De La Salle Christian Brothers at Lewis University

De La Salle Statue

Lewis University is sponsored by the De La Salle Christian Brothers, an international Roman Catholic Institute dedicated to education and founded by Saint John Baptist de La Salle, patron saint of educators. De La Salle transformed education by developing “a spirituality of teaching and learning” and opening his schools to students regardless of social class, particularly the poor and the underserved. Today, the Brothers work together with 84,000 men and women teachers and numerous lay partners in sponsoring 1,000 educational centers in 80 countries throughout the world as part of the Lasallian network. There are nearly 100 schools and ministries throughout the United States and Canada.

Signum Fidei

In 1960, the De La Salle Christian Brothers assumed the administration of Lewis College and became the sponsors, at the invitation of Bishop Martin D. McNamara of the Diocese of Joliet. Continuing the vision of their founder, Saint John Baptist de La Salle, they brought a new tradition of Lasallian values to an active partnership with the dedicated faculty, staff and administrators already on campus.

The first group of seven founding Brothers combined their highly dedicated, professional and enthusiastic efforts at Lewis with those of their colleagues, forming a strong Lasallian partnership and inaugurating a comprehensive program of improvements. Among these initiatives were securing nationally-recognized accreditation and construction of new facilities which led to significant growth. Since those beginnings, more than 110 Brothers have served the students at Lewis University at various times.

More than 20 Christian Brothers currently serve the University in positions such as professors, administrators, librarians, counselors, university ministers, and archivists. In addition, eight are members of the University’s Board of Trustees. The Brothers continue to dedicate themselves to all aspects of university life, thus enhancing the overall quality and the commitment to fidelity, service and social justice.

The Official Name

The official name of the Brothers’ Congregation is the Institute of the Brothers of the Christian Schools. To retain the connection with their founder, Saint John Baptist de La Salle, the Brothers call themselves De La Salle Christian Brothers in ordinary conversation. The initials FSC, for Fratres Scholarum Christianarum, the Latin name of the congregation, are placed at the end of each Brother’s name. Pope Benedict XIII granted approval of the Institute in 1725. However, the educational mission of the Brothers began when De La Salle formed a community of dedicated teachers to provide a human and Christian education to young people, especially the poor and the disadvantaged. He also encouraged spirituality, centered on mission, and promoted teaching as a vocation, oriented to the students’ overall development. The Brothers have been transforming lives through Lasallian education since 1680, and, for most of those years, as partners with their dedicated Lasallian Associates.

Christian Brothers at Lewis University

Br. John Blease, FSC
Brother John Blease, FSC

a Lewis alumnus, returned to campus in 2016 to assist in the Center for Academic Success & Enrichment (CASE), focusing on student retention and support. A teacher in the Chicago area at St. Patrick High School, De La Salle Institute and Saint Joseph High School early in his career, Brother John served as a translator of Spanish to English and Italian to English for 21 years at the Christian Brothers Generalate (national headquarters of the Christian Brothers), providing written translation as well as simultaneous translation. He is joining the Lewis staff after a year’s sabbatical. His hobbies include reading, walking, foreign travel and computers.

Br. Tom Dupre, FSC
Brother Thomas Dupré, FSC

An Associate Professor in the Computer and Mathematical Sciences Department, he holds a B.A. from Christian Brothers University and an M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of Illinois. Brother Thomas was born in Evanston, Ill. A consistent advocate for social justice, he is active in the University’s Catholic Relief Service Corps Ambassadors program which is committed to assisting the poor and vulnerable by promoting social justice and peace. Among many other initiatives, CRSC Ambassadors regularly write letters that ask for peaceful and just action to assist victims of injustice. Reading, camping, and working with CRSC are among his interests.

Br. Brian Dybowski, FSC
Brother Brian Dybowski, FSC

began teaching at Lewis University-Albuquerque in the Fall of 2009 after 44 years of teaching and administration at the College of Santa Fe in New Mexico. He has applied his earned doctorates in Philosophy and Psychology to teach both subjects. Brother Brian earlier established a Psychology program and taught in the Philosophy program at the College of Santa Fe. He also initiated the Santa Fe Institute for Spirituality, which continues to this day, offering summer and year-long courses on the Church Fathers (St. Augustine, St. Thomas, St. Catherine of Siena, St. Thomas Aquinas, etc.) and other spiritual masters, mostly, but not exclusively Catholic.

Br. Christopher Ford, FSC
Brother Christopher Ford, FSC

a 1989 Lewis alumnus, works in the Writing Center, tutoring and mentoring students. He has earned a B.A. from Divine Word College, a second B.A. from Lewis University, and an M.A. from Saint Louis University. He is A.B.D. for a doctorate in rhetoric and professional communication from New Mexico State University. As a scholar, Brother Chris is interested in exploring the intersection of scientific and religious discourses, as well as emerging rhetorical issues in popular culture.

Br. Chuck Gregor, FSC
Brother Chuck Gregor, FSC

joins the staff at Lewis University as an Instructional Technology Specialist in the College of Education and Social Sciences after 40 years as a teacher, administrator, Lasallian animator and technology expert. He will continue to teach at Montini Catholic High School while also working at Lewis. A graduate of Christian Brothers College, the Maryland Institute College of Art and Fontbonne University, he holds a master’s degree in Computers in Education, a master’s of Fine Arts in Art Education and a bachelor’s degree in Humanities. His previous experience includes eight years at Archbishop O’Hara High School in Kansas City, Mo. Internationally, he was founding principal of Mwangaza College in Nakuru, Kenya from 1991-1996. His hobbies include cooking and art.

Br. Peter Hannon, FSC
Brother Peter Hannon, FSC

taught Culture and Civilization courses during summer sessions for many years prior to joining the History Department at Lewis in 2012. He currently is an Assistant Professor of History. He has a B.A. from Lewis University, an M.A. from De Paul University in History and an M.A. from Catholic University of America in International Political Science. A native of Chicago, he formerly taught at St. Joseph High School, De La Salle High School in Chicago, and Christian Brothers College High School in St. Louis. A talented and avid photographer, Brother Peter has worked with students to establish a Photography Club as a student organization. Among his interests, Brother Peter includes sports, world travel, history and international politics.

Br. Philip Johnson, FSC
Brother Philip Johnson, FSC

returned to Lewis in 2014 after a one-year leave from the University, where he served as Sub-Director of Novices at the Regional Novitiate for the De La Salle Christian Brothers in Napa, California. Previously, he had served as Director of University Ministry at Lewis for 10 years, and then taught and served as Coordinator for Special Projects for the Office of Mission and Identity during the 2012-2013 academic year. Now a member of the staff in the Office of Mission and Identity, Brother Philip has taught English and English as a Second Language, assisted with Writing Placement, mentored students in the Bridge Program and served as Director of Student Activities. Born in Chicago, he holds a B.A. from Christian Brothers University, and an M.Ed. from Wayne State University. Brother Philip enjoys traveling to warm places with water, reading, and walking.

Br. David Kuebler, FSC
Brother David Kuebler, FSC

a native of Lockport, Ill., serves as a Reference Librarian at Lewis University. He earned a B.A. from Christian Brothers University, an M.A. from the University of Memphis, and an M.A.L.S. from Dominican University. His leisure activities...friends.

Br. Raphael Mascari, FSC
Brother Raphael Mascari, FSC

was born in Chicago. He is an Associate Professor in the Computer and Mathematical Sciences Department. He holds a B.A. from Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota and an M.A. from St. Louis University. In his leisure time, Brother Raphael enjoys following sports, reading and classical music.

Br. Raymond McManaman, FSC
Brother Raymond McManaman, FSC

one of the seven original Brothers to arrive at Lewis in 1960, is a Professor in the Theology Department. A native of Waukegan, Ill., he obtained a B.A. and an M.A. from Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota, an M.A. from Seattle University, a D.Min. from the Aquinas Institute of Theology, and an S.T.D. from San Francisco Theological Seminary. Brother Raymond enjoys reading, traveling and following Notre Dame football, the Chicago White Sox, and the Lewis athletic teams, especially the Lewis baseball team.

Br. Donald Mouton, FSC
Brother Donald C. Mouton, FSC

received an honorary doctoral degree in 2009 at Lewis University for his distinguished career at the College of Santa Fe, including a dynamic presidency from 1982 to 1987, and to recognize his success in formation and as a lecturer at the Buttimer Institute and other venues in various parts of the world. A frequent writer on Lasallian Studies, he also served as Visitor of the New Orleans-Santa Fe District from 1990-1996. Brother Donald now is a part-time faculty member at Lewis University-Albuquerque. He also is a faculty member in Religion Studies at the Santa Fe University of Art and Design (on the campus of the former College of Santa Fe). A native of Louisiana, he earned a B.A. from the College of Santa Fe and a doctorate in Sacred Theology at the Catholic University of Paris.

Br. Lawrence Oelschlegel, FSC
Brother Lawrence Oelschlegel, FSC

is a Professor of English. He also served as an Assistant Dean in the College of Aviation, Science and Technology for more than 10 years. Born in Philadelphia, he earned a B.A. from La Salle University, an M.A. from the University of Maryland, an M.A.T. from Villanova University, and a Ph.D. from the University of Maryland. Among his other interests, Brother Lawrence enjoys cooking, reading, hiking, traveling, doing research in literature and the Bible, and visiting museums, botanical gardens, and state capitols.

Br. Pierre St.Raymond, FSC
Brother Pierre St. Raymond, FSC

is a Professor of Chemistry and a native of New Orleans, La. He has taught in the Chemistry Department and chaired the department for many years. He also serves as Director of Emerging Scientists in First Year Chemistry, a post that was originated in 2012. Brother Pierre has a B.S. from the College of Santa Fe and a Ph.D. from the University of Maryland. For his leisure times, Brother Pierre likes to attend current movies.

Br. Robert Veselsky, FSC
Brother Robert Veselsky, FSC

a Lewis alumnus, returned to his alma mater in 2012 as an Associate, working part-time in University Ministry, encouraging young men and women to consider the “Consecrated Life.” He previously was a staff member at Lewis in University Ministry for nearly 10 years in the 1990s, serving as a University Minister for Mission Effectiveness and assisting in Peer Ministry and with freshman students in First Year Experience. Brother Rob formerly was a Director of Campus Ministry at Christian Brothers University. Along with his B.A. in Sociology from Lewis University, he holds a Master’s degree in Religious Education from St. Mary’s University in Minnesota and a Master’s in Pastoral Ministry from Loyola University Chicago. Brother Rob’s leisurely interests include reading ... mostly biographies, long walks, and coffee house chats with friends!

Br. John Vietoris, FSC
Brother John Vietoris, FSC

is an alumnus of Lewis University and a native of Joliet. An Associate Professor of History and Director of the Culture and Civilization Program, he teaches upper division history courses, ranging from the Civil War to Modern Europe. He holds a B.A. from Lewis, an M.A. from the University of Notre Dame and a Ph.D. from Marquette University. Prior to joining the faculty at Lewis, Brother John taught at St. Paul High School and St. Patrick High School in Chicago. He also served as Assistant Principal at St. Patrick’s and Principal of Pacelli High School in Stevens Point, Wis. Brother John’s personal interests include hiking, reading, travel, classical music and opera.

Additional Brothers on Campus

Br. Joseph Martin, FSC
Brother Joseph Martin, FSC

retired as Special Assistant to the President in May 2017. Previously he served as Mission and Planning Coordinator, Assistant to the President and Coordinator of Special Projects. He is also Executive Assistant to the Provincial at the Midwest District Office in Burr Ridge, a position he has held since 2001. Born and raised in Detroit, Mich., he earned a B.A. from Walsh University, an M.Ed. from St. Michael’s College, an M.A. from Holy Names University, and a D.Min. from the Graduate Theological Foundation in Donaldson, Ind. His hobbies include reading, traveling, movies, writing, publishing and generational history.

B. Jose Martin Montoya Dura, FSC
Brother José Martin Montoya Durà, FSC

is the founder and coordinator of the International Lasallian Institute for Sustainability (ILIS). Br. Martin comes to the United States from Valencia and Mallorca in Spain with a Doctorate in pedagogical actions and community development. He has also studied environmental sciences, agricultural engineering, business, and religious studies. He has promoted several sustainable development projects in different parts of the world, in order to understand better how different lifestyles and cultures impact sustainability.

President Emeritus of Lewis University

Br. James Gaffney, FSC
Brother James Gaffney, FSC, President Emeritus

has served Lewis for more than forty years, including twenty-eight as President, prior to retiring June 30, 2016.  He has been part of the University community since the early 1970s as a faculty member, Provincial for the Christian Brothers who sponsor Lewis University, Chair of the Board of Trustees for ten years, and President. During his years as President, the University experienced a remarkable transformation, achieving national ranking for various educational programs; adding dozens of programs – both graduate and undergraduate – including two doctoral degrees; significantly expanding the main campus in Romeoville and establishing sites in the Chicagoland area and in Albuquerque, New Mexico.  During his tenure, enrollment more than tripled with the number of students rising to nearly 7,000.  He also led successful programs to infuse the Catholic and Lasallian Mission into all aspects of University life; and built a spirit of Association among faculty, staff and administrators that has helped to develop a collaborative approach in all teaching, learning and service undertakings.

He has received many honors for his leadership, including the Pro Ecclesiae et Pontifice Medallion from the Vatican, numerous honorary degrees, and various community accolades. A native Chicagoan, Brother James holds a B.A. and an M.Ed. from Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota, an M.A. from Manhattan College, and a D.Min. in Pastoral Theology from the University of St. Mary of the Lake in Mundelein, Ill. The Board of Trustees has named Brother James President Emeritus in recognition of his dedication and service to Lewis University.

Christian Brothers Who Serve as Members of the Lewis University Board of Trustees:
  • Brother Dominic Ehrmantraut, FSC
    Christian Brothers University
    Vice President

  • Brother David Galinski, FSC
    Saint Patrick High School

  • Brother Ernest Miller, FSC
    LaSalle University
    Vice President for Mission

  • Brother Michael Quirk, FSC
    Christian Brothers Services

  • Brother Joseph Saurbier, FSC
    Christian Brothers of the Midwest
    Director of Administration and Operations