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Fr. Kollman appointed CSC director

Observer Staff Report | Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Fr. Paul V. Kollman, associate professor of theology, has been appointed executive director of Notre Dame’s Center for Social Concerns (CSC), effective July 1, the University announced Monday in a press release.

Kollman succeeds Fr. Bill Lies, who was recently named vice president for mission engagement and church affairs. The CSC was designated a University institute under Lies’ leadership.

“I’m humbled and honored to be asked to lead the Center for Social Concerns,” Kollman said in the press release. “I look forward to building on the vision of my predecessors, Center founder Fr. Don McNeill and Fr. Bill Lies, and working with the host of talented and committed colleagues who have made the Center a vibrant place of engaged scholarship and service learning. I’m confident that together we can deepen the Center’s role in bringing together education of mind and heart, a goal long central to the mission of the Congregation of Holy Cross and of Notre Dame.”

Kollman, who spent this semester teaching theology at Tangaza College in Nairobi, Kenya, was selected for his commitment to service in his experience as a teacher and administrator, Don Pope-Davis, vice president and associate provost for undergraduate studies, said in the press release.

“Fr. Kollman’s scholarship and teaching, his commitment to Catholic social teaching and his administrative experience all uniquely equip him for leadership of the Center for Social Concerns,” Pope-Davis said.

Kollman has worked with the Center since 2004, including his recent tenure as its acting director. In 2009, he and CSC assistant director Rachel Tomas Morgan co-authored an article in the New Theology Review on the challenges and opportunities of service-learning programs at Catholic universities.

Kollman’s theological scholarship and teaching involve African Christianity, mission history and world Christianity. He has pursued research in eastern Africa, Nigeria, South Africa, Europe and the United States. He has published articles and reviews in several journals of theology, African studies and religious studies, and authored the book “The Evangelization of Slaves and Catholic Origins in Eastern Africa.” He is currently working on a book about the Catholic missionary evangelization of eastern Africa and a study of the Catholic Charismatic Movement in Africa.

In addition to his commitment to the CSC, Kollman serves as a fellow of three Notre Dame institutes: the Kellogg Institute for International Studies, the Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies and the Nanovic Institute for European Studies.

A Cincinnati native and 1984 Notre Dame alumnus, Kollman earned a master’s degree in theology from the University in 1990 and a doctoral degree from the University of Chicago Divinity School in 2001.