Brothers and Sisters
Friends and Mentors
Kenneth DiSaia ’87, ’92 MBA
Kenneth DiSaia ’87, ’92 MBA has held a variety of leadership
positions during his 23-year career with JWU. From
1999 to 2002, Ken was the university’s dean of admissions.
Today, as vice president of enrollment management, he leads
annual recruiting efforts for more than 5,000 new students
at all four JWU campuses. He’s a member of DECA Inc.,
and serves on DECA’s National Advisory Board. As Rhode
Island’s Delta Epsilon Chi chairperson, Ken leads collaborative
efforts of six colleges and universities in the state.
Most important ingredient in life
Happiness. Specifically in regards to work ... If you
enjoy and feel good about what you do, it helps you to
meet your full potential, and it certainly contributes to
a more fulfilling personal life.
Favorite quote “Change happens. Anticipate change, monitor change,
adapt to change, enjoy change, and be ready to change
quickly and enjoy it again.” —
Dr. Spencer Johnson, author of
“Who Moved My Cheese?”
Role JWU played in your career The hands-on, career-focused education at
JWU quickly guided me to my career path.
I knew right away that I liked the field of
marketing, and I certainly loved the
Impact of clubs and organizations My involvement in NSO (DECA specifically)
was the key link to my success. Not only did
it lead to my first job with the university, it
remains an important element of my career
Source of career passion I value the positive
impact I can have on
[students’] first steps
into university life
and their future as
successful adults. The
ultimate reward is
to JWU cross
the stage at
Bridget Lavery-Palmieri ’94
Bridget Lavery-Palmieri ’94 is director of marketing
analytics for Macy’s Merchandising Group, using findings
to guide market strategies. With more than 15 years of
experience in store management, product development,
buying and planning with Macy’s, Bloomingdales and the
Federated Merchandising Group, Bridget is also an inspiring
leader. A founding member of Young Executives for Success
(Y.E.S!), Bridget champions the mission of the Dress for
Success Worldwide charity.
What brought you to JWU The unique curriculum of classroom and hands-on
experience. I also loved the city setting, yet
always had a true feeling of “campus.”
Memorable JWU experience The one-and-one-half years I worked
at the downtown bookstore as the
assistant buyer of clothing and
accessories. My opinions were
respected and trusted.
Impact of clubs and
organizations My involvement in NSO, Greek life and retail/
marketing-related clubs helped me build
the skill of networking. One of the keys
to success is who and how many people
Book on your nightstand
“Energy Leadership” by Bruce
Career advice for new alumni
Do not ever pass up an opportunity to
try something new that interests you.
Every step may not take you forward at
that moment, but it
will make you that much more knowledgeable
John M. Broda ’83
John Broda ’83 is the executive vice president of the Armed
Forces Financial Network (AFFN), in Tampa, Fla. John is
responsible for increasing the versatility of more than 352
financial institutions serving the United States Armed Services.
He provides business development and sales leadership to
enhance regional, national and international banking, credit
union and retail merchant relationships. He also serves as the
assistant secretary for the AFFN Board of Directors.
What brought you to JWU
The DECA organization. DECA was an
important component of my high school
education and JWU provided me the
opportunity to continue with this program
at a collegiate level.
Build and protect your
reputation. In your
personal and professional
lives, your reputation will
Honesty, integrity, dedication,
humor, sincerity, compassion, loyalty,
motivation and determination.
Favorite quote “The best way to find yourself is to
lose yourself in service to others.”
— Mohandas Gandhi
I created the Armed Forces Financial
Network Community Support Program
designed to support members of the U.S.
Armed Services and their families. Since
2004 the program has generated over
$1 million in direct support ... for such
items as care, comfort, entertainment,
emergency assistance, financial education
and literacy programs.
Robert Mellwig ’97
Robert Mellwig ’97 is senior vice president of human
resources (a.k.a. “really cool people”) for multibillion-dollar
real estate company, Lowe Enterprises, and its Destination
Hotels & Resorts. He governs all aspects of the organization’s
human resources for both hospitality and non-hospitality
related businesses and their more than 8,000 employees.
Before joining Lowe, Robert was in charge of corporate
staffing at the home office with Starwood Hotels & Resorts,
and worked within the W Group and for Hilton Hotel Corp.
He is an active member of the Society for Human Resources
Most important lesson at JWU Working within and across diverse teams. In a rapidly
shrinking global environment, the ability to interact,
strengthen relationships and leverage ideas across a
broad range of backgrounds, languages and experiences,
Impact of clubs and organizations I was a member of an NSO, Career Ambassador
Program and the men’s volleyball team. The
ability to fully experience many facets of the
college experience, make friendships and build
leadership skills was important to my earlier
career and professional development.
God gave us two ears and one
mouth. Listen twice as much
as you talk.
Future vision I envision an industry that
continues to bifurcate
into two major segments:
brands and independents.
The future will be dictated
by the consumer, and what
type of experience they
seek and are willing to pay
a premium for.
to challenge Reflect on those who do not
have it as good as you do.
Humble yourself. Be appreciative
for what you have.