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Michael Garanzini, SJ

50 Years a Jesuit
President, Association of Jesuit Colleges and Universities


Father Michael Garanzini, SJ, has been a member of the Society of Jesus for 50 years and has spent the entirety of his ministry in Jesuit education.

Born in St. Louis, he attended Saint Louis University, graduating in 1971 with a bachelor’s degree in psychology and English. He entered the Society of Jesus that fall.

He possesses four additional degrees: a master’s in American Studies, a Master of Divinity in theology, a Master of Theological Studies and a Ph.D. in religion & psychology, which he completed in 1986.

After completing his Ph.D., Fr, Garanzini taught at Regis College (now Regis University), the University of San Francisco and Saint Louis University in the subjects of marriage and family therapy and psychology.

He then began to assume administrative roles, first at SLU and then at Georgetown University as an academic vice president and assistant to the president, respectively.

He was president of Loyola University Chicago from 2001-2014, followed by a two-year stint as the school’s chancellor. He then spent three years as a visiting research professor at Fordham University.

From 2011 to 2020, he also served the international Society of Jesus as general secretary for higher education.

He was named president of the Association of Jesuit Colleges and Universities (AJCU) in July 2020.

Fr. Michael Garanzini’s Reflection on 50 Years as a Jesuit

I entered the Society of Jesus a half century ago, and it continues to amaze me that God has been so generous. The people whose lives I am able to share remind me every day how blessed we are and how merciful is our God. Students, colleagues, friends and family have filled these years with memories, experiences and challenges that keep me feeling grounded and loved.

The Society of Jesus has opened the world to me, and I feel privileged to work with and for people around the globe through our apostolate of education.

Looking back, it is easy to see how my home parish, St. Ambrose, my Marianist education at McBride, my Jesuit education at Saint Louis University prepared me for the opportunities to serve in the different roles that the Society of Jesus has asked of me.

I have many heroes from these places who have and who continue to inspire me. My prayer is simply one of gratitude.

– Fr. Michael Garanzini, SJ