The Mary Ann Spearin Chair in Catholic Theology recognizes a distinguished scholar who has made significant contributions to theological explorations related to U.S. Catholicism.
The Chair's major responsibilities involve teaching doctoral seminars and directing student research in the Ph.D. program in Theology which has as its focus, the U.S. Catholic Experience. The Chair in Catholic Theology is the culmination of many years of planning that revolved around the development of the Ph.D. Program in Catholic Theology at the University of Dayton. The chair helps to fulfill a vision of a Department of Religious Studies that defines UD as a national leader in Catholic Higher Education. Dr. William Portier, formerly the Henry J. Knott Professor of Theology, Mount Saint Mary’s College, Emmitsburg, Maryland, is the first to hold the Mary Ann Spearin Chair in Catholic Theology.