New SLU president gets to work

ST. LOUIS (AP) - Taking over a Catholic university as its first leader to not wear the clerical collar is a familiar challenge to Fred Pestello, the new president of Saint Louis University.

The Cleveland, Ohio, native comes to the 196-year-old Jesuit school after six years as the first secular boss at Le Moyne College, a smaller Jesuit campus in upstate New York. He previously spent nearly 25 years as a sociology professor and administrator at the University of Dayton, another Catholic college.

RELATED: Fred Pestello named new SLU president

The 62-year-old Pestello succeeds the Rev. Lawrence Biondi, who presided over a wave of campus expansion and enrollment growth but whose forceful personality and brusque management style also alienated some faculty and students. Biondi remains at the university in an undetermined role.

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