We all know she loves a good hat, but how well do you really know Dean Donna Murasko? After successfully serving as Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences for 10 years—plus a recent reappointment for 5 more—we reveal 15 things you never knew about our seasoned leader.
Spouse: Ken Blank, PhD, VP for Health Services, Rowan University
Children: Francesca (age 28) and Kiera (age 24)
Favorite food: Dark chocolate
Favorite thing on TV: Tennis! Particularly the Grand Slams.
Favorite musician: Carly Simon
Favorite movie: “Two for the Road” with Audrey Hepburn and Albert Finney
Favorite thing to do with your family: Lounge at the beach in St. Thomas, our annual Thanksgiving family vacation.
Coolest place the job has taken you? Mongolia!
What did you want to be when you were a kid? A dancer in the chorus line on Broadway. I still love Broadway musicals and would still love to be part of a seniors’ production of “A Chorus Line.”
How did you meet your husband? At a meeting sponsored by the National Cancer Institute for postdoctoral fellows in tumor immunology. It was meant to foster collaboration. I guess it worked: besides our daughters, we’ve had joint publications (including one in Nature), joint grants and joint graduate students.
How do you unwind from the stress of the job? Tennis, machine Pilates (my Drexel student instructor just made me a “Pilates Snob” t-shirt for completing my 100th class!) and knitting/ crocheting. Actually, first—after a stressful day—driving home with the top down on my convertible.
What might people be surprised to know about you? I try to knit or crochet a baby blanket for every new baby born to someone either I, my husband or our daughters are close to. (Right now, that’s almost a dozen/year).
Lifelong goal you have yet to achieve? Seeing in person all four tennis Grand Slams in one calendar year: Australian Open (January), French Open (May), Wimbledon (June/July) and U.S. Open (August/September).
And finally…everyone wants to know: what’s with the hats? As a little girl I needed to wear hats to church. My mother made shopping for hats a fun excursion—ending always with ice cream. A major point of shopping was to match hats to Sunday clothes. With time I’ve accumulated more clothes, so I need more hats.