CUNY appoints two top-level positions



Ariana Purisic

The CUNY Board of Trustees recently approved the appointments of Wendy Hensel and James Gallo. Hensel was selected to serve as the next executive vice chancellor and university provost and Gallo will serve as the next vice chancellor of university advancement.

Hensel’s appointment is effective on June 1 and Gallo’s is effective on April 1.

“We proudly welcome these two accomplished leaders who bring a wealth of experience in public higher education to our senior leadership team,” CUNY Chancellor Felix Matos Rodriguez said in an email announcement on Feb. 23.

Hensel has held various academic leadership positions over a decade at Georgia State University. She has served as dean, then provost and senior vice president of its College of Law academic affairs.

While serving as its chief academic officer, Hansel created the Office of the Associate Provost for Online Strategies to increase the number of fully online programs by 45% during the COVID-19 pandemic. She worked alongside GSU’s two-year campus leaders to remedy the decline in vulnerable students’ enrollment amid the pandemic.

Hensel established its Task Force on Racial Equality, which led to Georgia State’s first High Education Excellence in Diversity award.

Since January, Hensel has been the senior advisor to the president for strategic initiatives at GSU.

Hensel is a cum laude graduate at Harvard Law School and holds a bachelor’s in public affairs with the highest honors at Michigan State University.

“It is both exciting and humbling to join the nation’s leading urban public university, with its incredible trajectory of achievement and impact,” Hensel said. “I look forward to working across the campuses with faculty, staff, students and supporters to advance CUNY’s mission and strategic priorities for the benefit of all in this great city and state.”

As vice chancellor of university advancement, Gallo will be responsible for fundraising efforts for CUNY.

He has served as the assistant vice chancellor for professional schools development at the University of California Los Angeles since 2016. In addition, he has successfully raised more than $1 billion.

Gallo’s career has spanned 16 years of fundraising efforts at other schools such as Cornell University, the University of Chicago and Dartmouth College.

At Cornell, he coordinated fundraisers to triple philanthropic gifts and advancements in six years. Additionally, he amassed more than 150 individual visits by major donors during his four years at UChicago.

Gallo also served as a developmental officer at Dartmouth, where he received his bachelor’s degree in psychology.

“I’m honored to join one of the nation’s great engines for social and economic mobility,” Gallo said. “I look forward to partnering with Chancellor Matos Rodríguez, the CUNY community and their invaluable volunteers, raising critical philanthropic resources ensuring that CUNY continues to be a beacon for all New Yorkers.”