Who We Are
ACE Principal Academy Team
Greg O'Donnell, Ed.D.
For a full list of our fellows and their archdioceses, please visit the link below.
Where We Serve
ACE Principal Academy partners with superintendents and those in central offices of (arch)dioceses to strengthen, sustain, and transform the work of principals within the (arch)diocese. To date, the program has partnered with 19 (arch)dioceses to support principals and other leaders in Catholic schools. Anyone who works in the central office of their (arch)diocese can fill out this form to discuss ways the ACE Principal Academy can help support their leaders.
ACE Principal Academy Partner (Arch)dioceses:
- Archdiocese of Chicago
- Diocese of Joliet
- Diocese of Rockford
- Diocese of Cleveland
- Diocese of Toledo
- Diocese of Columbus
- Diocese of Camden
- Archdiocese of Milwaukee
- Archdiocese of Philadelphia
- Archdiocese of Los Angeles
- Archdiocese of Detroit
- Archdiocese of St. Louis
- Archdiocese of Louisville
- Diocese of Dallas
- Diocese of Arlington
- Diocese of Fort Wayne - South Bend
- Diocese of Phoenix
The typical ACE Principal Academy Fellow is an emerging transformational leader – someone with at least two years of experience as a principal but who is aspiring to elevate their leadership and transform both their school and broader (arch)diocesan community. Leaders who possess the following dispositions are ideal candidates for the Fellowship:
- Displays a growth mindset
- Commitment to the mission of Catholic education.
- A strong belief in students and that all individuals can learn and grow.
- Demonstrates humility and a capacity for vulnerability.
- Possesses a strong work ethic and recognizes their locus of control.
History of the ACE Principal Academy
The ACE Principal Academy began as the Center for Transformational Educational Leadership (CTEL) in 2015 through a partnership with the Archdiocese of Chicago, providing coaching and professional development to cohorts of principals seeking to grow in their capacity to lead Catholic schools. Since its inception, the program has supported Chicago Fellows in over a quarter of the schools across the Archdiocese.
Building upon this success in Chicago, CTEL expanded its programming in 2021 with the Cabrini Fellowship, which is named to honor the work of Saint Francis Xavier Cabrini. Despite tremendous odds, Mother Cabrini allowed God to work through her so that she could establish faith-based institutions of learning across the United States that served communities most in need. The Cabrini Fellows program allows the University of Notre Dame to reach (arch)dioceses beyond Chicago and serve school leaders interested in expanding their leadership capacity through a combination of individual coaching and professional development that will prepare them to take on broader leadership within their (arch)diocese after completion of the program.
In 2022, ACE renamed CTEL to the ACE Principal Academy in order to better reflect the program's commitment to foster excellence for Catholic school leaders.