St. Vincent College President Jim Towey to Resign

The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review has reported that Saint Vincent College’s president, Jim Towey, plans to resign his position next June. It’s a position he has held since 2006.

The former director of the White House Office of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives under the Bush administration, Towey had previously served as legal counsel for Mother Teresa’s Missionaries of Charity for 12 years.

He describes how Mother Teresa changed his life in this Register interview.

“I came as a stranger to academia, and my view was there were things I wanted to accomplish here,” said Towey. “I didn’t come to stay. I came to make a difference.”

The Register interviewed Towey shortly before he took office.

He had both admirers and detractors at the school.

Among his accomplishments while president, Towey helped raise more than $35 million, renovated buildings and athletic facilities on campus, and started the college’s largest building project — the $30 million Sis and Herman Dupre Science Pavilion. The school has had record levels of enrollment. He was also one of very few Catholic college presidents to block Internet gambling and pornography websites on the campus’ computer network, as told in this Register story.

In response to his leadership, 31 of the college’s tenured faculty signed a letter citing their concerns for the future of the college, and nearly two dozen faculty and administrators quit.

“He … has succeeded in moving the college from being a well-respected regional college to a nationally recognized college of excellence,” said Archabbot Douglas Nowicki, who added that Towey had done an “outstanding job.”