Elizabeth Barr Assistant to the Principal
Ms. Barr will assist in the daily operations of the school and offer administrative support to Principal Michael Gomez. She is a graduate of Villanova University (B.A. Human Services, Minor in Psychology and Sociology, 2010). During her time at Villanova, she was active in ministry and made a lifelong commitment to service.
Her experience in the Cristo Rey Network extends back to a year of volunteer service she gave after graduation with the Lasallian Volunteers. During the 2010-2011 school year, she served as Campus Minister/ Student Activities Director at De La Salle North Catholic High School, a Cristo Rey school in Portland, Oregon.
Elizabeth has lived all her life in the Greater Philadelphia area and has been in Catholic education since she was five, and is excited to be part of the new possibilities for Catholic education that Cristo Rey offers in her hometown.
Sister Nancy Bradbury, IHM Tutoring Coordinator
Sister Nancy was born and raised in south Philadelphia to a loving familt. She was blassed to attend Mount Carmel Cathloic School and J.W. Hallahan High School. There she met the Sisters, Servents of the Immaculate Heart of Mary. With their inspiration and a deep love of God, Sister Nancy decided to give her life to the service of God and God's people.
Her service to Catholic Education spans elementary, middle, and high schools in urban and suburban parishes and beyond in the countless families and friends met along the journey. She earned a Master's degree in Mathematics from the University of New Hampshire. Her summers were spent tending to the needs of the poor in Philadelphia and Appalachia, teaching and caring for her aging sisters in Camilla Hall. When presented with the opportunity to serve Cristo Rey, she was all too willing as she firmly believes its model "We Believe. We Dream. We Lead. We Serve." to be a reflection of the Gospel.
Suni Blackwell Dean of Students
Mr. Blackwell is responsible for creating and leading the implementation of the school’s discipline system. His focus is maintaining policies, procedures, and individual records on student discipline and attendance. Mr. Blackwell is also the Head Boy’s Basketball Coach and serves on the Athletic Committee.
Mr. Blackwell was the School/Community Climate Manager and Anti-Bullying Compliance Officer from 2010 – 2012 for the Chester-Upland School District. There, his main responsibilities were supervising, coordinating, and supporting all external programs for the district. In addition, he interfaced with governmental agencies and community organizations to reduce out-of-school student conflicts that impact the operations of district schools, and worked with internal Climate Managers and School Police Officers to develop and maintain a safe school corridor for district schools. Blackwell also served as Head JV Boys Basketball Coach and Assistant Coach on the Chester High School Boys Basketball team that went 32-0 and won the 2012 Pennsylvania AAAA District 1 and State Championships.
Blackwell is a graduate of West Chester University of Pennsylvania (B.S. Liberal Studies, Minors in Elementary and Secondary Education, 2003) and Temple University (M.Ed. Sport Administration and Recreation Management, 2007).
Christina D’Emma English Teacher
Ms. D’Emma is inspired by learning with her students and colleagues. She is moved by the mission of the Cristo Rey network and is thrilled to be a part of the CRPHS community. She was a teacher coach for AmeriCorps volunteers in the Response-Ability program, a ministry of the Sisters of the Holy Child Jesus. Prior to that she taught ninth and tenth grade English at her alma mater, Mount Saint Mary Academy in Watchung, NJ. She was a seventh and eighth grade Language Arts and Religion teacher at St. Denis School in Havertown, PA, and at the Gesu School in Philadelphia, PA, beginning her career as a Response-Ability volunteer. Currently, she serves on the board of the McNamee Scholars Program.
Ms. D’Emma is a graduate of Rosemont College, B.A. English, 1999, M.Ed. Mid-level Education, 2002, and Villanova University, M.A., English, 2010.
Robert Fabiszewski Director of the Work-Study Program
Mr. Fabiszewski has 29 years of commercial real estate experience with both debt and equity investments. Retired in 2011 from TRECAP Partners, LLC, he now serves on its Board of Directors, and formerly its Executive and Investment Committees, after founding the company's real estate investment advisory business under predecessor companies Capmark Investments, LLP, GMAC Institutional Advisors and GMAC Commercial Mortgage Corporation in 1996. He developed and directed the company’s real estate private equity business model (approximately $5 billion in assets under management and supervision) and portfolio and related asset management activities on behalf of third-party investors. Mr. Fabiszewski directed the Real Estate Equity Group’s business operations, strategic planning, relationships with investor clients and property acquisition/joint venture programs with existing and new operating partners. From 1982 to 1996, Mr. Fabiszewski was responsible for the acquisition and underwriting of real estate investments for The Penn Mutual Life Insurance Company and developed its national origination network.
Mr. Fabiszewski is a graduate of La Salle University (B.A. Finance), is a retired member of the Pension Real Estate Association and the National Association of Real Estate Investment Managers, and has lectured for the Mortgage Bankers Association of America on real estate finance and negotiation skills. He also currently serves on the boards of area education-based non-profit organizations.
Sister Regina Flanigan, IHM School Administration
Sister Regina serves in School Administration for Cristo Rey Philadelphia High School with responsibilities that include counseling, student attendance, family contacts and assistance to the Admissions Office. She is a member of the Congregation of the Sisters, Servants of the Immaculate Heart of Mary. She also serves as an ambassador, sharing the Cristo Rey mission with students, faculty, and administrators at local grade schools and community organizations.
She holds a Master of Arts in Spanish from Millersville University and a Master of Arts in Psychology from Immaculata University. She completed additional studies at Villanova and La Salle universities, and in Madrid, Spain, Lima, Peru, and Santiago, Chile. Her most formative years were spent as a missionary at IHM apostolates in Santiago and Lima. She is conscious of the enormous potential in today's teenagers and energized by the possibilities that Cristo Rey Philadelphia will unfold for them. She believes that Philadelphia and our country need ethical, prepared, and willing young people to serve the needs of all.
Sister Regina has been the recipient of various Pro-Life awards and was honored by Pennsylvanians for Human Life as their award winner in 2004.
The daughter of Regina Murphy and Edward Flanigan, Sister has three brothers -- one Maryknoll mission priest and two medical doctors -- and a sister who holds a doctorate and serves as business professor at Montclair State University. Being a member of our Cristo Rey team is the fulfillment of years of interest in and work for the establishment of our new school.
John Glennon Jr. Assistant Principal
Mr. Glennon is responsible for the planning and preparation of the school’s academic program during the launch year. He focuses on curriculum development, staff recruitment and hiring, and the development of policies and procedures necessary for a successful start of school in August 2012.
Mr. Glennon was the Chief of Staff of Georgetown Preparatory School from 2001 – 2010 where he served as a senior advisor to the president, assisting with strategic planning, construction oversight, and the day-to-day operations of the nation’s oldest Jesuit high school. He has also worked as a principal intern at TechBoston Academy, a pilot school in the Boston Public School System, and as an associate at a small venture capital firm.
Mr. Glennon is a graduate of Georgetown University (B.A. Government, Minor in Economics, 1999). He holds an Ed.M. in School Leadership from Harvard University’s Graduate School of Education and a Master of Public Policy degree with a concentration in Education, Social, and Family Policy from Georgetown University.
Nancy C. Green Director of Development
Ms. Green is responsible for all aspects of fundraising for Cristo Rey Philadelphia High School. She has 28 years of non-profit fundraising experience, primarily with social justice organizations. Particularly relevant are her six years as the first full-time development director for White-Williams Scholars, which recently merged with Philadelphia Futures and supports college-bound public high school students from low-income families. She is well versed in the challenges faced by students from families of modest means and is passionate about the importance of education in changing the trajectory of their lives.
Ms. Green is a member of the scholarship committee of the Greater Philadelphia Chapter of the Association of Fundraising Professionals and serves on the development committee of The Birth Center in Bryn Mawr, PA. She is a Philadelphia native and mother of three.
Wilhelmina Green Coordinator of Pathways Program
As Coordinator of the Pathways Program for Cristo Rey Philadelphia High School, Mrs. Green will have the opportunity to work alongside University Partners in the creation and implementation of enrichment and social programs between Cristo Rey Philadelphia High School and local colleges and universities.
Mrs. Green is a graduate of Spelman College (B.A. Sociology, Minor in Religion, 2000). Prior to joining the Cristo Rey Philadelphia family, Mrs. Green worked for many years in child welfare before moving onto the field of higher education. It was at the Pennsylvania State University that she had the opportunity to work directly with Philadelphia high school students in making their dream of college admission a reality. From there, she and her family relocated to North Carolina where she served as a Girl Scout Troop Leader and the Secretary of the Parent Teacher Association of Southwest Elementary School in Durham, North Carolina. From there, Mrs. Green and her husband took a position as Houseparents at the Milton Hershey School where they provided oversight, direction and leadership for boarding school students deriving from diverse, low-income and at-risk backgrounds. Mrs. Green is proud to say that in every position she has always stressed the importance of education to young people while encouraging them to seek higher education. After spending a few years away from Philadelphia, Mrs. Green is excited about returning to the city she calls home with her husband Robert and daughters, Sonia and Monica.
Michael Gomez Principal
Dr. Gomez is principal of Cristo Rey Philadelphia High School. He previously served as principal of St. Joseph’s Preparatory School where he had direct responsibility for the daily operations and educational development of the school since his appointment in July of 2006. Prior to that he was the Assistant Principal for Student Affairs at Creighton Preparatory School in Omaha, NE. He began his career in education as a teacher, director, and coach at his alma mater, St. Peter’s Preparatory School, in Jersey City, NJ. He is a member of the Jesuit Secondary Education Association Board of Directors and a Trustee at St. Peter’s Preparatory School.
Dr. Gomez is a graduate of Providence College (B.A. English, 1995) and Binghamton University (M.A. English Literature, 1997). He also holds a Master of Arts in Private School Administration from Teachers College, Klingenstein Center at Columbia University and a Doctor of Education degree from the University of Pennsylvania (Ed.D., 2012). Michael and his wife, Sarah, are the proud parents of Tessa and Peter.
Matthew Holtshouser ACESJU Teaching Fellow, English
Mr. Holtshouser will assist the founding member of the English Department in planning and conducting lessons for 9th grade students. As a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania, Mr. Holtshouser will work to earn a Masters of Science in Education from St. Joseph’s University at the end of the two-year ACESJU Teaching Fellows program. Previously, in his undergraduate career at UPenn, Mr. Holtshouser received a B.A. in English and completed a minor in Urban Education with an emphasis on Research, Practice, and Policy.
Mr. Holtshouser brings two summers worth of education-related work experience: one as a 7th and 8th grade Writing and Social Studies teacher at Breakthrough of Greater Philadelphia, and another as a research intern for the education consulting firm Research For Action. Mr. Holtshouser plans to contribute time and energy into CRPHS Athletics and extracurricular activities. He is an avid soccer player, former high school Cross Country runner, and he enjoyed pitching for UPenn’s Division I baseball team. He is a proud native of St. Louis, MO, but has enjoyed living in Philadelphia for the past four years and looks forward to the next two years as a member of the CRPHS family.
Marlene Lally Business Manager
Mrs. Lally graduated from La Salle University in 1984 with Bachelor of Science degrees in both Finance and Marketing. She obtained her Wilson Reading Specialist certification in 2002 and still tutors children with reading challenges. Marlene brings over 20 years experience in business management and administration with non-profit organizations -- mostly small, independent schools in the Philadelphia area. Most recently she was operations manager of the Susan G. Komen Philadelphia Affiliate before joining the Cristo Rey Philadelphia team.
Mrs. Lally's family is completely engrossed in the Jesuit tradition. Her husband Chris is a graduate of St. Peter's Preparatory School in Jersey City, NJ. Her twins Christopher and Michelle graduated from The College of the Holy Cross in Massachusetts and Loyola University in Maryland, respectively.
John R. McConnell Founder and President
Mr. McConnell is the head of the school’s leadership team and represents Cristo Rey to the Philadelphia community. He retired as a partner at the management consulting firm Deloitte in order to lead the founding of Cristo Rey Philadelphia High School. He has served as Chairman of the Board at St. Joseph's Prep and is an active parishioner at St. Katherine of Siena in Wayne, PA.
Mr. McConnell is a graduate of St. Joseph’s Prep (1970) and Georgetown University (B.S. B.A., 1974). He earned a Master in Business Administration degree from the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School in 1982. A Philadelphia native and father of four, he lives with his wife, Gwen, in St. Davids, PA.
Joe Mirarchi Faculty, Math
Mr. Mirarchi is a Magna Cum Laude graduate of Saint Joseph’s University. He earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Management. Prior to joining the Cristo Rey team, Mr. Mirarchi spent two years in San Antonio, Texas, teaching Algebra 1 and coaching soccer at Burbank High School. Mr. Mirarchi adamantly believes that every student has the right to an excellent education.
Sean P. Murray Faculty, Theology
Mr. Murray is a graduate of the University of Scranton, where he first learned of Jesuit spirituality and where he met his wife and fellow graduate, Gina. They were married in 2009 in Philadelphia, where they both live and work. Sean comes to Cristo Rey Philadelphia having taught Theology for 5 years in New Jersey. Gina is a Pediatrician and currently works in Torresdale, PA. They are members of Contemplative Leaders in Action, run by the Jesuit Collaborative, an adult faith-sharing and leadership training program. They are both passionate about local and global health, education, and social justice. They live in Philadelphia.
Flannery O’Connor Director of Admissions
As head of Cristo Rey Philadelphia’s admissions department, Ms. O’Connor has the pleasure of speaking to young people of Philadelphia and their families about the school, guiding them through the admissions process, and directing a team of evaluators who will accept students into our freshmen class. Prior to joining the Cristo Rey team as our first full-time employee, she was a campus minister at Villanova University. She has also worked at Trinity Catholic High School in Newton, MA, as director of international student affairs and coordinator of mission and ministry. She began her career in education as a member of the Alliance for Catholic Education Program (ACE) at the University of Notre Dame. As an ACE teacher she taught fourth grade, coached, and moderated student clubs at All Saints Catholic School in Fort Worth, TX.
Ms. O’Connor is a graduate of Boston College (B.A. Theology, Minor in Philosophy, 2006) and holds a Master of Education degree from the University of Notre Dame, and a Master of Counseling with a concentration in clinical mental health from Villanova University. She is a member of the Gesu School Young Friends Committee and co-founded Philadelphia Advocates for Catholic Education, an organization that advocates for and supports Catholic schools in the city.
Jessy O'Neill Coordinator of the Work-Study Program
Ms. O’Neill is the Coordinator of the Work-Study Program; managing the transportation of our student workers and collaborating with Mr. Fabizsewski to truly make Cristo Rey Philadelphia High School The School That Works! She holds a Bachelor’s of Science in Marketing from The University of Scranton and Before joining the team at CRPHS, she was a full-time volunteer at the Cristo Rey New York High School in East Harlem.
While at Cristo Rey New York High School, Ms. O'Neill worked in the Corporate Work Study Office, taught a Junior level Catholic Social Teaching and Morality theology course, and moderated student council and the dance team. As a Northeast Philly native, she was thrilled to see a Cristo Rey school opening in Philadelphia and knew she had to get involved!
Richard Pugh Director of Campus Ministry and Student Activities
Mr. Pugh is a graduate of Saint Joseph’s University here in Philadelphia where he earned a B.A. in English and Theology and a minor in Faith-Justice Studies. Upon graduation in 2005, he served with the Jesuit Volunteer Corps where he taught at St. Ignatius School in The Bronx.
Mr. Pugh spent the next four years at St. Margaret Mary Catholic Church in Winter Park, Florida working as a full-time Youth Minister. He recently earned a M.A. in Theology from Villanova University where he also worked as a Campus Ministry Intern. Mr. Pugh is grateful for the support he receives from his fiancé, family, and friends and is excited about the possibilities at Cristo Rey Philadelphia High School.
Tracey Royo Latin Teacher
As the Latin teacher, Mrs. Royo is responsible for developing the curriculum, designing units of study, and instructing students in Latin class. Prior to joining the Cristo Rey Team, she taught Social Studies and Latin at Tunkhannock Area High School for over six years. Throughout her time in Tunkhannock, she served as the Interact Club Advisor and worked very closely with the Tunkhannock Rotary Club in order to involve students in community projects. She also participated in the National Honors Society Committee, Final Exams Committee, and Teacher in the Workplace Program. She taught Latin in the Summer Program at Scranton Preparatory School and tutored numerous students in their study of Latin.
Mrs. Royo is a magna cum laude graduate of Boston College where she received a Bachelor of Arts degree in History and Secondary Education (2005). She also holds a Master of Science degree in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Scranton (2010). Mrs. Royo holds a Pennsylvania Teaching Certification in Latin K-12 and Social Studies 7-12. A native of Scranton, Pa., Mrs. Royo recently married her husband, Marc, and relocated to Philadelphia.
Unique Saunders Admissions Coordinator
Ms. Saunders is no stranger to the Cristo Rey network, having been a part of the nation’s 2nd Cristo Rey high school. She was among the first graduating class of De La Salle North Catholic High School in Portland, Oregon in 2005. Ms. Saunders is excited to share her experience with students and is enthusiastic about guiding them through this journey.
Born and raised on the west coast, Ms. Saunders relocated to Philadelphia to join the Cristo Rey team as the Admissions Coordinator. She most recently worked for a nonprofit agency in Seattle, Washington helping families move from poverty to self-sufficiency through programs and advocacy. Prior to that, she served as the Marketing Coordinator for a nonprofit musical theatre, promoting the arts throughout the city.
Ms. Saunders is a graduate of Seattle University (B.A. Journalism, Minor: Creative Writing, 2009.) In the winter she will begin working towards a Master in Public Administration.
Sister Janice Shaw, IHM Science Teacher
Sister Janice grew up in Southampton, PA. After graduating from Bishop McDevitt High School, she entered the Congregation of the Sisters, Servants, of the Immaculate Heart of Mary. She taught in elementary and high schools in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia and the Diocese of Harrisburg. She also served as an elementary school principal. Sister Janice comes to Cristo Rey from West Catholic High School in Philadelphia, where she taught physics and chemistry.
Sister Janice is a graduate of Immaculata University (B.A. 1972, B.S. 1981) and Villanova University (M.S. 1989).
Laura Schmidt School Counselor
Mrs. Schmidt is the School Counselor for Cristo Rey Philadelphia High School. She was born and raised in a Philadelphia area suburb. Mrs. Schmidt is a graduate of Merion Mercy Academy and Villanova University. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Theology with a concentration in Ethics and a Master of Science in Secondary Educational Counseling (grades 7-12).
Prior to joining the Cristo Rey Philadelphia Team, Mrs. Schmidt was the school counselor for a Nativity/San Miguel modeled middle school in the Crown Heights neighborhood of Brooklyn, NY. She also served as a teacher to an all boys prep school in Wilmington, DE.
Anna Winter Coordinator of Marketing, Public Relations and Executive Administration
As the Coordinator of Marketing and Public Relations, Ms. Winter is responsible for all Cristo Rey Philadelphia internal and external communications, branding and community relations. Along with her responsibilities for communications, Ms. Winter assists in the daily operations of the school and is the assitant to the President. Prior to joining the Cristo Rey Philadelphia Team, she served as the Communications Coordinator at Elwyn, a multi-state nonprofit organization located in Media, PA.
Ms. Winter is a graduate of the Pennsylvania State University (B.A. Public Relations & Advertising, Minor in Business, 2010).
Meaghan Whalen Development Associate
Ms. Whalen will assist with fundraising for Cristo Rey Philadelphia High School. She has over 3 years of non-profit fundraising experience and has previously volunteered for the Cristo Rey schools in Kansas City and Houston. Prior to joining the Cristo Rey Philadelphia community, Ms. Whalen lived in Denver, CO and worked for a non-profit that helps families reach self-sufficiency.
Ms. Whalen is a graduate of Rockhurst University (B.A. Non-Profit Leadership and Political Science, 2009). Upon graduation she joined the Jesuit Volunteer Corps and volunteered in Houston with families affected by HIV or AIDS. Ms. Whalen grew up in the great state of Kansas and is a proud fan of the Kansas Jayhawks and loves Kansas City BBQ.
Kristine Zeiset Health & Fitness Instructor
Ms. Zeiset is a graduate of Eastern University (B.S. Exercise Science, Minor in Accounting, 2012). She has also invested in several classes from the Sport and Coaching minor. She has a special interest in athletics, as she was involved in sports throughout the years.
Ms. Zeiset has worked as a counselor and group instructor at a Health and Fitness camp in Vermont for girls who desire to make physical and psychological improvements to their daily habits. She has also recently invested as an intern at Bryn Mawr Hospital in the Cardiac Rehabilitation department. In addition, she has done personal training with individuals to work towards health and fitness goals. She enjoys teaching and inspiring others to develop a lifestyle full of healthy habits and recreational activities.