Rev. Gregory Francis Lucey, S.J., 34th and 36th President of Spring Hill College and former “Mobilian of the Year” has passed away. He died peacefully in his sleep just before 8:00 a.m. this morning at St. Camillus Jesuit Community in Wauwatosa, WI. A funeral will be held in Milwaukee, WI. Spring Hill College is making plans for a memorial Mass and burial in Mobile, AL.
E. Joseph Lee, PhD, President of Spring Hill College reflected “Fr. Lucey touched so many lives here at Spring Hill College and in our community. While his loss will be felt deeply for some time to come, his love for Christ, the College, and the Mobile community will continue to live on. We see evidence of his stewardship all over campus. As we reflect on his legacy, remember his family and our community in your prayers.”
Lucey became the 34th President of Spring Hill College on June 1, 1997. During his presidency, six new buildings and three residence halls were built, and renovations of 12 existing buildings and the athletic fields were completed. He led the efforts to restore St. Joseph Chapel and was responsible for many restorations and developments throughout campus
In 2005, Lucey received the Civitan Club of Mobile’s “Mobilian of the Year” award in recognition of his many improvements to Spring Hill’s campus and his efforts to incorporate the Mobile community. In 2009, the newly-restored Rev. Gregory F. Lucey, S.J. Administration Center was named in his honor.
Rev. Robert L. Poirier, PsyD, S.J, Rector of Spring Hill’s Jesuit Community said, “Fr. Lucey’s love for St. Ignatius and the Society of Jesus will never be forgotten. His passion for Ignatian Spiritually encouraged growth throughout our community. We are grateful that we had the opportunity to serve with him. We will honor his legacy through our love and service as he did every day.”
Lucey left Spring Hill in 2009 to lead the Association of Jesuit Colleges and Universities (AJCU) in Washington, D.C., overseeing 28 Jesuit Colleges and Universities in the United States. He returned to Spring Hill in 2013 to serve a second term as 36th President until 2015. He was then appointed Chancellor and served the College until 2020.
He has served as the vice president of development at Seattle University and as the rector of the Jesuit Community at Marquette University. Other career highlights include serving in the 34th General Congregation of the Society of Jesus in 1995 and serving as the president and chairman of the board of the National Jesuit Conference in Washington, D.C.
One of seven children, Lucey, grew up in Ferryville, WI. He earned both undergraduate and graduate degrees from Saint Louis University. Additionally, he earned a master’s degree from the University of Notre Dame and a doctorate from the University of Wisconsin at Madison. He entered the Society of Jesus in 1951 and was ordained a priest in 1964. In August 2020, Lucey celebrated his 70th year in the Society of Jesus.
ABOUT SPRING HILL COLLEGE:
Founded in 1830, Spring Hill College is the oldest Catholic college in the Southeast and the third-oldest Jesuit college in the United States. Spring Hill combines the Jesuit tradition of excellence in education and a commitment to caring for the whole person – mind, body, and spirit – with innovative educational experiences. Located in Mobile, Ala., Spring Hill’s mission is to form leaders engaged in learning, faith, justice, and service for life. As a result, Spring Hill students are engaged, inspired, and transformed by their experiences.
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