“My four years at Montclair State gave me the education, maturity, worldly view and confidence to pursue my professional and family dreams,” says Daniel Infanti ’76. He credits his education at Montclair State University as the launching point for a successful 40 year executive career in the marketing, communications and advertising field. In the summer of 2016, Infanti retired and since then has been enjoying life at the Jersey shore, spending time with family and friends as well as traveling and playing golf. During his career, Infanti held senior level marketing positions in a wide variety of consumer and business-to-business companies in the tech and financial services industries. However, 35 years of his career were spent at four major international corporations which included Sharp, CIT Group, Avaya and Congoleum. “The array of companies has taught me so much and given me the opportunity to travel throughout the U.S. and to many countries around the world,” says Infanti.
When he first arrived at Montclair State, Infanti had plans of becoming a teacher. Those plans soon changed at the start of freshman year when he realized that a career in business would perhaps create more job opportunities upon graduation. He made the switch to a business major with concentrations in marketing and management and stuck with it. After a career full of success, it was without a doubt the best decision and direction he could have taken at that time.
Coming to Montclair State from Keyport, a very small Jersey shore town, was a big change for Infanti. It was his first time living away from home and moving to a “big city”. However, as he puts it, “it helped me grow up quickly and learn how to live and interact with people from all backgrounds. This helped me not only during my years at Montclair State, but throughout my life.”
As an undergraduate, Infanti lived in Stone Hall for all four years. Although designated as a freshman dorm, Infanti and his closest friends decided to continue living in Stone Hall because of the jobs that the residence hall provided to upperclassmen. Living there also gave them the opportunity to meet new groups of people each fall semester. If not in Stone Hall, you could find Infanti and friends in the recently opened Student Center. The student lounge, game room and rathskeller pub provided a central gathering spot for all students.
When it came to his studies, Infanti was determined to obtain as much information as he could regarding a career in business. He was an active member of the recently established Marketing Club and attended every business related on-campus speaker event. It was due to his consistent determination that he was able to get started in a business career upon graduation. Through The Center for Career Services, Infanti was able to obtain a Sales Representative position at Congoleum Corporation, a major floor covering manufacturer in Kearny, NJ. “The position eventually lead me to a promotion to the marketing department that then guided the balance of my career,” he says.
Infanti holds a special place in his heart for Montclair State University, not only for the exceptional education he received as the first college graduate in his family, but for being the place where he met Joette Franco ‘76, the love of his life and wife of 38 years and mother of his two sons. To say the least, he holds nothing but fond memories of his days at Montclair State. “The education, the friends made, the growth as a person and the opportunities that came my way were all lasting impressions,” he says.
One piece of advice to undergraduates? “There is a big world out there with so many opportunities. Don’t be afraid to take career risks and to embrace everything you can. Sometimes the things you think are most trivial or intimidating, might turn out to be great opportunities to learn and grow.”