News Item

McGowan Hall to be named in honor of former Bellarmine president

Oct 10, 2016

Bellarmine University’s recently constructed campus center facing Newburg Road will be renamed Joseph J. McGowan, Jr. Hall to honor the university’s third president, who died in March.

The building’s renaming will become official once a second phase of work is completed on the building’s middle and top floors, creating additional classroom and faculty office space. The name, approved by Bellarmine’s board of trustees, was announced at Friday night’s annual Knight of Knights black-tie event.

McGowan served as Bellarmine’s president from 1990 until 2016, leading a transformation of the college’s campus, tripling the number of buildings and nearly doubling enrollment by adding new academic programs and hiring additional faculty. In 2000, Bellarmine College became Bellarmine University, reflecting the university’s continued growth and increased focus on graduate education. Learn more about McGowan's life.

In 2005, he launched Vision 2020, a plan to make Bellarmine the premier independent Catholic university in the south, and the leading private university in Kentucky and the region. McGowan’s final accomplishment under Vision 2020 is the construction of the building that will soon bear his name.

“McGowan Hall is a fitting tribute to Bellarmine’s longest-serving president and my dear friend, Jay McGowan,” said Dr. Doris Tegart, Bellarmine’s interim president. “Jay and Maureen viewed Centro as a transformative space that would reshape how people viewed our campus, so it feels very deserved that he will be commemorated there, in the first building visitors encounter when entering our campus.”

McGowan Hall will house Bellarmine’s welcome center, undergraduate and graduate admissions offices, career development center, the W. Fielding Rubel School of Business, the Institute for Advanced Analytics, classrooms and faculty offices. It is part of a larger complex, named Centro, that includes Horrigan Hall and Treece Hall.

Learn more about plans and fundraising for McGowan Hall.

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