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Catholic Education Leader Named Fairfield Prep Commencement Speaker

Rev. Joseph O'Keefe will be the 2015 commencement speaker at Fairfield Prep May 31.
Rev. Joseph O'Keefe will be the 2015 commencement speaker at Fairfield Prep May 31. Photo Credit: Contributed

FAIRFIELD, Conn. -- Fairfield Prep has announced its 2015 commencement speaker will be the Rev. Joseph O'Keefe, an accomplished expert on Catholic education and education leadership.

The commencement will take place at 10 a.m. Sunday, May 31 at Alumni Hall on campus. O’Keefe serves as director of the Center for Ignatian Spirituality at Boston College, in addition to his role as tenured professor at the Lynch School of Education, where he served as associate dean for two years and dean for eight years.

He taught French and Spanish at Bishop Connolly High School in Fall River, Mass., Boston College High School, and Cheverus High School in Portland, Maine. He has had visiting faculty positions at the Australian Catholic University, the Catholic University of America and Georgetown University.

An internationally recognized expert on Catholic education, O’Keefe is the editor or co-editor of 12 books and author or co-author of more than 40 articles and book chapters on Catholic education and educational leadership. He has been a keynote speaker and consultant for educators in the United States, the United Kingdom. Australia, Ireland, Canada, France, Italy and Chile.

In 2012, Secretary of Education Arne Duncan appointed him to the National Assessment Governing Board, which oversees the National Assessment of Educational Progress. He has been a trustee at five Jesuit universities, along with several high schools, middle schools and a health care facility for children with special needs.

O’Keefe entered the Society of Jesus in 1976 and was ordained in 1986. He received his bachelor’s degree in philosophy from the College of the Holy Cross, a Master of Arts degree in French from Fordham University, a Master of Divinity degree and Licentiate in Sacred Theology from the Weston Jesuit School of Theology (now the School of Theology and Ministry at Boston College).

In addition, O’Keefe received his doctorate in administration, planning and social policy from the Harvard University Graduate School of Education.

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