John F. Castano '00
A master’s degree in strategic communication from Seton Hall has empowered John Castano to make a difference in the community. As vice president for operations and external affairs for New Jersey SEEDS, a nonprofit organization committed to developing future leaders from the state’s least privileged communities, Castano helps ensure they have the aptitude and access to thrive in the nation’s finest schools and colleges.
Castano followed a similar mission as the former director and current advisory committee member of the Griffin Bridges Program at Seton Hall Prep, helping academically capable, at-risk inner city students acquire a prep school education. From 1992 through 2002, Castano held a number of positions at Seton Hall Prep, including marketing director, English teacher and forensics instructor. In addition to his professional duties, he helped enrich the lives of students through extracurricular activities. He created the student ambassador program, developed peer leadership and Irish studies programs and coached the junior varsity tennis team.
In addition to his work with New Jersey SEEDS and Seton Hall Prep, Castano has been active in civil and social causes throughout his career. He is a current trustee (and immediate past president) of Jersey Cares, an organization dedicated to organizing volunteer opportunities throughout the state. He also serves as a consultant to the Violence Prevention and Victim Assistance Office at Rutgers University and on the mayor’s Senior Council in his hometown of Caldwell, New Jersey.
A Seton Hall education has become a tradition for the Castano family. John counts both of his parents, two brothers and two sisters-in-law as fellow Pirates. In 2012, the University presented Castano with the Many Are One Humanitarian Award in recognition of his service to local communities, philanthropy and his commitment to the field of education.