Patrick E. Clancy '68
“The joy of giving … ”
That was what Pat Clancy offered his fellow students when he solicited volunteers for his newly formed campus organization in 1968. The organization was named SPUD—Student Programs for Urban Development. And Pat Clancy was its founder, its conscience and its spark.
Thirty-six years later, SPUD is a premier Holy Cross institution, emblematic of so much that our College strives to be. Each semester, it provides more than 600 students to work at shelters for the homeless and battered women, participate in prison ministry, tutor underprivileged children, serve as Big Brothers and Sisters, and assist the elderly, immigrants and others in need.
And 36 years later, Pat Clancy is still proclaiming the joy of giving through a life of service and mission.
The fortunate among us discover their calling while still young. So it was with Pat, who arrived on Mount St. James from Wisconsin, understanding, from the beginning, that he was to be a man for others. Whether spending his summers working with VISTA or his free hours during the school years tutoring young people at Plumley Village, Pat made his life into a perpetual force for change.
Graduating magna cum laude from Holy Cross, he earned hisjuris doctor from Harvard Law School, where he edited The Civil Rights, Civil Liberties Law Review. In 1971, he joined The Community Builders, a Boston-based nonprofit housing development corporation whose mission—simple in conception and complex in execution—was stated in its name. By 1976, Pat had become the company’s chief executive officer.
For the last 33 years, Pat has worked tirelessly to develop, finance and manage affordable housing in communities across the nation. Regularly inspiring a staff of 400, Pat has created over 15,000 units of housing and has arranged for community development financing totaling more than one billion dollars. In a time when fragmentation seems the order of the day, Pat Clancy has spent his life bringing people together, creating communities where there was once only deprivation.
For his commitment to social justice, his decision to channel his abundant talents into service for those most in need and his desire to imagine a world where compassion is our primary motivation, the College of the Holy Cross presents to Patrick Clancy the Sanctae Crucis Award.