This week in Villanova History … January 29, 1988

By Noel E. Falco, News Editor

The Rev. John M. Driscoll, O.S.A., announced his plans to retire as president of Villanova University at a Dec. 8 meeting of the University’s Board of Trustees. His retirement will be effective as of August.

Driscoll, 64, said health was “a major consideration” in his decision to step down but “not the only one by a long shot,” according to a Philadelphia Inquirer article.

Eugene J. Ruane, director of public relations at the University, said that health was a factor, but in addition Driscoll will have held the office for 13 years in August.

“He’s forced to ponder his mortality, perhaps. You think maybe there are things you’d enjoy more,” Ruane said.

Driscoll underwent quintuple bypass surgery last spring and was fitted with a pacemaker. Ruane said this operation was a success and returned Driscoll to comparatively normal health.

Driscoll, who was elected president in 1975, told the board that much of what he set out to do 12 years ago has been accomplished. He said that both the time and circumstances seemed right for his decision, according to a University press release.

It is the expectation of both the board and Driscoll that he will continue to be associated with the work of the University in the future said the release. The position he will hold has yet to be decided.

Search committee appointed

A search subcommittee of the board of trustees has been appointed by the Rev. Edward J. McCarthy, O.S.A., chairman of the Board of Trustees and Driscoll’s predecessor as president. This committee will search for candidates for the position and will forward its president’s findings to the board, said Student Government President Phil Brach, a student member of the committee.

Ruane listed the committee members, which include six trustees: Thomas F. Devine, Esq., Edward J. Caughlin III, Joseph J. Donahue, Dr. Margaret M Healy, Rev. William J. Drupa, O.S.A. and John J. Quindlen.

He also listed five constituent representatives: Brach, Alvin A. Clay, dean of the College of Commerce and Finance, staff member Katherine Lawless, Dr. Philip Maurone, University Senate chairperson, physics professor, and alumnus Edward Riley.