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Syracuse University hires Michael Paulus to lead fundraising for athletic department

By Adam Rombel (arombel@cnybj.com)

Date:

Michael Paulus (Photo credit: navysports.com)

SYRACUSE, N.Y. — Syracuse University Athletics announced it has hired Michael Paulus as senior associate athletics director/executive director of athletic development.

Paulus, the younger brother of Greg Paulus, is a Syracuse–area native who starred as a quarterback at Christian Brothers Academy about 15 years ago.

Paulus brings 10 years of college-sports fundraising experience to his new role with Syracuse’s Orange Club. He comes to Syracuse after serving in the same role at the U.S. Naval Academy since 2018. As a member of the athletic director’s executive staff, he partnered with the Naval Academy Foundation and Athletic & Scholarship Programs division to lead fundraising efforts supporting Navy athletics. In three years at Navy, the development team achieved record levels of annual and major gift support, most notably increasing unrestricted giving by 35 percent and also surpassing $110 million raised for athletics as part of the Academy’s “Called to Serve, Daring to Lead” campaign, according to a Syracuse University news release. The $110 million exceeded the original campaign goal of $70 million set for athletics and resulted in numerous capital renovations and improvements to facilities benefiting Navy Athletics. Paulus was also a sport supervisor for four varsity programs at Navy.

“Michael’s positive leadership, experience with athletics fundraising and directing an effective fundraising team, and his passion for Syracuse University Athletics, stand out,” John Wildhack, Syracuse director of athletics, said. “The addition of Michael to our athletics department staff will add more capacity to the athletics advancement team and help make a good team even better.”

Prior to his time at Navy, Paulus was the assistant athletics director for development at the Ole Miss Athletics Foundation from 2015 to 2018. In that capacity, he was a lead fundraiser for Ole Miss Athletics and the “Forward Together” campaign, a $200 million capital initiative that resulted in a new basketball arena, expansion to the football stadium, and renovations and improvements benefiting all Olympic sports facilities.

Paulus began his career in athletics development at Mount St. Mary’s University (2013-15) and Virginia Commonwealth University (2012-13).

A graduate of the College of William & Mary, Paulus played quarterback for the Tribe in 2010 and 2011 after playing the same position at the University of North Carolina for three years. He earned his master’s degree in education in sport leadership from Virginia Commonwealth University, an MBA from Mount St. Mary’s, and a Ph.D. in higher-education administration at Ole Miss.

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