Former Friar Director of Athletics John Marinatto ’79 passed away today (June 12). Marinatto, who also served as the sports information director, spent 14 years (1987-00) overseeing the College’s athletic department. He also worked at the BIG EAST Conference for 10 years (2002-12) as a senior associate commissioner and as the commissioner.
“The Providence College family is saddened by the death of John Marinatto,” Providence College Director of Athletics Bob Driscoll said. “John was so committed to helping Providence College, the student-athletes and the BIG EAST Conference. He spent most of his life serving Providence College and the BIG EAST. He was one of most dedicated and tireless administrators that I have ever worked with. He will be missed.”
Marinatto began his career in the Friar Athletic Department in 1975. Former Friar Men’s Basketball Head Coach Dave Gavitt hired him as a manager for the basketball team. When he graduated in 1979, he remained at the College and worked as the Director of Alumni Development before transitioning into the media relations and director of sports promotion roles.
During his early years at Providence College, Marinatto was mentored by Gavitt, Friar SID Mike Tranghese and the Director of Athletics Lou Lamoriello.
In 1987, while Marinatto served as the sports information director, Head Coach Rick Pitino led Billy Donovan and the Friar men’s basketball team to Final Four. Marinatto often mentioned this as one of his fondest memories.
Marinatto left Providence College in 2000 and began working at the BIG EAST Conference in 2002 as a Senior Associate Commissioner. It was a position he held until 2009 when he became the Commissioner. He served as the Commissioner until 2012.