The Most Rev. Robert Nugent Lynch To Address Gannon University Spring Commencement

Posted: May 2, 2017

The Most Rev. Robert N. Lynch will be the keynote speaker when Gannon University President Keith Taylor, Ph.D., will recognize the graduates of the Class of 2017 at Commencement on Saturday, May 6, at 2 p.m. at the Erie Insurance Arena.

Bishop Lynch retired in November as Bishop of the Roman Catholic Diocese of St. Petersburg, Florida. He will be awarded a Doctor of Humane Letters degree, honoris causa at the ceremony.

Bishop Lynch, a native of Charleston, West Virginia, was formally ordained and installed as the fourth Bishop of the Diocese of St. Petersburg on Jan. 26, 1996 and retired on Nov. 27, 2016.

He received his Bachelor of Arts Degree from the Pontifical College Josephinum and a Master of Divinity degree from Pope John XXIII National Seminary in 1978.

During the ten-year period between his college seminary and re-entry into major seminary, Bishop Lynch taught high school, organized a lay teachers association in the Diocese of Columbus, served the Catholic Conference of Ohio as coordinator of government programs, and served at the NCCB/USCC at the invitation of the late Cardinal Joseph Bernardin.

Shortly after priestly ordination, Bishop Lynch was assigned to St. John Vianney College Seminary in Miami as president-rector where he remained for five years.

He returned to the NCCB/USCC to serve as associate general secretary with responsibility for public policy and later as general secretary. One of the highlights of his years in Washington, D.C., was the opportunity to coordinate the pastoral visits by Pope John Paul II.

In addition to his role as Bishop of the Diocese of St. Petersburg, Bishop Lynch has served as the secretary of the Florida Catholic Conference, and he is currently a member of the board of trustees of the Saint Vincent de Paul and St. John Vianney Seminaries. He is a member of U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, the Episcopal Advisory Board of the Cause for Beatification of Archbishop Fulton Sheen, and the Maryknoll Bishops Advisory Committee. 

Bishop Lynch served as elected Chairman of the Board for Catholic Relief Services from 2002 until 2007, as consultant to the Board of Catholic Health Association through 2013, as a member of the board of trustees of St. Leo University through 2016, and as a member of the Catholic Medical Mission Board through 2016. He was instrumental in the creation of Gannon University's Ruskin, Florida campus and assisted with the Blessing and Dedication in August 2015.