DiStanislao served as an administrator in the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, and then for the 12 years preceding her departure for Marquette, held leadership positions in the Division of Recreation and Intercollegiate Athletics at Penn. There, she had direct management responsibilities for more than 100 staff members as part of a department with a budget of approximately $40 million, while also serving as an adjunct professor in the Graduate School of Education. She was also a member of the Provost’s Committee for Academic Planning and Budget.
Her diverse career includes work in private industry and coaching at the Division I level. She was the first women’s basketball coach at Northwestern University, when the sport gained varsity status there in 1975, and was twice named conference coach of the year during her tenure as head women’s basketball coach at the University of Notre Dame in the 1980s.
DiStanislao holds a doctorate in higher education from the Graduate School of Education at the University of Pennsylvania, a master of arts in education from the School of Education and Social Policy at Northwestern University, and an MBA from Northwestern’s Kellogg School of Management.