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A New Street at Cal State Fullerton Named for
Businessman and Philanthropist Paul Folino
CSUF President Milton A. Gordon and College of Business and Economics Dean Anil Puri flank philanthropist Paul Folino at the November meeting of the CSU Board of Trustees. The board approved the naming of Folino Drive on campus, in honor of the donor’s support for the university.
Philanthropist, recognized for his support of the university's College of Business and Economics, receives naming of the new street at the campus' southeast entrance, Folino Drive.

November 16, 2006 :: No. 80

Actors look for their names up in lights, but Paul Folino, executive chairman of the board of the Costa Mesa-based Emulex, will soon see his name aloft at the new entrance to Cal State Fullerton.

In recognition of his support of the university’s College of Business and Economics, the California State University Board of Trustees Wednesday approved the naming of the new street at the campus’ southeast entrance, Folino Drive. The recently opened seven-lane thoroughfare borders the college’s future home, a $79 million five-story building, now taking shape as steel girders are being lifted into place by cranes.

“Paul has been a great leader in terms of his support for our business building,” said President Milton A. Gordon, Cal State Fullerton’s president. “More than that, his interest and energy in working with faculty, staff and other community leaders has been a great asset in bringing success to the campaign for the College of Business and Economics.”

Folino made a $1 million gift commitment to the university in 2002 to launch the campaign for the business college — and serves as the campaign’s vice chair. Since that time, Folino has increased his support by donating $125,000 to the city of Fullerton for the purpose of funding the new entrance to the campus.

“Paul’s initial donation helped us launch the building campaign for the new home of the college, and his subsequent contribution to the city of Fullerton underwrote an essential street improvement,” said Anil Puri, dean of the College of Business and Economics. “Without his support, it would have been very difficult to get this project under way at such a fast pace.”

The philanthropist also serves on the Dean’s Advisory Board for the College of Business and Economics, and in 2005, received the Orange County Titan Award during Cal State Fullerton’s 10th annual Front & Center gala.

A native of Washington, Folino earned his bachelor’s degree in social sciences from Central Washington State University. Like many Cal State Fullerton students, he worked full time while completing his M.B.A. at Seattle University.

Among his career successes is the role he played as a member of the original Xerox Corp. team that launched Ethernet networking products into the marketplace in the 1970s. During his three-year tenure as president and COO of Thomas-Conrad Corp., he spearheaded the company’s growth from $18 million to almost $60 million in revenue — earning the manufacturer recognition from INC Magazine as one of the fastest-growing privately held corporations in America.

In 1993, Folino joined Emulex, a manufacturer of devices for data storage networking with a market value of $1.4 billion. Under his stewardship, the company had the No. 1 performing public stock in Orange County in the 1990s. Folino’s leadership was recognized by Ernst & Young LLP, first in 1999, when he was named Orange County Co-Entrepreneur of the Year in technology, and in the following year, as Orange County Director of the Year for high-growth technology.  

In addition to his support of Cal State Fullerton, Folino has served in leadership roles and made significant financial commitments to several Orange County nonprofit organizations, including the Orange County Performing Arts Center and South Coast Repertory Theatre.

“Paul epitomizes the promise of a public school education,” noted Puri. He is “hardworking, entrepreneurial, ethical and committed to giving back to the community.”


Media Contacts:

Anil Puri, dean of Cal State Fullerton’s College of Business and Economics, at 657-278-4852 or
Pamela McLaren of Public Affairs at 657-278-4852 or

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