Gannon Celebrates Fall Commencement 2019

One hundred forty-six Gannon University graduates will be recognized at the University’s Fall Commencement ceremony.

One hundred forty-six Gannon University graduates will be recognized at the University’s Fall Commencement ceremony.

One hundred forty-six Gannon University graduates will be recognized at the University’s Fall Commencement ceremony to be held at 2 p.m. on Sunday, Dec. 8, at the Hammermill Center, 620 Peach St.

Gannon University’s President Keith Taylor, Ph.D. will award the 146 degrees, including six doctoral degrees, 48 master’s degrees, 88 bachelor’s degrees and four associate degrees. Two students will graduate summa cum laude. Students from 10 nations will be earning degrees Sunday. Three of these students come from Germany and will be receiving dual degrees in international management and international industrial management through a partnership between Gannon University and Esslingen University in Germany.   

This year’s keynote speaker is James F. Toohey, Esq., Ph.D. ’56, attorney-at-law at Quinn, Buseck, Leemhuis, Toohey & Kroto, Inc., a law firm in Erie. Toohey is also a former member of the Gannon University Board of Trustees. 

Commencement Events 

BACCALAUREATE MASS  
Time: 11 a.m. 

Location: Yehl Ballroom, Waldron Campus Center, 124 W. Seventh St. 

COMMENCEMENT INTERVIEWS  
Time: 1:30 - 1:50 p.m. 
Location: Hammermill Center, 620 Peach St.  

Available: Lawrence T. Persico, Bishop, Diocese of Erie; Keith Taylor, Ph.D., President, Gannon University; James Toohey, Commencement speaker  

COMMENCEMENT 
Time: 2 p.m. 

Location: Hammermill Center, 124 W. Seventh St. 

About the Speaker 

James Toohey graduated from Gannon University in 1956. He was in ROTC while at Gannon and was commissioned as an officer before serving in the Army for two years following graduation. He graduated from Dickinson School of Law in Carlisle, Pa., in 1962. He was admitted to practice in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and the Federal Judicial System and became affiliated in the mid-1960s with the Quinn Law Firm, with which he is still associated. Toohey was a member of the Gannon Board of Trustees for 30 years and served as its Chairman for two years – the only lay person to have held this position. 

Toohey is married to Mary Ann Benecki Toohey. The couple has six children, five of whom still reside in Erie. Eighteen of his 20 grandchildren are also living in Erie. He and Mary Ann have been associated with St. George Roman Catholic Church for more than 50 years and have served in various positions in the parish and the Diocese.   

Toohey was a founder for Spectrum Control Inc., an electronics company located in Fairview. Lake Erie Institute of Rehabilitation, and Little U Preschool for children. Jim and Mary Ann have been recognized for their involvement in several charitable, civic and religious institutions.  They attribute any success that they may have achieved during their lifetimes to a deep faith that has constantly guided and counseled them through all the challenges that life presented.   
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