GRAND RAPIDS — The Dominican Sisters of Grand Rapids have elected a new four-person leadership team to a six-year term, which takes effect Sunday, July 1.
The election was Sunday, Feb. 26, with nearly 100 sister delegates casting votes for a prioress, vicaress and two councilors.
The team is responsible for the congregation’s governance and administration. It is led by the prioress (meaning “first among equals”) as the primary authority, with the vicaress serving as the official representative in the event of the prioress’ absence. The new team, based at the 34-acre Marywood campus on Fulton Street in Grand Rapids, includes:
Sr. Maureen Geary, O.P., as the new prioress. She most recently served as vicaress and councilor for finance for the congregation. The Grand Rapids native earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of Notre Dame, a master’s degree from Catholic Theological Union in Chicago and a juris doctor degree from the University of Michigan. She previously worked as a certified public accountant and as an attorney, has taught and served in administration at Aquinas College and served in ministries with the Diocese of Grand Rapids Secretariat for Social Justice and the Kent County Vision to End Homelessness.
Sr. Sandra Delgado, O.P., is the new vicaress. The Saginaw native has been based in Kentucky for 26 years. There, she has worked in adult education and Hispanic ministry, most recently for the Diocese of Lexington. She has a bachelor’s degree from Nazareth College in Kalamazoo and a master’s degree in adult and continuing adult education from Michigan State University.
Sr. Lucianne Siers, O.P., is one of the two councilors. Born in Saginaw, she most recently was executive director of the Partnership for Global Justice in New York City and co-promoter of justice for the Dominicans of North America. She has served in leadership roles with a number of other organizations, including six years working in Eastern Europe on behalf of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops based in Washington, D.C. She earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Aquinas College, a second master’s degree from Boston College and a doctorate in missiology and catechesis from the Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C.
Sr. Mary Ann Barrett, O.P., is the other councilor. She began her religious ministry as a teacher more than 40 years ago and subsequently directed campus ministry at Aquinas College and worked in several administrative roles on the Marywood campus. She has also been a campus minister at the Aquinas Newman Center in Albuquerque, N.M., and served as a pastoral associate for a Catholic parish in that city before assuming a similar position in Holland in 2010. Born in Alpena, she received bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Aquinas College, a second master’s degree in pastoral studies from Loyola University in Chicago and a certificate in biblical studies from Catholic Theological Union in Chicago.
“This team will play a pivotal role in our Dominican future,” said Sr. Nathalie Meyer, outgoing prioress. “In addition to guiding our sisters and overseeing numerous ministry projects, they will lead in the further development and redefinition of our Marywood campus as a health care and senior living destination.”
The current leadership team members, in addition to Meyer as prioress and Geary as vicaress, are Sr. Joyce Ann Hertzig, councilor for mission and ministry, and Sr. Mary Navarre, councilor for Dominican life.
The Dominican Sisters of Grand Rapids have been based at Marywood for more than 90 years. Currently, about 240 sisters are serving people in need in education, health care and related outreach locally, nationally and in Peru and Honduras. Locally, they also interact with more than 120 women and men called associates who share their Dominican values. A number of the sisters are noted artists, writers and musicians.