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Past Speakers

Michael Brophy

President of Benedictine University
An innovative higher education professional, Michael S. Brophy, Ph.D., became the 11th president of Benedictine University in August 2015. Brophy began his career in higher education as an associate dean of admission at The College of St. Rose in Albany, N.Y., where he completed his undergraduate and graduate studies. He also worked in enrollment management at The Sage Colleges in Troy and Albany, N.Y., Stephens College in Columbia, Mo., and the State University of New York in Canton, N.Y. He left the State University of New York system to become film instructor, first-year seminar instructor and associate provost at Long Island University in Southampton, N.Y. He was later named campus executive officer, dean and associate professor of English at the University of Wisconsin’s Baraboo campus, where he led academic programming and facilities development that helped increase enrollment by 10 percent. In 2006, Brophy was named president of Marymount California University, a Catholic, liberal arts college with 1,600 undergraduate and graduate students in Southern California. There, he led the transformation of a private two-year college to a multisite university with undergraduate and graduate degree offerings, doubling enrollment since 2009. He also spearheaded a facilities improvement project that updated aging facilities and built new living and learning environments and campuses in Southern and Northern California. Brophy was named the “Educator of the Year” by the Harbor City/Harbor Gateway Chamber of Commerce in 2013 and “Citizen of the Year” by the Rotary Club of Palos Verdes Sunset in 2012. He has presented on fundraising and higher education leadership, was appointed a columnist for the Huffington Post and was featured on the cover of the Los Angeles Business Journal. An accomplished filmmaker, Brophy wrote, directed and edited three films that were screened at film festivals, theaters, museums, universities and foundations throughout the United States, Cuba, and Europe. His screenplays were selected to the Independent Feature Project Market in New York.

In addition, he has accompanied gospel choirs at the State University of New York as a musician and performed with students and faculty at recitals at Marymount California University, University of Wisconsin-Baraboo/Sauk County and The College of Saint Rose. 
Brophy earned Bachelor of Arts in Music (Piano) and a Master of Arts in English degrees from The College of Saint Rose (NY), a Master of Fine Arts in Writing from Long Island University (NY), and a Ph.D. in Educational Leadership and Policy Analysis from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. A Fulbright recipient, he has taught and conducted research in Europe and Cuba. He and his wife, Tara, live with their three children in Naperville, Illinois.