David Bugatto '86 (Business Administration)
Supporting students keeps Bugatto connected to campus
Determination. It’s what pushed David Bugatto to graduate from Sac State with a business degree. And it’s what ultimately got him re-engaged with the campus, helping to build the Honors Program.
Bugatto was in his senior year at the University when he found himself just short of graduation. Discovering that the one course he needed was full, “I went to class anyway and sat on the floor,” he says.
“The professor kept telling me that there was no room for me but I kept coming back,” he says. “And he finally let me in.”
That persistence came into play years later, while pursuing a successful career in real estate development. Bugatto decided it was time to come back to campus. He knew he wanted to get involved, but he also wanted the right fit.
“As soon as he arrived on campus I called up President Gonzalez and said that I wanted to help,” he says. “We talked several times about ways to work with the University. But nothing piqued my interest.
“Then I heard about the Honors Program.”
Bugatto says he saw the program as a chance to elevate the stature of the University. “It is also a great opportunity to engage some of the brilliant minds in the community so they could receive an education locally,” says the third-generation Sacramento native.
As chair of the Honors Program Advisory Board he has a front-row perspective on those brilliant minds. “They are bright, they are engaging, and they are inquisitive,” he says. “When you get around them, there is a lot of conversation. It fosters a better experience—it’s very collegiate.”
He also favors the program’s liberal arts focus and commitment to securing internships for students. “A liberal arts education gives students a leg up so that they can be very competitive on a global basis. They can converse with anybody in many areas that they get exposed to, not just their own. They have a broader view of the world.
“Ultimately we want to get students on the path to success. That’s why we have the internship program. We want to identify opportunities for them while they are getting their education.”
Bugatto learned the value of internships during his time at Sac State. A joint internship that had him working in both the public and private sectors sparked his interest in real estate and landed him his first job with Sacramento Savings Bank. He is now president and CEO of Alleghany Properties, managing a diverse real estate portfolio of office buildings, retail, apartments, hotels and land development projects in the greater Sacramento region. He also coordinates development activities at Natomas Crossing.
This spring, he was honored with the Distinguished Service Award from the Sacramento State Alumni Association and the University.
Off campus, Bugatto is active with several organizations including the RCA Community Fund, the Urban Land Institute, the International Council of Shopping Centers, Lambda Alpha International and NAIOP, the Commercial Real Estate Development Association.
Bugatto says Sacramento State has made a lasting impact on him as an individual, and on the community as a whole.
“Sacramento State prepared me for the realities of the job world,” he says. “And it continues to educate, encourage and engage a new generation, instilling in them the essential principles of education, enthusiasm and an enduring commitment to community.”