By Ian Christopher Beck ’12
Brophy President the Rev. Eddie Reese, S.J. celebrated his 50th anniversary of being a member of the Society of Jesus Saturday, Oct.1.
Fr. Reese, who has served as president of Brophy for 15 years, became a Jesuit in 1961.
He has been a teacher and administrator at schools including Loyola High School in Los Angeles and Bellarmine Prep in San Jose, and also spent a handful of years in Australia before coming to Brophy.
Assistant Principal for Curriculum and Instruction Mr. Seamus Walsh has been at Brophy for all 15 years of Fr. Reese’s tenure and said he has seen change on campus as a resolt of Fr. Reese involvement.
“He is very much a change-agent,” Mr. Walsh said.
He also said that Fr. Reese wasn’t afraid “to hit the big button” and move forward with change faster than it happens at other schools around the country.
Brophy held an anniversary gala for Fr. Reese in honor of his accomplishment.
“Oh it was really fun … because I had no idea what was going to happen,” Fr. Reese said of the gathering. “I did know they were doing some kind of a video because I walked in on a video shot but other than that, I didn’t know who was going to speak or any of that.”
Guests arrived from all over the country and the globe with some of Fr. Reese’s friends and colleagues from as far away as Australia making the trip.
When asked how he managed to keep his passion throughout the 50 years as a Jesuit, Fr. Reese joked that it beat working for a living.
“It doesn’t seem like very long,” he said.
Fr. Reese said he has vivid memories of 50-year anniversaries held at Loyola High School and recalls how old the men appeared to be.
“Then all of a sudden I’m one of them; it all seemed to go by very fast,” he said.
Over the course of his tenure in the Society of Jesus, Fr. Reese has worked primarily with schools, an experience he calls fun and rewarding.
“My mom used to say, she was a teacher, that being around young people keeps you young, and I think there’s some truth to that,” he said.