President's House

Before Michael Hemesath became the first lay president of SJU in 2012, its presidents had always been monks, who had housing on campus. Not only was Dr. Hemesath not a monk, he also had a family. After an initial year of living in Frank House while his family stayed in Northfield, a 35-acre property was purchased on Fruit Farm Road, a few miles past Flynntown, to serve as the SJU President’s residence. The president and his family moved into the house on August 16th, 2013.

Rather than building a new house, which had been the original plan, it was decided that the already-standing house on the property would be renovated. After repairs, the cost of the house totaled $725,000.

This was the first piece of land ever to be owned outright by the university. The remainder of the campus buildings and grounds are rented from the Abbey.

Bibliography:

Kelso, Erin. "Our White House: SJU President moves into new university home," The Record, 6 September 2013, p.1 & 6.

Text drafted by Olivia Schleper '23