WASHINGTON — After a national search, the Franciscan Action Network has a new executive director.
Patrick Carolan comes to FAN from the Diocese of Bridgeport, Conn., where he was manager of advancement/development for the Stamford Catholic Schoolsin southwestern Connecticut. He has a varied background that includes working for the state of Connecticut as president of the employees union, as an executive for a Medicaid managed care company, and as a “stay-at-home dad.” He worships at St. James Parish in Stratford, where he developed faith formation and social justice programs.
“My life and spiritual experiences have taken me on an interesting journey,” said the father of four, including two adopted foster children. “I’m humbled and excited by the opportunity at the Franciscan Action Network.”
FAN Board of Directors president Sr. Margaret Mary Kimmins, OSF, said Carolan is a good fit. “After conducting an extensive national search, the board is pleased to bring Mr. Carolan, who has a wealth of experience in administration, public policy, leadership and fundraising — combined with a strong Catholic faith tradition and a Franciscan heart — on board.”
Active With His Church
“I work with my own faith community, St James in Stratford, as director of our Journey of Discipleship program. JOD is a process to help us deepen our relationship with God and to help us become the transforming presence of God, in our daily life, through Action. As part of JOD, we gather for study and then follow up with action. It allows me to combine faith formation with social justice,” he said.
While working for the Stamford Catholic School System, he developed and implemented a short- and long-term strategy to keep the schools financially stable. He has also served on several public policy boards and commissions in Connecticut and other areas of the United States.
“My experience has included helping to develop an interfaith organization in Connecticut. We currently have more 30 different faith based communities representing Christian, Jewish and Muslim traditions,” he said.
Carolan replaces Fr. Larry Janezic, OFM, of Sacred Heart Province, who has served as FAN’s interim executive director since early 2010.
Appreciation for Fr. Larry Janezic
Sister Margaret Mary thanked Fr. Larry, who has returned to parish work in Indianapolis, Ind. “Fr. Larry helped FAN grow to a nationally recognized action network. We are sorry to see him leave and wish him God’s peace,” she said.
Fr. Larry said: “I left parish work 12 years ago to direct Franciscan Outreach in Chicago for nine years. The combination of directing homeless services in Chicago and directing an effort to develop a network for advocacy at FAN has been a rich experience in the ministry of social outreach within the church in the Franciscan style, with all of its joys and challenges.” A note from Fr. Larry appeared in a recent e-mail from FAN.
Carolan, who has already started at FAN, will relocate from Connecticut to the greater Washington, D.C., area. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 202-527-7575.