Salvatore F. Sodano, former head of the American Stock Exchange (Amex) and vice chairman of the National Association of Securities Dealers (NASD), who is credited with helping the exchange recover from the tragic events of September 11, 2001, has been named dean of Hofstra’s Frank G. Zarb School of Business.
Mr. Sodano, an active Hofstra alumnus, executive-in-residence at the school and a former chair of the University’s Board of Trustees, was selected by President Stuart Rabinowitz following a competitive national search by a committee that included trustees, faculty and administrators.
“We are delighted to have someone of Salvatore Sodano’s stature as dean of our Zarb School of Business,” said President Rabinowitz. “His leadership in running the American Stock Exchange, his role at the NASD, his organizational and administrative abilities that helped him guide the exchange out of the chaos that followed the 9/11 attacks, his integrity and his familiarity with the school make him an ideal choice.”
Frank G. Zarb, former U.S. “energy czar”, for whom the Zarb School of Business is named, said, “Salvatore Sodano is a terrific choice for dean. He’s the type of leader who can take the School of Business to a new level of excellence by increasing the connections between the school and the business community, both in New York and around the world.” Mr. Sodano served as an executive officer and vice chairman of NASD while Mr. Zarb was chairman and CEO of the organization.
Mr. Sodano earned a B.B.A. in accounting with a minor in economics and an M.B.A. in banking and finance from Hofstra University.
He began his career as a staff accountant at Price Waterhouse & Co. and held increasingly responsible positions with Morgan Guaranty, Banker’s Trust and Westpac Banking Corp. before being named to various executive-level roles, including vice chairman of NASD. In 1999, while serving a chief operating officer and chief financial officer of NASD, Mr. Sodano was asked to also assume the position of acting president of the Amex, directing the integration of certain elements of the exchange into the NASD and the NASD’s Nasdaq Stock Market and, most importantly, filling the serious leadership void that existed at the Amex.
He directed the complete overhaul of the Amex infrastructure, developing new products, rebranding the 100-plus-year-old institution and establishing new relationships with key constituencies, including, amongst others, Amex employees and seat holders, trading floor firms, Wall Street brokerage and investment banking firms, and CEOs/CFOs of listed companies. Six months later he was elected Amex chairman and chief executive officer.
The attacks of September 11, 2001, damaged the Amex headquarters and trading operations and took the lives of several exchange members. Within six days, Mr. Sodano had directed the relocation of all Amex businesses and employees to alternative locations and reopened the exchange for business. He personally oversaw the full return to operations of the Amex’s damaged facility, and on October 1 the exchange returned to its home in the restricted Ground Zero area.
Mr. Sodano was named 2001 Man of the Year by the Amex 5&20 Club, an Amex membership group, marking the first time in Amex history that a non-member received that distinction.
He also received the 100 Black Men Investors Club 2002 Performance Award for his “leadership, courage, kindness and unselfish character to enhance diversity in the face of adversity.”
Hofstra has recognized Mr. Sodano with the 2000 Alumni Achievement Award, and Beta Alpha Psi, an international honorary organization, selected him as the recipient of its 2002 Outstanding Alumnus Award. He joined the Hofstra Board of Trustees in 2001 and served the maximum three-year term as chair through October 2005. He is also a member of the advisory board of Hofstra’s Merrill Lynch Center for the Study of International Financial Services and Markets.
The Zarb School of Business consists of five academic departments: Accounting, Taxation and Legal Studies in Business; Business Computer Information Systems and Quantitative Methods; Finance; Management, Entrepreneurship, and General Business; and Marketing and International Business. The Zarb School at Hofstra University is one of only a few institutions in the New York metropolitan area to have AACSB International accreditations in both business and accounting.