Br. F. Edward Coughlin, O.F.M., was posthumously conferred the honorary degree, Doctor of Humane Letters, during a Mass celebrated from the Grotto in his memory on October 10.
Br. Ed was never supposed to be president. In June of 2014, he was looking forward to a sabbatical that would include a trip to Assisi with his family. But, Siena College needed his guidance and his talents. Br. Ed agreed to serve as interim president; a few months later he was sworn in as the College's 11th president. Siena will be forever grateful.
In recognition of his humble and exemplary leadership, Siena College awarded Br. Ed an honorary degree in front of friends, family, and the friar community. The 10th president of Siena College, Fr. Kevin Mullen, O.F.M., celebrated the Mass; the 12th president of Siena College, Chris Gibson '86, Ph.D., conferred the degree. Two of Br. Ed's siblings, Sheila and Joe (above), accepted the diploma on behalf of the Coughlin family.
"A Franciscan graduate of Bishop Timon High School in his native Buffalo, and St. Bonaventure University, Brother Ed will now be counted as a son of Siena College forever."
"Br. Ed led Siena with grace and humility, and is deeply missed by our faculty, students and staff. His influence on Siena was profound. Speaking personally, Ed was one of the kindest and most trustworthy people I have ever worked with. I feel fortunate that he was part of my professional and personal life, and I shall always cherish his mentorship, insight, and good humor."
Margaret Madden, Ph.D., provost
"Given Ed’s great love and contributions to Franciscan scholarship it made great sense to celebrate Ed’s legacy on the Feast of St. Francis October 4. I very much enjoyed reconnecting with Ed’s family and yet it was bittersweet in that it was a stark reminder once again of the great loss that Ed’s absence has been for me, the friars and our campus community."
Fr. Mark Reamer '83, O.F.M., D.Min., vice president for mission