St. Mary’s community speaks about Tom and Mona Mengler’s tenure

November 27, 2023

Best regards

by Nathaniel Miller

As Thomas M. Mengler, J.D., prepares to retire as the 13th president of St. Mary’s University, those who worked closest with him share their thoughts on the mirthful nature, optimistic outlook and discerning leadership that he brought to the University along with his wife, Mona Mengler.

Leti and Tom Contreras enjoy The Pub at St. Mary's University.
From left, Leticia “Leti” Contreras (B.A. ’89) and Thomas “Tom” Contreras (B.B.A. ’88)

“Tom and Mona are a great team, and the bonds that they created extend far beyond the walls of the University.”

Leticia “Leti” Contreras (B.A. ’89)

— Charles T. Barrett Jr. (B.B.A. ’62), left, and his wife, Melissa Barrett

“We’re going to miss Tom’s charm, his constant contact and easy availability. If you ever needed something, he would get it accomplished.”

Charles T. Barrett Jr. (B.B.A. ’62)

The Rev. Oscar Vasquez, S.M.

“It has been a joy to work with President Mengler because of his great passion for St. Mary’s University; Catholic and Marianist education; care for students, faculty and staff; and service to the Catholic Church.”

The Rev. Oscar Vasquez, S.M.

“Many characteristics come to mind when I think about President Mengler: integrity, justice, compassion, kindness and presence.”

Carolyn Tubbs, Ph.D.


“You can’t compliment Tom without complimenting his wife, Mona. They’ve developed relationships in the local community and have been active in both local and national organizations on behalf of St. Mary’s. They did more than just embrace St. Mary’s; they embraced San Antonio.”

Michael “Mickey” Schott (B.B.A. ’68)

“Tom was steadfast in his determination that the University’s and each school’s strategic plans be connected to our Marianist
mission and Catholic values. His legacy will be felt long after his departure in every corner of the University.”

Patricia Roberts, J.D.

“As a direct recipient of Tom’s leadership and guidance, I have witnessed firsthand the care and stewardship Tom has brought to the presidency. Regardless of the situation, Tom has always provided steady leadership, even in times of significant tumult.”

Aaron Hanna (B.A. ’10, M.P.A. ’11, M.B.A. ’13)

Read more about President Thomas M. Mengler's tenure at St. Mary's University

Board Chair reflects on President Tom Mengler’s tenure

Nearly a dozen years of visionary leadership and unwavering dedication have reshaped St. Mary’s University under the guidance of President Thomas M. Mengler, J.D.

Retiring President Thomas M. Mengler leaves lasting mark

Over the course of 12 years, Thomas Mengler — the second most famous face of St. Mary's behind Rattler Man — shared his vision of expanding the University’s Catholic and Marianist traditions.

Outgoing president’s faith touted as benefit to University

Since being selected as the University’s 13th president, Thomas Mengler’s goal has been to make St. Mary’s not just a top-notch Catholic institution in the Southwest, but a premier university where people can “revitalize and expand” what makes exceptional Catholics and servant leaders.

Integrating Catholic Intellectual Tradition helps students become critical thinkers

Focusing on educating students to think beyond themselves, the core curriculum is instrumental to giving them a liberal arts education integrated with Catholic and Marianist values.

Big grants and revamped career services enhance the student experience

Through grants and a realigned career services office, the University’s faculty and staff continuously look to improve the college experience, give hands-on learning opportunities and pinpoint a vocation that aligns with students’ passions.

Mengler’s steadfast work helps The Defining Moment Comprehensive Campaign reach new heights

The success of St. Mary’s University’s largest campaign didn’t happen without President Thomas M. Mengler, J.D., logging thousands of miles, shaking hundreds of hands and emphatically sharing a vision about the future of its campus and schools.

Presidential duo creates 12 memorable years at St. Mary’s helm

Since 2012, Tom and Mona Mengler have embraced St. Mary's University, the Marianist charism and San Antonio. The couple shares their thoughts on what the University's community has meant to them.

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