Romanaggi graduated from the University of Portland in 1956 and then earned his medical degree in 1960 from Loyola University’s Stritch School of Medicine. His medical practice in Portland specialized in treatment of allergy, asthma, and immunology. In 1997, he retired from active practice after 31 years. While practicing medicine, he also was an associate professor of the volunteer teaching faculty at Oregon Health Sciences University.
He and his late wife Agnes, a 1959 University of Portland graduate, have been generous to the University over the years. They were the major donors to the Old Science Hall that in November 2010 was renamed Romanaggi Hall. The gift helped fund new windows throughout, renovation of the third floor, roof improvements, the first thorough cleaning of its masonry in seventy years, construction of handicapped access venues and an elevator. The Romanaggis, who were married for almost 50 years, also made an estate planning gift to provide continued maintenance of the building.
The Romanaggis were the originators and major contributors to the Rev. John Molter, C.S.C. Endowed Chair in Science. The gift honored the professor from whom he once earned a dollar. Molter had promised a dollar to any student who got an A in his science class, and those were rare dollars indeed.
Dr. Romanaggi also contributed to the creation of Swindells Hall, the University’s second science hall. He and Agnes established and funded the Romanaggi Endowed Scholarship in Pre-Med and the Rev. Lombardo, C.S.C. Scholarship in Religion.
After Agnes’ passing in 2008, Dr. Romanaggi funded the Agnes M. Romanaggi Environmental Lab in the Donald Shiley Hall, which houses the Shiley School of Engineering.
A member of the Board of Regents since 1991, Romanaggi’s main focus has been the College of Arts and Sciences.
Romanaggi’s gift is part of the University’s RISE Campaign, which was announced in December 2010 and seeks to raise $175 million by 2014. The campaign has raised more than $168 million to date and is one of the largest development campaigns ever for a Pacific Northwest private college or university.
The campaign’s goals are divided into four major themes, each with funding targets: (1) Pursuing academic excellence and faculty funding – $70 million; (2) Providing access for all students and direct assistance – $45 million; (3) Developing faith and leadership – $10 million; and (4) Enriching the campus community and physical resources – $50 million.