School of Business Building and Programs Supporter Elliot Mayrock '73

Adding to Family Legacy

Over the years, the gifts Elliot Mayrock ’73 has made to the College have supported a variety of student opportunities while establishing a substantial philanthropic legacy for the Mayrock family. Most recently, among other campaign contributions, he made a significant gift to the new School of Business building. In honor of his generosity, a classroom in a prominent location will bear the names of Elliot’s parents, Harry and Marjorie Fortunoff Mayrock.

The elder Mayrocks were accomplished businesspeople. The family had a prominent role in building Fortunoff stores, a distinctive retail operation in the New York area. Their son feels that celebrating their memory in the new business school is an appropriate honor.

After graduating, Mayrock joined the Fortunoff management team; he was responsible for developing the company’s successful home furnishings business.

Mayrock’s duties took him around the globe in search of unique products. He made his first of many visits to China in 1979, and “started developing relationships with the Chinese community,” he says. He has watched growth and development transform Asia and now thinks the area is ready to become a dominant world leader.

Mayrock recognizes that the new business school building offers the potential to transform IC’s academic programs. One way for the school to grow is to engage the nascent business communities of Asia. “Ithaca can reach out to an eager academic and entrepreneurial community through the universal medium of business studies,” he says.

Soon Mayrock and his wife, Alecia, and their two children will embark on an extended trip to China. “We may stay nine months to a year,” he says. “We want our children to experience the culture first-hand, so when they grow up they will have an intrinsic understanding of it, no matter what they choose to do with their lives.”

Elliot Mayrock’s focus on the future is based on a solid understanding of the past. He graduated with honors in history. “I learned so much at Ithaca,” he says. “I was deeply touched by wonderful people like [history professors] Paul McBride and Joe Tempesta. Ithaca also gave me my first exposure to international studies, in a course taught by Jack Pavia.”

Mayrock’s early gifts to the College established learning programs devoted to history and that honored the memory of his parents. In 1979 he set up the Marjorie Fortunoff Mayrock Memorial Lecture Series in history, a vibrant program that has brought many notable historians, including Walter LaFeber, to campus. Later he created the Harry Mayrock Memorial Award, also devoted to the study of history, and in 1997 he endowed the Elliot Mayrock ’73 History Scholarship to help deserving students.

Elliot Mayrock and his family are returning the generosity of Ithaca faculty by making a world of difference for his alma mater and its students—today and tomorrow.


You, too, can help Ithaca College business students get the best possible preparation for successful lives as global citizens, in the innovative sustainable learning laboratory now under construction. Join Elliot Mayrock and his family in making a world of difference; contribute to the School of Business priority. Visit and click on “Give to Campaign” at the left, then check “School of Business building” on the contribution form. Watch construction progress at