The following is a letter sent out this morning by Santa Clara University President Michael E. Engh, S.J.
Dear Members of the Santa Clara University community,
With profound sadness I share the news that Paul Locatelli, S.J., died this morning, July 12, around 5 a.m. He was 71 years old. At the time of his death, Fr. Locatelli was surrounded by his loving family and Jesuit brothers.
Respected and loved by the entire Santa Clara family, Fr. Locatelli leaves a legacy unmatched at Santa Clara. He was devoted to his alma mater and gave of himself with passion and generosity for over 30 years - as chancellor, president, academic vice president, and faculty member.
Fr. Locatelli was the 27th president of Santa Clara University, serving an unprecedented 20-year tenure from 1988-2008. After stepping down as president, he was named Chancellor of Santa Clara in January of 2009. In 2007, Jesuit Superior General Peter-Hans Kolvenbach, S.J. appointed Fr. Locatelli as Secretary for Jesuit Higher Education for the Society of Jesus, a position he held until the time of his death.
Prior to becoming president in 1988, Fr. Locatelli served as SCU’s academic vice president and associate dean of business, as well as a member of the faculty of the accounting department.
Raised in Boulder Creek, Calif. , he graduated from Santa Clara in 1960 with a degree in accounting. After serving in the U.S. Army, he joined the Society of Jesus in 1962 and was ordained as a priest in 1974. He earned a doctorate in business administration from the University of Southern California in 1971 and a master of divinity from the Jesuit School of Theology at Berkeley in 1974, where his work focused on ethics and values in contemporary society.
Fr. Locatelli's deep love for Santa Clara touched all of us and permeated every part of our community, from the students, faculty and staff on campus, to our alumni, friends, and extended family off campus. We are all blessed to have known him and shared in his dynamic and compassionate presence. We thank God for the gift of Paul's life to our community. May he rest in peace.
Today (Monday) at Noon we will be offering a Mass for Fr. Locatelli for the community to gather.