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About

Past Principals

Mark McGowan, Principal

Mark McGowan
BA (Ottawa, History/Religion), PhD (Toronto, History)

July 1, 2002 - June 30, 2011

Mark McGowan is a specialist in the religious, social, migration, and educational history of Canada and is well known in the Canadian media for his analysis of Vatican affairs and the development of religion in Canada. He holds an honours bachelor’ s degree in history and religion from the University of Ottawa (1982) and Masters and Doctoral degrees in history from the University of Toronto. After teaching in the History Department at the University of Ottawa, he was hired by St. Michael’s College, in 1991, where he taught in the Christianity & Culture and Celtic Studies programs, and in the History Department at the University of Toronto. He served as the Principal and Vice-President (Academic) of St. Michael’s College from 2002 to 2011, and currently is co-ordinator of the Book and Media Studies program, which he founded at St. Mike’s in 2003.

In 1999 he published The Waning of the Green: Catholics, the Irish and Identity in Toronto, 1887-1922 (McGill-Queen’s) which won both the Brant Prize (OHS) and the Clio Award (CHA). Mark also completed the first full-length biography of Michael Power (1804-1847), the first bishop of Toronto, which won the Toronto Historical Board’s Award of Excellence. His prize-winning Death or Canada: The Irish Famine Migration to Toronto, 1847 (2009) was made into a feature film produced jointly in Canada and Ireland and which was nominated for 4 Irish film awards. He is a past President of the Canadian Catholic Historical Association and currently serves as President of the Canadian Society of Church History. He is the recent recipient of a SSHRC grant to investigate Irish Catholic migration and settlement in Nova Scotia.

A recipient of four University teaching awards, Mark is deeply committed to undergraduate teaching and has assisted, in 2012-2013, as a Special Advisor to the Vice Provost, Students, at the University of Toronto.

Joseph Boyle

Joseph Boyle
BA (LaSalle), PhD (Georgetown)
July 1, 1991 - June 30, 2002

Joe Boyle served two terms as Principal of St. Michael’s College. During his term he worked on the expansion and strengthening of the College programs. He made relations between St Michael’s and the University of Toronto a priority. He continues to teach in the Department of Philosophy. His research interests include: Moral philosophy, ethical theory and applied ethics, natural law, Thomistic ethics, bioethics. Publications in these areas and on free will and intention; most recent book, (with J. Finnis and G. Grisez) Nuclear Deterrence, Morality, and Realism (1987).

William B. Dunphy

William B. Dunphy
BA (UofT), MA, PhD
1926-1998, July 1, 1981 - June 30, 1991

Bill Dunphy served two terms as Principal of St Michael’s College. He taught Ancient, Medieval, and Modern Philosophy. A talented, humane, academic administrator and diplomat, his judgment, advice, and common sense reactions were often sought, as was his service on innumerable College and University committees. His contributions to the growth of the St Michael’s College Progams in Christianity and Culture and in Celtic Studies were, to say the least, significant, and his concern for, and personal support of, the continued development of the Writing and Math Labs form just one sign of his devotion to and his desire to assist the academic welfare of the students of St Michael's. In his retirement he continued his scholarly research and writing and remained active in social and inter-faith issues and groups.

Laurence E. Lynch

Laurence E. Lynch
BA (UoT), MA (UofT), MSL (PIMS), PhD (UofT)
July 1, 1976 - June 30, 1981

Larry Lynch served as Principal of St Michael’s for 5 years, the first person to hold that office after it was separated from the office of the President; and it was with common sense, courage, and good humor that he confronted the challenges inherent in defining that new position. Prior to becoming Principal he was Chair of the St. Michael’s College Department of Philosophy from 1960-1975. In addition to his significant scholarly, pedagogical, and adminitrative contributions, Larry Lynch will be remembered with deep affection for his largeness of spirit, his spontaneous generosity, his quick wit, and his inveterate Christian optimism.