by Tom Luicci
PISCATAWAY, N.J. (May 7, 2014) – Rutgers is calling back two more of its own as the school continues to gear up for official entry into the Big Ten on July 1.
Former All-America tight end Marco Battaglia and Andy Sisti, Class of 1976, have each been named to the position of Director of Development/Major Gifts, athletic director Julie Hermann announced today. They will join the staff of Sarah Baumgartner, Senior Associate Athletic Director and Chief Development Officer.
“When I took the position at Rutgers to lead our development team, there were two things most important to me – first, to keep our very talented developmental staff in place, and second, to recruit the very best talent that was the right fit for Rutgers,” Baumgartner said. “Andy Sisti and Marco Battaglia both exude passion, talent and the ability to build meaningful, impactful relationships with the Rutgers faithful.
“Their long-time love for their University and their unrelenting desire for Rutgers to achieve great success in the Big Ten will undoubtedly help us.”
Battaglia, a four-year Rutgers football letter winner from 1992-95, earned consensus first-team All-America honors as a senior, when he caught 69 passes for 894 yards and 10 touchdowns. He is No. 6 all time on the school’s career receiving yardage list (2,221), No. 5 all time in career receptions (171) and is tied for No. 5 in career touchdown catches with 16.
Originally from Howard Beach, N.Y., Battaglia was a second-round draft pick by the Cincinnati Bengals in 1996. He played for six teams during a nine-year NFL career that ended in 2005.
“I am overjoyed to be joining the development team at Rutgers,” Battaglia said. “I intend to exhibit the same level of hard work and enthusiasm that helped make me successful as a player at Rutgers. I have developed many valuable relationships due to my affiliation with Rutgers and am honored to be called on to assist in the ongoing success of the school.
“I hope to be an asset to the team and I look forward to a long and productive tenure with the University.”
Battaglia owned a plastic recycling business in the New York Metropolitan Area from 2006-2012 and has spent the past two years in the real estate business.
He currently resides in Middle Village, N.Y.
Sisti graduated Rutgers in 1976 with a B.A. in Business Administration and Accounting and also holds a Master’s degree in Marketing from Monmouth University. He earned a mini-MBA in Social Media Marketing from Rutgers as well.
"Since graduating in 1976, I have seen a lot of changes at Rutgers,” Sisti said “It seems that many times people tend to dwell on the negative instead of concentrating on all the good that our great university represents. I want to be part of the positive influence. We are now Big Ten. This is significant both academically and athletically.
“I am honored to be part of development team that is responsible for making alumni, sponsors and supporters feel closer to the Rutgers family while being charged with securing the resources to provide the tools for our fine student-athletes to grow as individuals, students and athletes. We all need to be thinking now about what we can do to help make our great university even greater."
Originally from Spring Lake, Sisti has served as general manager for Point Pleasant Distributors in Allenwood, N.J. from 1991 until this year, having been with the company since 1974. He has been Vice Chairman/Board of Directors at Manasquan Savings Bank in Wall, N.J. since 2005 and was a member of Rutgers University President’s Council Executive Committee for two years.
Sisti currently resides in Allenwood.