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Office of News & Public Affairs

$15M Gift Will Fund Cadigan Alumni Center at BC

CHESTNUT HILL, Mass. (5-8-12) — A California real estate investor and former high tech CEO who cites his Jesuit education as a crucial influence in his personal formation and professional success has made a $15 million pledge to name the alumni center at Boston College.

Patrick F. Cadigan
Patrick F. Cadigan

Patrick F. Cadigan, the retired CEO and President of Electronic Engineering Company of California (EECO), says that the discipline and moral training of his Jesuit teachers were factors that helped him, as the son of Irish immigrants who worked part-time at his father’s bar in Cambridge to help pay for his education, to become one of Southern California’s most successful high tech leaders and real estate investors.

His $15 million pledge will result in the June 29 dedication of the Cadigan Alumni Center, a new facility that will house the University’s fundraising, alumni relations and parent relations offices.  The Cadigan Alumni Center will serve as a home-away-from-home for Boston College’s 162,000 alumni—the largest Catholic alumni association in the world--and will play host to volunteer meetings, seminars, alumni events and parent receptions.

“My education at Boston College was a great experience that taught me the importance of hard work, and instilled in me values and discipline that stayed with me throughout my years,” said Cadigan. “The foundation I received left an indelible impression on me, and prepared me for success in business and in life.”

Cadigan Hall
Cadigan Alumni Center at Boston College

Boston College President Rev. William P. Leahy, S.J., praised Cadigan for his generosity in giving back to his alma mater. “Pat Cadigan moved out west as a young man, but never forgot his Boston roots and his affection for Boston College.  We are grateful for his generous support and delighted to have our new alumni center bear his name.”

In addition to his gift to BC, Cadigan has made a $12 million pledge to Boston College High School, from which he graduated in 1952. His gift represents the largest donation in the school’s history and the largest ever received by a Catholic secondary school in New England. With these funds, the school will build Cadigan Hall, a new center for arts and recreation that will provide additional studio space for BC High’s fine and performing arts program and a new gymnasium for its Arrupe middle school division.

After graduating from Boston College in 1957, Cadigan worked as a product manager at Sylvania Electronic Systems in Waltham for five years before being recruited to the West Coast to oversee sales and marketing for EECO.  He rose rapidly to become its president and CEO, running the company for nearly 20 years, and expanding it both nationally and internationally.  After his retirement from EECO, he served on the boards of 15 mainly high tech and electronics firms, serving as chairman and CEO of several public companies, including Gateway Communications, Inc., and Linear Instruments Corp. In addition, Cadigan invested in real estate in Orange County for 40 years, a sideline that became his primary focus upon his retirement from the high tech business world. He is now the largest private real estate holder in Orange County.

In addition to his Jesuit education, Cadigan received an MBA from Boston University, a degree from Harvard University’s Advanced Management Program, and a master’s degree and PhD from Claremont Graduate University where he studied under the late business philosopher Peter Drucker.

“My parents were not able to obtain a formal education, so I felt a very personal responsibility to give back to those wonderful schools that educated and shaped me,” said Cadigan. “Boston College is so well regarded here in California and throughout the country, thanks to the outstanding efforts of BC Chancellor Fr. J. Donald Monan and President Fr. William Leahy. With the Sesquicentennial Celebration forthcoming, it seemed like an ideal time for me to make these commitments to my alma mater. I hope they will be helpful additions that will provide lasting benefits for these outstanding institutions, their students and alumni.”

Cadigan resides in Corona del Mar, Calif., with his wife Dr. Tandra Cadigan, a noted obstetrician/gynecologist.  He is the father of three children: Ann; David, who played professional football for the New York Jets and Cincinnati Bengals; and Maria Cadigan, who graduated from Boston College in 1991. He also has four stepchildren.                      

For more information, visit the Cadigan Alumni Center website.

—Jack Dunn is director of the Office of News & Public Affairs;