Fairfield University's Academic Vice President
 named President of University of San Francisco


Image: Paul FitzgeraldThe Rev. Paul J. Fitzgerald, S.J., Fairfield University's Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs, has been selected the 28th President of the University of San Francisco (USF). USF officials made the announcement on Tuesday, April 8, following a meeting of the University's Board of Trustees. The Rev. Stephen A. Privett, S.J., the current USF president and a trustee of Fairfield University, announced his departure in September 2013, having served as President of the Jesuit institution since 2000.

Father Fitzgerald came to Fairfield University in 2009 from Santa Clara University where he served as Senior Associate Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences. When appointed to the Fairfield leadership post, he was the only Jesuit chief academic officer in the 28 colleges and universities within the AJCU. In May 2013, he announced his intention to return to the California Province of the Society of Jesus.

While at Fairfield, Father Fitzgerald advanced the University and its schools through numerous initiatives that strengthened the curriculum, played a critical role in the evolution of shared governance, and contributed to enhancing the overall student experience.

Commenting on his years at Fairfield, Father Fitzgerald had this to say: "These past five years have prepared me well for my next assignment. My faculty and staff colleagues have shown me again and again what it is to offer a 21st century Jesuit education, employing a renewed Ignatian pedagogy and effecting a profound intellectual, ethical, and personal transformation of our graduate and undergraduate students over the course of their studies.

"Through our culture of shared governance, the faculty and staff on the many committees on which I have had the pleasure to serve have demonstrated steady wisdom, ample kindness, and careful responsibility. I am especially grateful to the deans and directors of the college, library, schools, centers, and programs who have enacted our Jesuit mission and identity on a daily basis, and of course, I am most grateful to the members of my immediate team, the associate vice presidents, and the administrators who have supported my work on a daily basis. As I look forward to the move back to California, and as I anticipate all of the new friendships and partnerships that await me at the University of San Francisco, I am confident that many fruitful and life-giving years stand before me because of my experience here at Fairfield these past years."

Fairfield President Jeffrey P. von Arx, S.J., said, "During his tenure, Father Fitzgerald has contributed immensely to the advancement of Fairfield University and to the betterment of those it serves. His passionate dedication to our mission, his boundless energy and constant pursuit of excellence has served as a model for us all. He will be greatly missed by the University community and, by me, personally. I have greatly valued our association and friendship. That said, we are delighted at the wonderful opportunity that he has been presented, especially since it is at our sister Jesuit university in San Francisco. We look forward to having the chance to continue to work with him in shared endeavors that forward our institutions in serving the greater good."

Father Fitzgerald will assume the Presidency at USF on August 1.

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Media Contact: Mike Horyczun, (203) 254-4000 ext. 2647, mhoryczun@fairfield.edu

Posted on April 9, 2014

Vol. 46, No. 265