Fairfield University names three alumni to Board of Trustees


Fairfield University appointed three distinguished alumni to the institution's Board of Trustees at its annual meeting on Oct. 7. The new board members are Katherine N. Lapp, class of 1978, and executive vice president for Harvard University; Andrew J. McMahon, class of 1989, and senior executive vice president for AXA Equitable Life Insurance Company and president of its financial protection and wealth management business; and Sheila K. Davidson, class of 1983, and executive vice president in charge of law and corporate administration for New York Life.

Katherine LappKatherine N. Lapp '78 of Cambridge, Mass., joined Harvard University's Office of the President and Provost as executive vice president in October 2009. As executive vice president, Lapp serves as the chief administrative officer for the University and a member of the president's senior management team.

Prior to her appointment at Harvard, Lapp served as executive vice president for business operations for the University of California. She also served as executive director and chief executive officer for the New York Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) for five years until 2006, where she was responsible for the operations, finances and long-term business strategies of North America's largest regional transportation network. Before joining the MTA, Lapp had a distinguished legal career, serving as New York State Director of Criminal Justice and Commissioner of the Criminal Justice Services Department from 1997-2001; as New York City's Criminal Justice Coordinator from 1994-97; and as chief of staff and special counsel to the New York City Deputy Mayor for Public Safety from 1990-93.

Lapp, who was born in Cedarhurst, N.Y., received a bachelor of arts degree in history from Fairfield University in 1978 and a law degree from Hofstra University in 1981.

Andrew McMahonAndrew J. McMahon '89, P'13 of Westport, Conn., is a senior executive vice president for AXA Equitable Life Insurance Company and president of its financial protection and wealth management business. He is also a member of the company's executive operating committee. McMahon has overall responsibility for life insurance manufacturing, marketing, distribution, business management operations, and in-force management. He is also chairman of AXA Advisors, LLC, the company's broker/dealer and retail distribution channel comprised of approximately 6,000 career-contracted financial professionals.

McMahon joined AXA Equitable in March 2005 as senior vice president to launch the company's Strategic Initiatives Group. Later that year, he was promoted to executive vice president and was named chief operating officer of AXA Advisors. McMahon was named chairman of AXA Advisors in 2007.

Before joining AXA Equitable, he was a principal at McKinsey & Co., and served as a life insurance practice leader in North America. Prior to McKinsey, McMahon spent several years in management positions with various business divisions of General Electric.

McMahon, earned a bachelor of science degree in computer science from Fairfield University in 1989 and a master's degree in business administration from Columbia Business School in 1995. He is married to the former Jennifer Janczewski '89 and they have three children.

Sheila DavidsonSheila K. Davidson '83 joined New York Life 19 years ago after several years with the National Association of Securities Dealers. Following a number of positions within the Office of the General Counsel, she was appointed the company's general counsel in 2000. Currently Davidson serves as Executive Vice President, Chief Legal Officer & General Counsel. She is also a member of the company's executive management committee, which is comprised of New York Life's senior executive leadership and directs the policies and procedures for the company. New York Life Insurance Company, a Fortune 100 company founded in 1845, is the largest mutual life insurance company in the United States and one of the largest life insurers in the world.

Davidson graduated cum laude from Fairfield University with a bachelor of arts degree in political science. She also received her juris doctor degree from George Washington University in 1986. Davidson and her husband, Anthony, reside in New York City with their two sons.

The Board of Trustees of Fairfield University is a group of individuals empowered to act as a body to make policy decisions and to govern the affairs of the institution. The Board of Trustees is composed of members who are nominated because of their stature and influence in their community and their respective expertise. While Board members are not involved in the day-to-day operation of the university, they are responsible for seeing that the beliefs and mission of the university and its goals and objectives are carried out in the operations of the institution.

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Media Contact: Mark Gregorio, (203) 254-4000, ext. 2647, mgregorio1@fairfield.edu

Posted on November 2, 2010

Vol. 43, No. 99