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Kevin Ryan, President and CEO, Covenant House International 

Headshot of Kevin Ryan

Kevin Ryan is a father, husband, child advocate, blogger and sometime runner. He arrived at Covenant House as a young lawyer in 1992 to provide legal aid to homeless youth and he now leads Covenant House International, one of the largest charities in the Americas dedicated to serving homeless youth, and ending child trafficking.

Founded in 1972, Covenant House’s work has been recognized with several of the world's most distinguished human rights awards, including the Conrad Hilton Humanitarian Award, the WOLA Human Rights Prize and the Olof Palme Peace Prize. Kevin describes Covenant House as a movement.

He and his Covenant House team have expanded the movement to 31 cities and 6 countries, most recently opening new Covenant Houses in Chicago, Asbury Park and Berkeley in 2017. Kevin is leading an aggressive expansion to end youth homelessness, which saw Covenant House reach 80,000 children and youth in 2017.

To support this expansion, Kevin and his team have built an international Sleep Out movement, involving thousands of participants across the United States and Canada who raise funds to house, feed and help homeless youth.

He championed groundbreaking research with Loyola University and the University of Pennsylvania, shaped by 911 interviews with homeless youth in 13 cities across Canada and the United States, which revealed in 2017 that 1 in 5 homeless youth has survived human trafficking.

Kevin previously served as the first public Child Advocate in New Jersey and the first commissioner of the New Jersey Department of Children and Families, as well as commissioner of the New Jersey Department of Human Services. He drafted some of the State's most important laws for youth, including the New Jersey Homeless Youth Act and the Foster Care Scholars Act.

His first book, Almost Home, a collaboration with former New York Times reporter Tina Kelley, became a national best seller in the Fall of 2012. The book tells the stories of 6 teenagers as they faced homelessness, violence and heartbreak in search of a place to call home. In 2015, President Barack Obama appointed Kevin to the President’s Advisory Council on Faith Based and Neighborhood Partnerships. In 2018, Kevin joined President Trump in the Oval Office to witness the signing of new human trafficking legislation that Kevin and Covenant House had championed for many years.  

He is a graduate of Catholic University, Georgetown Law Center and NYU Law School. A former Skadden Fellow and Wasserstein Fellow at Harvard Law School, Kevin's numerous media appearances on behalf of children include the TODAY Show, CBS This Morning, CNN, MSNBC, EWTN, Good Morning America and two stints on 60 Minutes. He lives in New Jersey with his wife Clare. Together they have 6 Ryan children.

Lecture 1: From Homeless to Hope
Lecture 1: Q&A Session

Lecture 2: Stop the Trafficking: Home and Hope for Homeless Youth
Lecture 2: Q&A Session

Lecture 3: The Humanitarian Crisis Confronting Children in Central America
Lecture 3: Q&A Session

Lecture 4: Helping Homeless Youth Amidst COVID-19

 

Rev. William J. Barber II, D. Min.

Rev. Dr. William J. Barber headshot

“It’s About Right and Wrong”

The Vincentian Center for Church and Society appointed Rev. William J. Barber II, D. Min. as the holder of the St. John’s University Chair of Social Justice 2018-19. St. John’s warmly welcomed the Rev. Dr. Barber and willingly opened its ears to his challenging and empowering moral message which emerges from his Christian foundation. Below are YouTube links to his past lectures:

Lecture 1: America, America, What's Going On?

Lecture 2: Reading the Signs of the Times: What does the November Election say about America?

Lecture 3: What's going on with the War Economy and Militarism?

Lecture 4: "With God Some Things Never Change" 

Vincentian Chair of Social Justice Lectures

Presented at the Vincentian Convocation during Founder's Week 

YearChair of Social Justice Presenters / Presentation Title
2019

Rev. Joseph G. Fitzgerald, C.M., Ph.D., S.T.D. ‘01C, ‘09G
Executive Secretary of the National Coordination of Indigenous Ministry (CONAPI)
“Hope from the Margins: The Prophetic Witness of Indigenous Peoples”

2018

Margaret M. Fitzpatrick, S.C., Ed.D., President, St. Thomas Aquinas College
and Member of the Board of Trustees, St. John’s University
“What Must Be Done?”

2017

Most Reverend John O. Barres, S.T.D., J.C.L., D.D.,  Bishop of the Diocese of Rockville Centre

2016

Reverend Dennis H. Holtschneider, C.M., Ed.D.
“The Heart of Vincentian Higher Education”

2015

The Most Reverend Robert W. McElroy, Bishop of San Diego, CA

2014

Reverend John Rybolt, C.M.
“Vincentian Social Justice”

2013

Sr. Louise Sullivan, D. C., Ph.D. Professor Emerita,
Foreign Languages, Niagara University 
“The Vincentian Mission of Justice and Charity: a Seventeenth-Century Vision for the Twenty-First Century”  

2011

Most Reverend David O’Connell, C.M. , Bishop of Trenton, New Jersey
Be Vincentian!”

2010

Most Rev. Timothy M. Dolan, Ph.D., Archbishop of New York 
“Vincent de Paul, A Saint for Yesterday and Today”

2009

Patricia P. de Nava, past president of AIC (Association Internationales des Chariteَs), Liaison from the Association of International Charity [AIC] to the Vincentian Family and Vincentian Commission for promoting Systemic Change
“Vincentian Family and Systemic Change”

2008

The Most Reverend Nicholas DiMarzio, Ph.D., D.D., Bishop of Brooklyn, NY
Migration Today: A Social Justice Issue”

2007

Dr. John Edward Sexton, Ph.D., J.D., President, New York University
Faith in/and the University”

2006

Most Reverend Celestino Migliore, Apostolic Nuncio, Permanent Observer of the Holy See to the United Nations
“The Church, the United Nations and Integral Development”

2005

Very Rev. G. Gregory Gay, Superior General of the Congregation of the Mission and Daughters of Charity
“A Passion for Justice”

2004

S. Evelyne Franc, DC, Superioress General of the Daughters of Charity
“Toward a Civilization of Love and Justice”

2003

Peter Steinfels, Ph.D., “The New York Times”
“Pacem in Terris: A Retrospective”

2002

Very Rev. Thomas F. McKenna, CM, Provincial Superior, Eastern Province, Congregation of the Mission
“People of the Scarred Coin”

2001

Rev. Bryan Massingale, St. Francis Seminary, WI
“Tribalism or Solidarity? The Challenge of the 21st Century” 

2000

Dr. Dolores Leckey, Woodstock Theological Center, Georgetown University
“A Spirituality for Jubilee Justice”

1999

Rev. David Hollenbach, SJ, Professor Moral Theology,  Boston College
“The Common Good and Urban Poverty”

1998

Most Reverend Howard Hubbard, Bishop  of Albany, NY
“Charity and Justice within the Gospel and the Church’s Social Teaching”

1997

Dr. Mary Ann Glendon, Harvard Law
Social Justice and Human Rights”

1996

Rev. Bryan Hehir, Harvard Divinity
“The Ministry of Human Rights and Catholic Higher Education”

1995Rev. Robert P. Maloney, CM, Superior General, Congregation of the Mission
“The Justice Challenge in a Vincentian University”

 

NAMECOLLEGEFELLOWS ENTERING CLASS
Mark Juszczak, Ed.D.College of Professional StudiesClass of 2018
Willian Reisel, Ph.D.The Peter J. Tobin College of BusinessClass of 2018
Fabienne Cadet, Ph.D.The Peter J. Tobin College of BusinessClass of 2018
William F. Byrne, Ph.D.St. John's College of Liberal Arts and SciencesClass of 2018
Victoria Shoaf, Ph.D., C.A.The Peter J. Tobin College of BusinessClass of 2017
Heather Robertson, Ph.D., NCC,CRC, ACS, LPC (CT)The School of EducationClass of 2017
William "Alex" Morel '97CSt. John's College of Liberal Arts and SciencesClass of 2017
Sven Horak, Ph.D.The Peter J. Tobin College of BusinessClass of 2017
Neil H. Feinstein, M.S.College of Professional StudiesClass of 2017
Jennifer Chiu, Ed.D.College of Pharmacy and Health SciencesClass of 2017
Aaris Sherin, M.F.A.St. John's College of Liberal Arts and SciencesClass of 2016
Michael Rizzo, M.B.A.College of Professional StudiesClass of 2016
Biagio Pilato, J.D.The Peter J. Tobin College of BusinessClass of 2016
Cynthia R. Philips, Ed.D.The Peter J. Tobin College of BusinessClass of 2016
Meghan Clark, Ph.D.St. John's College of Liberal Arts and SciencesClass of 2016
Blase C. Billack, Ph.D.College of Pharmacy and Health SciencesClass of 2016
Alexsandr V. Gevorkyan, Ph.D.The Peter J. Tobin College of BusinessClass of 2015
Anne M. Galvin, Ph.D.St. John's College of Liberal Arts and SciencesClass of 2015
Preety Gadhoke, Ph.D. M.P.H.College of Pharmacy and Health SciencesClass of 2015
Ellen K. Boegel, J.D.College of Professional StudiesClass of 2015
Sandra Schamroth Abrams, Ph.D.The School of EducationClass of 2015
Ivana Vancurova, Ph.D.St. John's College of Liberal Arts and SciencesClass of 2014
Mary Beth Schaefer, Ed.D.The School of EducationClass of 2014
Margaret McGuinness, J.D.School of LawClass of 2014
Flora Keshishian, Ph.D.St. John's College of Liberal Arts and SciencesClass of 2014
Jeffrey Grossmann, J.D.College of Professional StudiesClass of 2014
Timothy Coville, Ph.D.The Peter J. Tobin College of BusinessClass of 2014
Joan P. Ball, Ph.D.The Peter J. Tobin College of BusinessClass of 2014
Ebtesam Ahmed, Pharm.D., M.S.College of Pharmacy and Health SciencesClass of 2014
Abraham Stefanidis, Ph.D.The Peter J. Tobin College of BusinessClass of 2013
Rosemary C. Salomone, Ph.D., JD, LL.MSchool of LawClass of 2013
Judith A. Ryder, Ph.D.St. John's College of Liberal Arts and SciencesClass of 2013
Mary Ellen Freeley, Ed.D.The School of EducationClass of 2013
Cynthia Chambers, Ph.D.University LibrariesClass of 2013
Manouchkathe Cassagnol, Pharm.D., CGP, BCPSCollege of Pharmacy and Health SciencesClass of 2013
William Ryall Carroll Ph.D.The Peter J. Tobin College of BusinessClass of 2013
Thomas J. Ward, D.P.A.College of Professional StudiesClass of 2012
Scyatta Wallace-Hannah, Ph.D.St. John's College of Liberal Arts and SciencesClass of 2012
Sharon See, Pharm.D., BCPS, FCCPCollege of Pharmacy and Health SciencesClass of 2012
Judith F. Mangione, Ph.D.The School of EducationClass of 2012
Thomas M. Kitts, Ph.D.College of Professional StudiesClass of 2012
Caroline Fuchs, M.A., M.L.S.University LibrariesClass of 2012
Adrian P. Fitzsimons, Ph.D.The Peter J. Tobin College of BusinessClass of 2012
Kathryn G. Shaughnessy, M.A., M.L.S.University LibrariesClass of 2011
Mark J. Prendergast, M.S.College of Professional StudiesClass of 2011
Robert K. Eschenauer, Ph.D.The School of EducationClass of 2011
Nina T. Dorata, Ph.D.The Peter J. Tobin College of BusinessClass of 2011
Marc O. DeGirolami, J.D., J.S.D., LL.M.School of LawClass of 2011
Fred P. Cocozzelli, Ph.D.St. John's College of Liberal Arts and SciencesClass of 2011
Rodger M. Casselman, Ph.D.The Peter J. Tobin College of BusinessClass of 2011
May Webber, Ph.D.College of Professional StudiesClass of 2010
Igor Tomic, Ph.D.The Peter J. Tobin College of BusinessClass of 2010
Tina Kanmaz, Pharm.D.College of Pharmacy and Health SciencesClass of 2010
Almerinda Forte, Ph.D.College of Professional StudiesClass of 2010
Frank Cantelmo, Ph.D.St. John's College of Liberal Arts and SciencesClass of 2010
Jennifer Baum, J.D.School of LawClass of 2010
Linda M. Sama, Ph.D.The Peter J. Tobin College of BusinessClass of 2009
Somnath Pal, Ph.D.College of Pharmacy and Health SciencesClass of 2009
Mark L. Movsesian, J.D.School of LawClass of 2009
Azzedine Layachi, Ph.D.St. John's College of Liberal Arts and SciencesClass of 2009
Paul R. Gyllenhammer, Ph.D.St. John's College of Liberal Arts and SciencesClass of 2009
E. Francine Guastello, Ed.D.The School of EducationClass of 2009
Joan S. Tropnas, Ph.D.College of Professional StudiesClass of 2008
Yvonne Pratt-Johnson, Ed.D.The School of EducationClass of 2008
Irvin N. Hirshfield, Ph.D.St. John's College of Liberal Arts and SciencesClass of 2008
Christopher J. Borgen, J.D.School of LawClass of 2008
Rene S. Parmar, Ph.D.The School of EducationClass of 2007
Peggy F. Jacobson, Ph.D.St. John's College of Liberal Arts and SciencesClass of 2007
John P. Angelidis, Ph.D.The Peter J. Tobin College of BusinessClass of 2007
Jaime E. Rodriguez, Ph.D.College of Professional StudiesClass of 2006
Belenna M. Lauto, M.F.A.St. John's College of Liberal Arts and SciencesClass of 2006
Marc E. Gillespie, Ph.D. College of Pharmacy and Health SciencesClass of 2006
Sue M. Ford, Ph.D.College of Pharmacy and Health SciencesClass of 2006
Christopher P. Vogt, Ph.D.St. John's College of Liberal Arts and SciencesClass of 2005
Annalisa Sacca, Ph.D.St. John's College of Liberal Arts and SciencesClass of 2005
Kevin S. Rioux, Ph.D.St. John's College of Liberal Arts and SciencesClass of 2005
Basilio G. Monteiro, Ph.D.College of Professional StudiesClass of 2005
Gina M.Calabrese, J.D.School of LawClass of 2005
James S. Bethea, Ph.D.The School of EducationClass of 2005
Jean-Pierre M. Ruiz, S.T.D.St. John's College of Liberal Arts and SciencesClass of 2004
Regina M. Mistretta, Ed.D.The School of EducationClass of 2004
Brenda Massetti, Ph.D.The Peter J. Tobin College of BusinessClass of 2004
John M. Conry, Pharm.D.College of Pharmacy and Health SciencesClass of 2004
Craig A. Baron, Ph.D.College of Professional StudiesClass of 2004
Joseph L. Adolphe, M.F.A. St. John's College of Liberal Arts and SciencesClass of 2004
Robert F. Pecorella, Ph.D.St. John's College of Liberal Arts and SciencesClass of 2003
Michael J. Callaghan, C.M., Ph.D.College of Professional StudiesClass of 2003
Elizabeth N. Brondolo, Ph.D.St. John's College of Liberal Arts and SciencesClass of 2003
Barrett P. Brenton, Ph.D.St. John's College of Liberal Arts and SciencesClass of 2003
Brett E. Blake, Ph.D.The School of EducationClass of 2003
James O'Keefe, Ph.D.College of Professional StudiesClass of 2002
Rafael A. Javier, Ph.D.St. John's College of Liberal Arts and SciencesClass of 2002
Ann L. Goldweber, J.D.School of LawClass of 2002
Robert R. Tomes, Ph.D.College of Professional StudiesClass of 2001
Michael A. Simons, J.D.School of LawClass of 2001
Marilyn A. Martone, Ph.D.St. John's College of Liberal Arts and SciencesClass of 2001
Joanne M. Carroll, Ph.D.College of Pharmacy and Health SciencesClass of 2001
Vincent M. DiLorenzo, J.D.School of LawClass of 2000
Charles M.A. Clark, Ph.D.The Peter J. Tobin College of BusinessClass of 2000
Larry W. Boone, Ph.D.The Peter J. Tobin College of BusinessClass of 2000