January 12, 2015 — Jesuit Father Thomas M. Simisky has been appointed the next president of Fairfield College Preparatory School in Connecticut. Fr. Simisky will begin as president on July 1, succeeding current President Jesuit Father John J. Hanwell, who has been named to a senior position in the Jesuits’ USA Northeast Province office.
Fr. Simisky, who was ordained in June 2014, currently teaches Spanish at Fairfield Prep and also celebrates Sunday Mass in Spanish at St. Charles Borromeo parish in Bridgeport, Connecticut, where many Prep students volunteer.
"Fairfield Prep is a school committed to excellence, knowing that with opportunity comes responsibility,” said Fr. Simisky. “We form leaders who will engage the world from a core of faith and justice. Being at Fairfield Prep allows me to share my love for Ignatian spirituality and secondary education, combined with a missionary spirit that finds creative ways to express itself."
Originally from Massachusetts, Fr. Simisky graduated from St. John's High School in Shrewsbury, Massachusetts, and Assumption College in Worcester, Massachusetts, with a degree in politics. He served as an artillery officer in the Marine Corps in the Persian Gulf and Western Pacific. He later was a district sales manager for an industrial manufacturer before returning to school and earning a master’s degree in economics from Boston College, where he first met the Jesuits and experienced Ignatian spirituality.
Fr. Simisky has lived in Jamaica, Bolivia, Chile, Russia and Kyrgyzstan; he speaks Spanish and Russian. Additionally, he received a degree in philosophy from the Universidad Alberto Hurtado in Chile, as well as master’s degrees in divinity and theology from Boston College. He previously worked at Cheverus High School in Maine, Boston College High School and Catholic Memorial School in Boston. He has been a member of the Cheverus High School Board of Trustees for the past five years.
“I’m delighted that Fr. Simisky will become my successor in leading our great school,” said Fr. Hanwell. “Prep has already been blessed by his wonderful presence among us this year. He is a very fine Jesuit priest who will bring his many gifts in maintaining our important Jesuit, Catholic mission in the years to come. I can only hope that he will be as happy at Prep as I have been these last nine years.” [Source: Fairfield College Preparatory School]