The Fitz Center for Leadership in Community is proudly named after Brother Raymond L. Fitz, S.M., Ph.D., the longest-serving president in the University of Dayton’s history. After Brother Ray stepped down as President in 2002, the Fitz Center was created by combining two existing centers, Strategies for Responsible Development/INCLUD and the Social Science Research Center/Center for the Study of Family Development.
The Fitz Center is built on sustained relationships with dozens of neighborhood, community nonprofit and government organizations and associations and serves as a connecting point and campus-wide partner for community partnerships, leadership, community-engaged learning and scholarship, and innovative solution-based strategies to civic needs through an asset based approach. From its beginnings, the Fitz Center remains grounded in the University of Dayton’s Catholic Marianist values of preference for marginalized people, reciprocal relationships, and shared dialogue for vital community-engaged leadership.
Over the past fourteen years, backed by a strategic commitment from the University and support from alumni, donors, community leaders, corporations, nonprofits, neighborhood leaders, Montgomery County, and the City of Dayton, the Fitz Center has continued Brother Ray’s legacy with collaboration, leadership, and creation of community-based and neighborhood partnerships. As an anchor institution, the University of Dayton is committed to its surrounding community through engaged education, integral partnerships, and a shared voice for strengthening the City.