Cristo Rey Baton Rouge Franciscan High has named as its new president the head of a nonprofit group that helps host sports events throughout the region.
Eric Engemann, of SportsBR, Inc., is the third leader of this unique Catholic school, which opened in 2016 on the site of the former Redemptorist High School in north Baton Rouge. He starts work Monday.
“Eric’s leadership experience, community relationships, strong demonstration of the values of St. Francis and work ethic, and his commitment to the school’s mission position him well to be the next leader of Cristo Rey,” Cristo Rey’s board chairman, Bryan Jones, said in a news release announcing Engemann's appointment.
Engemann has been president and chief executive officer of SportsBR since January 2017, and has worked for the organization since 2007. Engemannn also served since 2011 on the faculty of LSU's School of Kinesiology.
As it wraps up its second year in operation, Cristo Rey Franciscan High School is searching for the second time for someone to lead the unique…
Engemann replaces Brian Moscona, who left at the end of the 2017-18 school year after 14 months at the helm to take over as principal of another Catholic school in Baton Rouge, St. Thomas More.
Moscona in turn replaced founding Cristo Rey president James Llorens, a former Southern University chancellor, after Llorens resigned two months after the school opened.
Engemann said in a news release that he was looking forward to serving "the students and families of this transformational school.”
He said he'll "adhere to the school’s mission to create and sustain a strong academic, professional and spiritual foundation for our students that will serve them well beyond their time at Cristo Rey.”
A native of Pointe Coupee Parish, Engemann has a B.A. in History and MBA from LSU. He also has a master's degree in education from Xavier University in Cincinnati.
At Cristo Rey, students work full time at least one day a week for a white collar employer to help pay tuition. Those employers in turn pay the school the salary the students earn to help offset their tuition. Cristo Rey, which began in Chicago in 1996, now has 35 schools operating in 22 states. The Baton Rouge school is its only in Louisiana.
A week after it opened in August 2016, Cristo Rey flooded. It spent its first 17 months in temporary space provided by the Baton Rouge Area Foundation. In the meantime, the old Redemptorist high school was leveled and Cristo Rey built a temporary campus at 4000 St. Gerard Ave. It has plans to eventually build a permanent campus on the property.