BRIDGEPORT—Kevin Lawlor, retired chief operating officer of Fairfield University, has been named by Bishop Frank J. Caggiano to lead the new Seton Collaborative of the Diocese of Bridgeport.
The Seton Collaborative is designed to be a service organization that seeks to partner with diocesan schools and parishes to provide operational excellence and best in class support to principals and pastors. It will provide financial expertise and other operational support including information technology, to leverage economy of scale and operational efficiencies.
“We are delighted that Kevin Lawlor has agreed to serve as executive director as we launch the Seton Collaborative, which I believe will be the signature initiative to improve efficiencies and lead to the best use of resources, while freeing up our diocesan education leaders and pastors to focus on essential ministry,” said Bishop Caggiano.
The bishop said the decision to move ahead with the Seton Collaborative grew out of the ongoing work of the Diocesan Education Commission that created a strategic plan to sustain, support and promote Catholic schools, which have recently experienced a significant increase in enrollment.
“Kevin Lawlor provided valuable expertise and professional judgment in his service as a member of the Education Commission and in his many volunteer and professional contributions to Catholic education. As a senior executive, he understands the challenges and opportunities ahead, and is prepared to guide this important start-up for the diocese,” the bishop said.
While the need for the initiative was initially focused on upgrading the level of professional and operational services available to Catholic schools in the diocese, the services of Seton Collaborative will also be available to parishes, who will benefit from additional expertise in areas such as finances and information technology.
The bishop said he believes the Seton Collaborative will represent a major step forward in diocesan operations by bringing schools and parishes the professional resources that are critical to innovation, growth and development.
“I am grateful to all who have made this much needed initiative possible and who have contributed to the research and planning. The Seton Collaborative represents the investment and engagement of many talented and dedicated and faithful people,” the bishop said.
More about Kevin Lawlor: Recently Mr. Lawlor retired from his post as executive vice president and chief operating officer of Fairfield University where he oversaw human resources, legal, information technologies, student life and security along with the finances of the university.
Mr. Lawlor led the development and implementation of Fairfield’s new strategic plan Fairfield 2020 and the planning and execution of the university’s master plan, the largest construction and renovation program in the university’s history. Mr. Lawlor was also instrumental in restructuring and strengthening Fairfield’s financial posture. Most recently Mr. Lawlor led the university’s COVID-19 planning and response efforts.
Prior to joining Fairfield, Mr. Lawlor spent more than 30 years in senior executive roles at United Technologies Corporation, AAR Corporation and RBC Bearings serving most recently as vice president and GM of AAR’s Precision Systems division in Huntsville Alabama. At UTC he played critical roles in finance, strategic planning, M&A and program management, as well as the integration of multinational corporate units.
After graduating from Fairfield University in 1979 with a bachelor’s of science in Accounting from the Dolan School of Business, he earned a master’s degree in Taxation from the University of New Haven. He was subsequently named an Alfred P. Sloan Fellow at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), where he received a Master’s of Business Administration in Finance. Mr. Lawlor studied strategic cost management at the Harvard Business School and undertook senior executive training at the Darden School of the University of Virginia. He currently serves as a director of the Connecticut Society of Certified Public Accountants.
In addition to his professional achievements, Kevin P. Lawlor, CPA has deep roots in Catholic education having served as the chief operating officer of Fairfield University for the past eight years, he continues to serve on the Diocese of Bridgeport’s Education Commission, and the advisory board of Sacred Heart Academy in Hamden, Conn. Mr. Lawlor previously chaired the board of St Bridget School in Cheshire, Conn.
Mr. Lawlor and his wife Marianne have four daughters Emma, Rachel, Abbey and Hannah and a new granddaughter Polly.
The Seton Collaborative has been incorporated by the diocese as a separate 501C3 corporation (not for profit). Additional personnel and services will be announced over the next six months.
(For more information on the Seton Collaborative, contact: Kevin.Lawlor@Setoncollaborative.org)