Professorship carries with it the outstanding reputation of Mario Gabelli, renowned for being a leading innovator in the world of equity investment.  It is appropriate that this professorship will further accelerate the strengthening of the Carroll School’s Finance Department faculty as one of the very best in the country.”

A 1965 summa cum laude graduate of Fordham University and the father of four BC graduates, Gabelli’s association with Boston College began in the early 1980s when he took an active role in BC’s then fledgling endowment. In 1995 Gabelli Hall, a student residence along Commonwealth Avenue, was named in recognition of Gabelli’s support of Boston College.  He joined the Board of Trustees in 2003 and is now in his second four-year term.

Gabelli also serves as an overseer of Columbia Graduate School of Business and a trustee at Roger Williams University in Rhode Island, which named its business school after him.  In addition, he has served as director of the Winston Churchill Foundation, E.L. Wiegand Foundation, National Italian American Foundation and American-Italian Cancer Foundation, among other organizations.

Gabelli began his career in finance in the research department of Loeb Rhodes, following his graduation from Columbia’s MBA program.  He later worked at the research firm William D. Witter until founding his own firm, Gabelli Asset Management, in 1977. Now known as Gamco, his firm handles $30 billion in global investments, and his well-publicized success has helped Gabelli to be named US Equity Manager of the Year by Morningstar in 1997 and to Barron’s All-Century Investment Team in 2000.

Marcus, who earned his PhD in economics from MIT in 1981, began his teaching career at Boston University, and was appointed a professor of finance at BC in 1991. He has also served as a visiting professor at the Athens Laboratory of Business Administration at BU and the Sloan School of Management at MIT. His main research interests are in derivatives and securities markets, with his most recent work focusing on models of asset management.  His teaching interests focus on derivatives markets, risk management and investments.  He is the co-author of three of the leading finance textbooks: Investments, Essentials of Investments, and Fundamentals of Corporate Finance.