16 December 2019
From: Gery Short, Chair, Board of Regents, Franciscan School of Theology To:
Re: President, Franciscan School of Theology
On behalf of the Regents of the Franciscan School of Theology (FST) and the Provincial, Fr. David Gaa, OFM and Trustees of the St. Barbara Province of the Order of Friars Minor, I write to notify you of the resignation of FST’s President, Fr. Michael Higgins, TOR, effective immediately. Fr. Mike provided leadership during a critical period of the school’s growth and development, and his departure in no way derived from any personal, financial, or other impropriety. His contributions to FST are numerous, spearheading its move from the campus of Old Mission San Luis Rey in Oceanside to that of the University of San Diego (USD), establishing a new and promising relationship with the Catholic Diocese of San Diego to educate its presbyteral candidates, and expanding the degree offerings of the school to meet the emerging needs of those preparing for ministry. We are most grateful for Fr. Mike’s generous service and leadership, wishing him “fair winds and following seas” as he rejoins his Province and the companionship of his brother friars.
We are also pleased to announce that Fr. Garrett Galvin, OFM has accepted our invitation to serve as FST’s next President. This seamless transition assures the continuity of the good work begun by Fr. Mike, work that will assuredly continue with Fr. Garrett’s able leadership. He has served as FST’s Vice President and Rector since 2016 and as Associate Professor of Sacred Scripture since 2009. He holds a M. Div. from FST, M.A. degree from the Graduate Theological Union, M.A. and Ph.D. degrees from the Catholic University of America, and a STL from the Jesuit School of Theology. In addition to an impressive record of scholarship and teaching, Fr. Garrett is a seasoned and effective administrator, currently responsible for the Academic Affairs and Enrollment Management units of the school. As a member of USD’s Provost’s Council, he has established superb working relationships with his colleagues at the university, thereby strengthening our institutional affiliation. In short, we are fortunate to have a leader within our community so well prepared for this important leadership role, and we are grateful to Fr. Garrett for his generous response and willingness to serve as FST’s next President.
I ask you to join us in extending best wishes to Fr. Mike as he pursues his next mission and our gratitude and congratulations to Fr. Garrett as he assumes the leadership of our beloved school.
May you and your families have a blessed and joyous Christmas! Gery Short
Chair, Board of Regents Franciscan School of Theology