Dr. Christopher Puto
Dr. Christopher Puto, the 37th president of Spring Hill College, began his post on campus June 1, 2015. Dr. Puto graduated from Spring Hill College in 1964 with a degree in economics. He earned an MBA in marketing from the University of Miami and a Ph.D. in business administration with a concentration in marketing from Duke University. Dr. Puto was a member of the Spring Hill College Board of Trustees from 2003 to 2012.
From 2002 to 2014, Dr. Puto served as the dean and the Opus Distinguished Chair in the Opus College of Business at the University of St. Thomas, a Catholic, liberal arts university in St. Paul, Minn. Among his accomplishments at St. Thomas, Dr. Puto designed and introduced the university’s first full-time MBA program and first full-time M.S. in Accountancy program, as well as redesigned the flagship evening MBA program. Under Dr. Puto’s leadership, the University of St. Thomas received accreditation from AACSB International.
Prior to his work at St. Thomas, Dr. Puto served as professor of marketing and dean of the McDonough School of Business at Georgetown University, the country’s oldest Catholic and Jesuit university located in Washington, D.C. During his tenure at Georgetown, the McDonough School rose to #22 in the U.S. News and World Report national rankings.
Dr. Puto’s accomplishments at Georgetown’s McDonough School include introducing a new MBA program curriculum and initiating a curriculum redesign for the undergraduate business program. He later created a comprehensive strategic planning process for the school and raised $80 million in the first three years of a $150 million capital campaign.
Dr. Puto has also served as associate dean and director of the MBA program, director of doctoral studies in marketing, and professor of marketing and psychology at the University of Arizona, a public research university in Tucson. His teaching experience includes serving on the faculty at the University of Michigan and Appalachian State University.
In addition to his accomplishments in academia, Dr. Puto has a wide range of industry and consulting experience. Clients have included Bank of America, Eastman Kodak Company, and General Electric Company. Dr. Puto started his career as allied sales manager at Burger King Corporation, where he contributed to developing the strategic foundations for the “Have It Your Way” advertising campaign.
He has also written numerous academic journal articles and book chapters and presented at peer-reviewed professional conferences. He received the 2002 Sheth Foundation Award for co-authoring the “Journal of Consumer Research” article having the most long-term impact on the discipline. This inaugural award covered the first 29 years of the Journal’s history. His chapter, “The Marketing and Business of Higher Education” for the book, “Restoring Trust in Higher Education,” was recently published by Praeger.
Dr. Puto succeeded the Rev. Gregory F. Lucey, S.J., who continues to serve the College in a senior administrative role focusing on mission and identity.
Dr. Puto was interviewed for May 2017 Connections: Marketing the Mission of Jesuit Education on the Association of Jesuit Colleges and Universities website about his years of professional experience in higher education marketing.
He is also featured in the Chronicle of Higher Education discussing the Spring Hill College strategic plan.