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A Letter from President Bill Henson

Bill Henson announces his retirement as CRB President

January 24, 2024

Dear Friends, Colleagues and Supporters of Cristo Rey Brooklyn HS,

For the past few weeks, the readings at Mass have revolved around the theme of vocation. In the Catholic tradition vocation means more than a job or occupation. It comes from and points us to something deeper, more meaningful, and likely more challenging; it is also life-changing, and ultimately, life-giving. My involvement these last 13 years at Cristo Rey Brooklyn High School (11 as President, 2 as Vice Chair/Senior Advisor) has been a vocation in every sense of the word. 

And so it is with very mixed feelings that I share with you the news that as of July, at the end of the academic and fiscal year, I will be retiring as the President of Cristo Rey Brooklyn High School. It has been a blessing to serve this community and it has been the honor of a lifetime, including and especially the last two years. My CRB experience ranks as among, if not, the most rewarding in a professional career spanning nearly five decades. 

From barely more than 100 students when I first arrived to over 1000 alumni and students today, from being a tenant in a small former elementary school to owning a full-fledged high school facility a decade later, from overcoming the impact of the Great Recession in our start-up years to now putting the potentially existential consequences of the Pandemic in the rear view mirror, Cristo Rey Brooklyn is living testimony to the words of Father John Foley, Founder of the Cristo Rey Network, when he reminds us that "Our mission is to... not merely make things slightly better, but to effect transformational change at every level." And that change, those outcomes would not have been possible at Cristo Rey Brooklyn if not for the incredible community of students, families, staff, alumni, trustees, volunteers, Corporate Work Study partners and countless donors I have been blessed to work with and benefit from these past 13 years. Thank you! 

Simultaneous with this announcement we are beginning the search to recruit a new President worthy of the job, the mission and this very special community. Longtime Director Dan Geoghan is chairing the Presidential Search Committee consisting of several directors, Brian Melton from the Cristo Rey Network, along with other CRB staff and supporters. Under Dan's leadership, it is an impressive team, fully committed to recruiting the most qualified and dedicated individual possible to grow and extend the foundation and success that our faculty, staff, board and so many others have built these past 15 years in service of our truly deserving young people and families. 

As you may know, I regularly end my emails and letters with the simple phrase "with gratitude." Never have I felt that term more appropriate than now. 

With gratitude,

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