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The Roches

The Barbara and Patrick Roche Center for Catholic Education

Barbara and Patrick Roche

In March of 2010 long-time friends of Boston College Barbara and Patrick Roche ’51, H ’01, donated $20 million to the Center for Catholic Education which was later named in their honor.

Patrick E. Roche, co-founder of Roche Brothers supermarkets, passed away on May 27, 2012 at the age 83.

The couple said they made the transformative gift because Catholic education had such a profound effect on their lives, and Mr. Roche was a graduate of the college.

"Catholic education was a great gift in my life,” said the late Patrick Roche. “When Barbara and I saw the number of Catholic schools that were closing, we wanted to do something--BC gave us an opportunity to do so through this Center." 

Headquartered in Wellesley, Roche Bros. has 18 Massachusetts locations from Burlington to Cape Cod. Barbara and Patrick Roche are natives of Boston and ardent supporters of Catholic Education.

The Roches are noted philanthropists to worthy causes, including Catholic and public education, the Annual Appeal of the Archdiocese of Boston, the American Ireland Fund, the Parkway Boys and Girls Club, food pantries, elder assistance programs, and more. At BC, they established the Patrick E. and Barbara A. Roche Scholarship Fund for talented students with financial need, and the Barbara A. and Patrick E. Roche Chair in Economics, an endowed professorship currently held by Professor Arthur Lewbel. 

Mrs. Roche currently resides in Marshfield, Massachusetts and has two sons Rick and Ed, and two grandchildren.