Univ. of Portland Announces Holy Cross Religious as New VPs

University of Portland President Rev. Mark L. Poorman, C.S.C., has announced the appointments of Rev. Gerard Olinger, C.S.C., as vice president for University relations, and of Rev. John Donato, C.S.C., as vice president for student affairs. Both appointments become effective January 1, 2016.

Fr. Olinger will assume the position currently held by Laurie Kelley, who has accepted the position of president and chief development officer for the Providence Foundations throughout the Oregon region.

Kelley has worked at the University since 2006, serving first as the director of marketing and communications prior to her current role as vice president for University relations.

“We are deeply grateful for Laurie’s years of distinguished service and many impressive accomplishments during her tenure at the University,” said Fr. Poorman, “and we wish her well as she takes advantage of this tremendous professional opportunity with a valued Universityand communitypartner.”

Since his arrival on The Bluff in 2009, Fr. Olinger has served the University in many capacities. For the past four years, as vice president for student affairs, he has overseen the Offices of Residence Life, Public Safety, Student Activities, Campus Ministry, and International Student Services, as well as the Career Center, Health Center, and Moreau Center. While working in student affairs, he assisted with the planning and development of several important campus projects including the Beauchamp Recreation and Wellness Center, the Pilot House renovation, and the new residence hall. He also serves as a pastoral resident in Schoenfeldt Hall and is one of the instructors of “The Character Project” theology course.

Prior to his time in student affairs, Fr. Olinger served as executive assistant to the president. In that position he managed the University of Portland’s strategic planning process, directed legal affairs, and coordinated the affairs of the Board of Regents.

Fr. Donato has served as the associate vice president for student development since 2007. In that role, he has direct responsibility for the Offices of International Student Services, Residence Life, Student Activities, and the Moreau Center.Fr. Donato also serves as the deputy Title IX coordinator for students, co-chair of the Early Alert Program, pastoral resident in Fields Hall, and religious superior for the Holy Cross community at the University of Portland.

Prior to his current role, Fr. Donato served as director of human formation at Mount Angel Seminary, and senior associate director of Campus Ministry at the University of Portland.

“I am personally grateful for the contributions of all three of these individuals to our University community, and excited for what the future will bring for each as they transition into their new roles,” said Fr. Poorman.


The University of Portland is an independently governed Catholic university guided by the Congregation of Holy Cross. U.S. News & World Report ranks the institution as one of the top ten regional universities in the American West. It is the only school in Oregon to offer a College of Arts & Sciences, a graduate school, and nationally accredited programs in the schools of business, education, engineering, and nursing.

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