About Rothman Institute

Rothman Institute Staff

Dr. Dale G. Caldwell, Executive Director and Professor

As an executive director and professor, Dr. Caldwell is leading the Rothman Institute of Innovation and Entrepreneurship as well as teaching the Silberman College of Business Family Business Management undergraduate class. The Rothman Institute supports, promotes and researches family, veteran and student entrepreneurship. Our signature programs are the Family Business Alliance, Friday Entrepreneurship Program, Veterans Launching Ventures (VLV) and Student Business Plan Competitions. Dr. Caldwell’s research focus is on the creation of “Entrepreneur Zones” in New Jersey. He developed this concept to provide a structured approach to increasing urban entrepreneurship and job creation. His work led to the passing of legislation creating the New Jersey Entrepreneur Zone Working Group that he is chairing. Prior to joining Rothman, Dr. Caldwell was the CEO of Strategic Influence, LLC. This entrepreneurial organization used the “Intelligent Influence” framework that he created to provide strategy, operations, coaching, business development and leadership training to clients.

Dr. Caldwell is the author of six books including the ground-breaking “Intelligent Influence: The 4 Steps of Highly Successful Leaders and Organizations.” He graduated from Princeton University, received an MBA from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and a Doctorate from Seton Hall University. Dr. Caldwell also completed the Harvard Kennedy School Senior Executives in State and Local Government program and the Rutgers Leadership Coaching for Organizational Performance program. He has extensive school board experience.

Dr. Caldwell has served on the New Brunswick Board of Education for 23 years and has been president of the Educational Services Commission of New Jersey for 20 years. In 2009, he was named the New Jersey School Board Member of the Year. In 2015, he was named the Charter School Administrator of the Year for his work leading the Village Charter School. Dr. Caldwell is also an accomplished athlete who has completed three marathons and received national rankings in the United States in duathlon, tennis, and triathlon. In 2021, he was inducted in the United States Tennis Association (USTA) Eastern Tennis Hall of Fame.

Susan Slavin, Rothman Programs Director

Ms. Slavin is supporting the Institute’s efforts to support, promote and research family, veteran and student entrepreneurship. She will be responsible for program management for the outreach and recognition programs.

Ms. Slavin comes to the Institute with a BS in Marketing from the University of Maryland. Her experience spans over 20 years in the fields of marketing, client relations, and employee training with a Fortune 500 company, a small family-owned business, and the Morris County Office of Temporary Assistance.

Maura Pniewski, Assistant to the Executive Director

Graduating with a BA in Fine Arts from the College of Mt. St. Vincent in Riverdale, NY, Maura’s experience includes twelve years at New York City-based Consolidated Cigar Corporation and Gibbs & Hill Engineering before coming to Fairleigh Dickinson University in 1993. Having worked at three Silberman College of Business institutes, her current duties at Rothman include budget analysis and forecasting, design of promotional material, design and content management of external websites, report editing and event planning. 

Advisory Board

  • José Amarista, Conagra Food Service
  • Andrew Bluestone, President, Selective Benefits Group
  • Mario Casabona, President, Casabona Ventures, LLC
  • Dennis Klein, President, Rand, Feuer, & Klein LLC
  • Sakti Kunz, Management Executive, Honeywell, (retired)
  • Jan Margolis, CEO, Applied Research Corporation
  • Micheline Nader, Founder and CEO, Jesra Impact, LLC
  • Gina Tedesco, President, Opus International