News: SJEC has new director

July 5, 2019

Tom Quinlan

On behalf of Dr. Dan Ryan, President of Dowling Catholic High School, and a committee of pastors from the Des Moines metropolitan area, the diocese is pleased to announce that Tom Quinlan will assume the role of Ministry Director of the St. Joseph Educational Centeron July 1.

For the past 25 years, Quinlan has served in parish and diocesan catechetical ministry in northern Illinois. He most recently served the Diocese of Joliet as Director of Religious Education for 17 years. He is a published author of two books, Excellence in Ministry (Loyola Press, 2017) and How to Talk to Children about the Mass (Twenty-Third Publications, 2017), and has presented throughout the U.S. and Canada. His experience also includes extensive work with the National Conference for Catechetical Leadership, serving on the governance board, representative council and multiple committees.

“Tom is a uniquely qualified individual with his years of experience both at the parish and diocesan levels,” said Dr. Ryan. “His experience provides him with a distinct perspective in understanding the different seats and the resources necessary for training and increased collaboration. We believe his experience will be invaluable in helping us overcome the greater challenges facing our parishes and the diocese.”

The SJEC is located at Dowling Catholic High School while focusing its efforts on serving 23 parishes and the broader Catholic community of Des Moines. The primary focus of the center is to coordinate educational development for current and future parish employees, to provide adult faith formation programming, and to serve as a unifying element between the parishes, Catholic schools and Catholic families.

“I'm really excited to bring my experience in parish, diocesan and national church leadership work to the role of ministry director and in service to the parishes that are a part of the SJEC,” said Quinlan. “A particular focus I'll bring is supporting parents in their faith development, so that they can better foster a deep and vibrant Catholic faith in their families.  A joy-filled relationship with God is at the center of my life and I know what a blessing Catholic faith can be. I can't wait to start building relationships and working collaboratively to further the mission of Jesus Christ and Catholic faith throughout the region. And it's wonderful being associated with such an outstanding Catholic institution as Dowling Catholic. My wife, Kristi, and I and our two little boys are eager to become part of the Catholic community in the Des Moines area.”

Quinlan holds a B.S. in Business Administration from DePaul University in Chicago and a Master of Divinity from the University of St. Mary of the Lake in Mundelein, Illinois.