Honorary Degree Recipients

R.F. “Rick” Shangraw Jr., PhD, MPA — Honorary Doctor of Science

Rick ShangrawRick Shangraw has spent most of his career scaling organizations and improving the quality of organizational outcomes. He is president of Cintana Education; the executive sponsor of its partnerships in Eastern Europe, Central Asia, and India; and oversees Cintana’s professional services teams. He also is a professor of practice in the School of Public Affairs in the Watts College of Public Service and Community Solutions at Arizona State University (ASU).

Prior to Cintana, Shangraw spent 15 years as a senior executive at ASU. From 2016 to 2019, he served as the founding chief executive officer of ASU Enterprise Partners, leading the movement to ensure and evolve higher education through entrepreneurship. He became CEO of the ASU Foundation for a New American University in 2011 and directed its expansion and transformation into ASU Enterprise Partners — reimagining fundraising to create a diversified revenue generation model for ASU.

During his nine-year tenure, ASU Enterprise Partners grew its assets from $500 million to $1.5 billion, spanning five subsidiaries raising resources through philanthropy, real estate, technology transfer, applied research, and spinoff incubation. The organization also generated more than $900 million in new gifts and commitments, earned Charity Navigator’s coveted four-star rating for eight years of his tenure, and received recognition for its commitment to transparency by GuideStar USA.

Shangraw previously served as senior vice president for research and innovation at ASU, establishing the university as one of the fastest-growing research enterprises in the United States. Under his leadership, nearly 5,000 distinct research projects were awarded more than $1.2 billion in funding. Before his tenure at ASU, Shangraw was the founder and CEO of Project Performance Corporation, a Washington, D.C.-based research and technology consulting firm specializing in environmental, energy, and information management challenges. He advised the U.S. Departments of Defense, Transportation, and Energy, as well as Fortune 100 companies.

Shangraw started his career as a tenure-track faculty member at Syracuse University. He has a bachelor’s degree in political science and a certificate in environmental studies from Dickinson College; a master’s degree in public administration from the Maxwell School at Syracuse University; and a doctorate in public administration from the Maxwell School, with a specialization in technology, information policy, and organization design.

Shangraw was born and raised in Baltimore. His late father, Ralph F. Shangraw, was a former department chair and longtime professor of pharmaceutics at the University of Maryland School of Pharmacy. The Ralph F. Shangraw/Noxell Endowed Chair in Industrial Pharmacy and Pharmaceutics was established at the school in 1995 in honor of his retirement.

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