As a Franciscan friar, the way Brother Edward Coughlin ‘66 lived his life made him a beloved figure in the lives of thousands, bringing grace and humility to world around him and embodying the idea of being a servant leader.
The President of Siena College and a leader in the Holy Name Province, Brother Ed’s devotion to Franciscan values started during his four years at Timon. He was one of seven kids in the family that lived only a block away from Timon.
Brother Ed died following a complication in surgery on July 30, 2019. He was 71.
His life was the very embodiment of what it means to be a Timon man.
“He was a ‘Franciscan brother’ to all,” said Franciscan Provincial Minster Kevin Mullen, OFM. “Whether meeting him for the first time or renewing a long-standing relationship, Ed was your ‘brother.’ Like St. Francis, he met you as an equal and immediately affirmed your dignity and worth. As a brother, he worked hard to advance your well-being. We will dearly miss our brother – Ed Coughlin – but if we follow his good example, his legacy will live on and continue to transform our world.”
RIGHT: Edward Coughlin, as a Bishop Timon senior, 1966.
In their brother’s memory, the Coughlin Family has asked that we create a fund in Brother Ed’s memory to help inspire the next generation of Franciscan men of conviction and compassion.
It wasn’t easy for the Coughlin family to pay for Brother Ed’s schooling at St. Bonaventure, but their sacrifices have been returned many times over with the love created in the wake of Brother Ed’s ministry across five decades.
The Brother Edward Coughlin Financial Aid Fund will help defray the cost to attend Timon for those who need it most, and advance the Franciscan Mission by bringing it to life in the hearts of our young men.
You may make a gift in memory of Brother Ed by clicking this link or by sending a check to Brother Edward Coughlin Financial Aid Fund c/o Bishop Timon - St. Jude High School, 601 McKinley Pkwy., Buffalo, NY 14220.
Read more about the life of Brother Ed:
Brother F. Edward Coughlin, 71, president of Siena College was South Buffalo native
Siena College president Edward Coughlin dies at 71
University, friar communities mourn death of Siena President Br. Ed Coughlin
Siena College’s president recalled for commitment, ‘servant leadership’
Siena College President Edward Coughlin Dies
Remembering Br. Ed
Brother Ed and fellow Timon alum Ted Overdorf '60 representing Timon at a Siena College reunion earlier this year.
Brother Francis Edward Coughlin, OFM, 71, a professed Franciscan friar for 47 years, died on July 30, 2019, at Strong Hospital in Rochester following heart surgery on July 23.
Known as Brother Ed, throughout his life, he served in leadership roles bringing the Franciscan Mission and Intellectual Tradition to life most recently as president of Siena College in Loudonville.
Brother Ed was born on July 2, 1948, in Buffalo to James and Margaret (nee McGuire) Coughlin. After graduating from Bishop Timon High School in Buffalo, he earned a bachelor's degree in sociology in 1970 from St. Bonaventure University.
He was received into the Franciscan Order on September 6, 1970, in Lafayette, N.J., professing first vows on August 29, 1971, in Brookline, Mass. and solemn vows on October 18, 1974, at St. Bonaventure University. He held a master's degree from Boston College and a Ph.D. from The Catholic University of America.
Throughout his ministerial life Brother Ed exemplified servant leadership throughout his Franciscan life, initially at St. Bonaventure University, in the Counseling Center and as a faculty member in the School of Education from 1974 until 1977.
In 1977, he began serving in a variety of leadership roles for the Franciscan Holy Name Province and the Order of Friars Minor beginning at St. Anne's Parish in Fair Lawn, N.J., as director of the Province's pre-novitiate formation program and in 1978 at the novitiate in Brookline, with novices and eventually at St. Francis Friary in Manhattan.
He also served as director of initial formation, delegate to the Plenary Council of the Order of Friars Minor (Brazil), general visitor to St. John the Baptist Province (Cincinnati), and director of ministerial development and planning, among others including many terms as provincial councilor.
Returning to St. Bonaventure, from 1991 to 1996 he served as director of The Franciscan Institute before returning to Manhattan in 1996 as secretary of Holy Name Province. In 2005, Brother Ed was named vice president for Franciscan Mission at S.B.U., teaching in the Franciscan Institute until 2014 when he was named the 11th president of Siena College overseeing marked successes in new academic programming, enrollment and marketing, fundraising and facility enhancement.
A popular author and editor he presented at academic and pastoral conferences across the United States and around the world including Europe, Asia, South America and Africa. He served on numerous boards of directors and trustees including Siena, S.B.U., Bishop Timon, Association of Franciscan Colleges and Universities, and St. Francis Friends of the Poor.
His passion was introducing people to the Franciscan Tradition especially through pilgrimages to Franciscan Italy, his most recent with his extended family in June 2019. Brother Ed is survived by a brother, Joseph (Lisa); four sisters, Anne (Tom) Devine, Kathleen (Mike) Lynch, Mary (Marty) Quinn, and Sheila (Stan) Pingelski; twelve nieces and nephews and three grandnieces and nephews. His parents and brother Timothy predeceased him.
Obsequies were held in the St. Bonaventure University Chapel, Allegany, N.Y., where Brother Ed was an alumnus, trustee, professor and administrator.