Generations of the Petteruti Family Help Transform Brown
Rob Petteruti's favorite Faunce House story begins like this: "I met my wife, Gordana, in 1980. We were both part of an international relations program and I was asked to pick her up from the airport and find her a place to live. After some procrastination, I dashed into the old Faunce House basement mailroom, scanned the classified board, pulled a slip for a roommate-wanted ad, collected Gordana from the airport, delivered her to her new apartment, and went on my way. She, however, was horrified by my choice and abruptly moved out. She sought out her own new accommodations—coincidentally, settling in an apartment directly across the street from me. And the rest is history."
Ann Marie Petteruti Barone's memories of Faunce House are very vivid: "It was always considered the pulse for student life at Brown, with its iconic architecture and central location. I graduated in '84, but continue, albeit infrequently, to have a recurring dream (nightmare) that I am fighting my way under the arch to discern the location and time for my final exams. However, I can think of no other period during my young adulthood that has had the level of positive impact and enrichment on me than my time at Brown. The University has always been a source of pride and identity for me and my family."
I am very proud that we, as a family, have shared this experience. I look back fondly at my time at Brown and I am grateful that my children have remained faithful to the University. — Alfred J. Petteruti P'81, P'83, P'84, P'86, GP'13, GP'14
Lenore Petteruti also remembers spending time in Faunce House—meeting members of the diverse student body, having intellectually challenging conversations, talking about how to get involved and make the world a better place. These conversations are a direct result of the spirit of independent thinking fostered at Brown.
In fact, Brown and memories of Faunce House have left a lasting imprint on the entire family. Alfred J. Petteruti P'81, P'83, P'84, P'86, GP'13, GP'14 is proud to have shared these experiences with his four children: Robert A. Petteruti '81, P'13, Steven F. Petteruti '83, P'14, Ann Marie Petteruti Barone '84, and Lenore A. Petteruti '86. The family has also shared a commitment to preserve and improve the University for future generations.
Al and Mary Petteruti supported renovations of Faunce House in 1989, naming the Petteruti Lounge on the west side of the first floor. These improvements sought to return the building to the student center that John D. Rockefeller envisioned in 1904. Steps were built to connect Faunce House to the College Green, and new open meeting spaces and lounges replaced outdated and closed-in rooms. Faunce House and the Petteruti Lounge quickly became a place for students and faculty to meet and exchange ideas.
In 2004, Al's children came together to support one more space for inventive collaboration. With the naming of the Petteruti Laboratory for Design and Entrepreneurship in the Barus & Holley engineering and physics building, they honored their entrepreneurial father's 50th reunion. The space provides a place for students to apply learned principles toward creating well-designed and well-developed products.
In 2010, Rob, Steven, Ann Marie and Lenore, along with their spouses, answered the challenge to transform Petteruti Lounge. The space is now in high demand, bringing students, faculty, and alumni together in innovative, collaborative ways. Newly-installed state-of-the-art technologies—including a wide-screen high-definition projection screen, light- and window-shade controls, and an integrated audio visual system—are all regulated by a touch pad at the podium. As engineering department adjunct faculty, Steve and Rob Petteruti understand the value of the technology and look forward to meeting students in the space.
"Petteruti Lounge is now the favorite place on campus for meetings, research and teaching presentations, film showings, and conferences," says Margaret Klawunn, Vice President for Campus Life & Student Services. "The combination of comfortable and functional work and discussion space with the technology for presenting information in a variety of forms has provided a much needed location at the center of campus for student, faculty, and staff events."
The transformation of Brown, Faunce House and the Stephen J. Robert '62 Campus Center, through unprecedented support of the Campaign for Academic Enrichment, will continue to provide generations of Brown students with a first-rate education—and, undoubtedly, stories of their own to share.