Congratulations to Fr. Dennis Baker, S.J. ’98, who Wednesday was named president of Loyola Blakefield.
Like Canisius, Loyola Blakefield is a Catholic, Jesuit, college preparatory school – it offers grades six through 12 and is located in Towson, Maryland.
“We are incredible excited to announce that after an exhaustive national search spanning over the last 12 months, Loyola Blakefield has named Rev. Dennis Baker, S.J., as our next President,” @loyolablakefield announced on Instagram.
“The energy across campus is palpable as we prepare to welcome Fr. Baker as our next spiritual and formational leader.”
“If you’re not following @loyolablakefield, you better start – I’m thrilled to be the next president there,” Baker posted on Instagram before invoking the school’s nickname. “Roll, Dons, Roll!”
Fr. Baker, a native of Niagara Falls who holds an M.S. degree in Criminal Justice Administration from Niagara University, also served at Canisius High School as a history teacher and in other roles. He is pictured here celebrating Mass in Scaccia Auditorium.
He served as President of Xavier High School in Chuuk, Federated States of Micronesia from 2016-2021, during which he led the institution through a devastating tropical drought and the emergence of the COVID-19 pandemic; he also focused on fundraising and fiscal management that led to unprecedented capital projects which enhanced the campus.
Fr. Baker, who was the Director of Engagement and Planned Giving at Xavier High School in Manhattan from August 2021 to August 2022, currently serves as a Trustee at the University of Scranton and Holy Cross High School. He is a former Trustee at Fairfield University and Regis High School in Manhattan.
Fr. Baker earned a B.A. in History and an M.S. in Philosophy at Fordham; a Master of Divinity degree from the Boston College School of Theology and Ministry, and an M.Ed. from Columbia University Teachers College.
In a first-person article earlier this year written for CHS Today magazine, Fr. Baker cited the influence of CHS President Fr. David Ciancimino, S.J., who was part of Baker's ordination ceremony in 2015.
“No one else in my life has influenced my image of priesthood more than Fr. Ciancimino, who was principal at Canisius when I was a student. … He was an example and a model for me in my early years, especially when I was considering applying to the Jesuits.
“As we’ve both gotten older, we’ve developed a close bond and a friendship which I cherish deeply. … He remains a model priest for me and for many other Jesuits."
Fr. Baker is expected to begin his role as president at Loyola Blakefield in mid-2024.