September 19, 2014

New president named for Indianapolis West Deanery Unified Catholic Schools

Criterion staff report

Dr. Joseph Hamann has been selected as the new president of the Indianapolis West Deanery Unified Catholic Schools, which includes Cardinal Ritter Jr./Sr. High School and St. Michael-St. Gabriel the Archangel Elementary School.

A longtime teacher, board member and advocate of Catholic schools, Hamann began his first day as president on Sept. 15.

The archdiocese announced his appointment in a Sept. 10 letter to “families and friends of the West Deanery Unified Catholic Schools.”

“Dr. Hamann is a practicing Catholic who is passionate about quality Catholic education and brings a wealth of business experience to this role,” noted the letter, which was signed by Gina Fleming, the archdiocese’s superintendent of Catholic schools, Kelli Johnson, school board president of the West Deanery Unified Catholic Schools, and Father Todd Goodson, pastor of St. Monica Parish in Indianapolis and dean of the Indianapolis West Deanery.

An Illinois resident, Hamann earned both his bachelor’s and doctoral degrees from Indiana University.

“For 11 years, Dr. Hamann served as an active member of the board for Marian Catholic High School in Chicago Heights,” the letter stated. “He was integral in setting policies, providing support to administration, and overseeing the implementation of the stated school mission. He also served as an advocate for institutional advancement and enrollment gains.”

Professionally, he has owned and operated a family practice in general optometry in the Chicago area since 1986.

“He also served as both an adjunct algebra instructor at Purdue University, Calumet campus, and a math teacher at Marian Catholic High School,” the letter noted.

“He is currently enrolled in the Master of Arts in Education program at Dominican University [in River Forest, Ill.], where he is participating in a curriculum and instruction program with an emphasis in educational leadership. His intent is to continue classes at Marian University in Indianapolis.”

Previously married for 21 years, Hamann is a widower and a father of two daughters. He was scheduled to be officially introduced to the West Deanery community during Cardinal Ritter’s Annual Fund Dinner on Sept. 18. †

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