Chesterton Academy Appoints Dr. Matt Gerlach as New Headmaster

Dear Chesterton Academy families and community,

We are pleased and excited to announce that Dr. Matt Gerlach has been selected to serve as our new headmaster beginning this summer.

A native of the Twin Cities, Dr. Gerlach will be relocating from Winona with his wife and youngest daughter where he currently serves as inaugural Vice President for Character, Virtue & Ethics at Saint Mary’s University. Dr. Gerlach holds a Ph.D. in Theology from Marquette University, as well as a Master of Arts in Theology and a Bachelor of Arts in Catholic Studies and Philosophy – both from the University of St Thomas, St. Paul, MN.

Dr. Gerlach has a distinguished career serving in Catholic educational leadership positions in parish, high school, university, and seminary settings. At the University of Mary, he launched the Catholic Studies Program and, as Administrative Chair of University-Wide Programs, oversaw Catholic Studies, a new Honors Program with a classical emphasis, the Rome Campus and other Global Studies programs, and Liberal Arts Core.

Instrumental to the Catholic renewal efforts at U-Mary (and still active in the Catholic Studies movement today), he went on as a Dean at Sacred Heart Major Seminary, Detroit, MI to lead the intellectual, spiritual, moral, and apostolic formation for lay adult students serving in parish, diocesan, and other ministries.

While bringing students these faith-filled programs, Dr. Gerlach considers himself first and foremost a teacher who inspires the pursuit of faith, wisdom, and virtue. Over the past 25 years, he has taught Theology, Catholic Studies, or other subjects at Holy Family Catholic High School, UST, U-Mary, and Sacred Heart Major Seminary. 

In all his roles, Dr. Gerlach has a demonstrated track-record of fostering a Christ-centered educational environment, grounded in the tradition of Catholic Liberal Education, focused on forming students of all ages to live as mature, joyful disciples equipped to transform our culture for Christ.

Dr. Gerlach’s start date and other details are still being finalized. In the meantime, we continue to be very grateful for Mr. Christopher Olley who will continue to serve as headmaster until the formal transition of responsibility to Dr. Gerlach.

Please warmly welcome and pray for Dr. Gerlach and his family that they enjoy a smooth transition. Please also continue to pray for Mr. Christopher Olley as he looks forward to retirement.

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