Ted Penton, S.J., is the Secretary of the Office of Justice and Ecology at the Jesuit Conference of Canada and the United States.
Born and raised in Ottawa, Canada, Penton earned a bachelor’s degree at the University of Ottawa and a master’s degree at Penn State in philosophy. Eager to step out of the classroom and work more directly with people on the margins of society, he first met the Jesuits via the Jesuit Volunteer Corps (JVC).
Through JVC, Penton volunteered for the Farmworker Unit of Legal Aid of North Carolina in 2000-01, leading outreach to migrant workers across the state to educate them about their rights. Inspired by this work to study law, he went on to complete a J.D. at Harvard Law School.
Following a brief career with the Human Rights Law Section of the Department of Justice in Ottawa, Penton entered the Society of Jesus in Canada in 2009. After completing his first two years of theology studies, he worked for three years for the Ignatian Spirituality Project, a network of volunteers who offer retreats across the United States and Canada for men and women experiencing homelessness and in recovery from addiction. Penton recently finished his theology studies (M.Div., S.T.B., S.T.M.) at Regis College in Toronto and was ordained a deacon in May 2018.