Archbishop Kurtz and Priest Council Commit to Historic $10 Million Donation Over Next Five Years

LOUISVILLE, KY (August 12, 2021) – The Catholic Education Foundation of Louisville announced today that the Archdiocese of Louisville will fund $10 million in support of the Foundation’s mission over the next five years, the largest gift of its kind in the organization’s 25-year history. The proceeds will be used to provide tuition assistance to families who cannot afford the full cost to attend a Catholic school in the Archdiocese of Louisville.

Last fall, the Foundation and its funding partners, including the Archdiocese of Louisville, awarded a record $6.5 million in tuition assistance to an all-time high 3,350 students across 39 Catholic elementary schools in central Kentucky.

The archdiocesan commitment is a multi-year continuation of annual funding currently in place and also includes an additional gift to the permanent endowment of the Foundation. 

Each year, the 110 parishes in the Archdiocese contribute 1% of their revenues ($1.3 million) to support the Foundation’s tuition assistance program. In addition, through the Catholic Services Appeal, the Archdiocese annually funds approximately $500,000 to the Foundation to aid families in need in the nine Catholic high schools in central Kentucky. Extending this very meaningful support over the next five years would add $9 million to the mission of the Foundation. 

In addition to extending its annual support, the Archdiocese recently made a gift of $1 million to the permanent endowment of the Foundation, the earnings from which will provide further tuition assistance to Catholic school families in perpetuity.

The Most Reverend Joseph E. Kurtz, D. D., Archbishop of Louisville and Foundation Board Vice Chair, commented, “The Catholic Education Foundation’s growing impact on families and our community is resounding and I couldn’t be more proud to be a part of this great mission. This new commitment by all my fellow priests speaks to our steadfast belief in Catholic education and its importance in shaping the lives of young students and their families. We are deeply committed to making this life-changing experience accessible to everyone!”

Foundation President Richard A. Lechleiter remarked, “All of us here at the Catholic Education Foundation are completely overjoyed! What a beacon of hope for a family who yearns for a Catholic education but can’t make the journey by themselves! We are indeed humbled by the amazing kindness and generosity of Archbishop Kurtz and our clergy. Because of all of you, now more than ever before, we can say with confidence to all our families in need – “The Answer is YES!”

Superintendent of Schools for the Archdiocese of Louisville, Dr. Mary Beth Bowling, noted, “The future of Catholic education in the Archdiocese of Louisville is so promising for families who want this pathway for their children. And this commitment creates a renewed sense of mission to provide the best spiritual, academic and extracurricular experience to our students and their families. What could be better!”

Foundation Board Chair Charles J. Dahlem rejoiced, “What a historic day for the Catholic Education Foundation of Louisville! And what a day it is for all our Catholic school families who need us, both now and in the future! How truly grateful we are. To Archbishop Kurtz and all his fellow priests, you’re THE BEST!”

About the Catholic Education Foundation:
For over 200 years, Catholic schools have contributed significantly to the social, spiritual and economic fabric of our entire community. The Catholic Education Foundation is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization dedicated to the growth and vitality of Catholic education in the Archdiocese of Louisville. Since 1999, the Foundation has awarded over $42 million in support of Catholic education. Visit the Foundation at