In the late sixties, Gabriel A. Battista was a man armed with a master’s degree in engineering. He was employed by GE, but neither his position nor any of the opportunities before him at the time interested him in expanding his deep technical knowledge. So, he took a step back and decided he was going to create a different path to discover new opportunities. Born and raised in Philadelphia, Temple University just felt right. He connected with the curriculum and the culture at the school. His learning and his career took on a new dimension after he matriculated to Temple after earning an MSEE that was funded by GE based on his performance at that company. In addition, GE had provided the opportunity to become familiar with international business management as well as the experience of working with other cultures—particularly in Europe. Mr. Battista then spent the better part of 25 years in the technology industry at a pace rivaled only by the accelerating progression of technology that the industry experienced during this time. The most memorable experience during this time unfolded in 1997 when he became the CEO of Network Solutions, the nation’s first commercial domain addressing company. “Part of the reason it was such an achievement for me was that only 10 years earlier I could not have imagined myself doing such a thing. Ten years earlier no one even knew what a website was or even how the Internet would become such an integral part of our lives.” At 60, Mr. Battista left corporate America and turned his attention to philanthropy. Over the years he has been focused on two areas—Italian American culture (his parents were Italian immigrants) and education. “Temple has been a mainstay in my life. It’s a point of outstanding education and cultural exchange. I credit Temple for providing such an excellent foundation for all I have accomplished and will continue to accomplish in the future.”
Temple University Degree
Master of Business Administration ’72, Fox School of Business
Title & Company
- Member, Network Alliance Board of Directors
- Member, NeuLion, Inc. Board of Directors
- Chairman, Board of Trustees, The American University of Rome
- Chairman, The National Italian American Foundation
Temple University Awards & Affiliatons
Chairman, Advisory Board for the Center of International Business Education and Research (CIBER)
What I wanted to be when I was 20 years old
I had no vision of ever becoming a CEO or Chairman of a company. I had no awareness or experience regarding what it would take to be a leader of a large corporation. So, my ambition was simple. I wanted to do engaging work that would afford me the opportunity to advance. Do a good job. Get noticed. Advance.
Best piece of advice anyone ever gave me
A high-level person at GE told me that one of three things will happen in business: You’ll arrive at a job prematurely, right on time or too late in your career development. If you arrive too soon, you have a high probability of failing. I was always prepared to make my next move. I made sure I had the skillset and that I knew the industry, so I felt confident in taking that next step.