Ex-president of St. Vincent to head Fla. university
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Jim Towey, the former president of St. Vincent College in Latrobe, has been named president of Ave Maria University in Naples, Fla.
Mr. Towey, who was head of the White House office for faith-based initiatives during the second Bush administration and had also been legal counsel for Mother Teresa, was president of St. Vincent from 2006 to 2010. His tenure was marked by growth in enrollment and finances at the Benedictine college. But there were also complaints from many tenured faculty that he used heavy-handed tactics to bring in his own personnel. When he resigned in 2010, Mr. Towey admitted to "some rookie errors" when he first came to the college from outside academia. "I may have moved a little too fast," he said.
He now takes the helm of a school founded in 2002 by Dominos Pizza founder Thomas Monaghan, who continues as chancellor but will relinquish his CEO duties to Mr. Towey. Ave Maria's mission is to teach according to the values of the Catholic Church and uphold its beliefs.
The outgoing president is Nicholas Healy, who had previously been in administration at the Franciscan University of Steubenville.
"It is a new day at Ave Maria and I am excited about the future," Mr. Towey said. "The start up phase is over, a strong foundation is now in place, and now we must go about he difficult work of building the best Catholic liberal arts university in America."
First Published February 10, 2011 3:09 pm