Dr. Richard Ludwick

We have often thought of ourselves as a small light. The University of St. Thomas is a light, yes, but it is not small. That is not our destiny.

Dr. Richard Ludwick President, University of St. Thomas

Dr. Ludwick became the ninth president of the University of St. Thomas on July 1, 2017.

In his inauguration speech, he noted “Ours is an open university that welcomes people of all faith and people of no faith. It is because we are Catholic that we must reach out to others of goodwill. We will be leaders in our location, the greater Houston area, and we will be leaders beyond."

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Undergraduate students walking on campus at University of St. Thomas in Houston, TexasWelcome!

You were made for greatness and have all kinds of talent and potential! No matter where you are in your journey, St. Thomas’s unique mix of friendliness, innovation and Catholic intellectual tradition will help you bring your special gifts to full flourish. As a member of our Celt community, for a day visit or a lifetime, you will feel what it’s like to Be your bold self! Each Celt builds special bonds with others through an intense formation that readies and rallies us together. As a Celt, you will take on the world for positive change today and help shape its tomorrow.

The best way to see yourself here is to be here. Come visit us! Our campus is stunningly beautiful because of our people. You’ll fit right in – everybody does. The physical campus is gorgeous. Architects from around the globe visit UST’s award-winning academic quad and Chapel of St. Basil. You might even meet one when you’re here.

Don’t let our location – quiet, beautiful, residential and just next door to the Museum District – fool you. Our immediate neighborhood is full of the hottest restaurants, cafes, and popups anywhere. Campus is alive with activity: daily liturgies, NCAA athletics, theatre, concerts, lectures. And always remember Wonderful Wednesdays! (Yes, that’s a thing.) Don’t forget, you have Houston just off campus. The new Innovation Corridor is becoming part of campus.

You know a university experience is more than just getting a degree. It’s a way you determine who you will be. It helps you do what you want to do. As a Celt alumnus/alumna, you can go anywhere and do anything. The difference is that by choosing to Be your bold self, you will know and feel what it’s like to be connected to the rest of our human family in a way that transcends the skills you learn, the degrees you earn and the work you do. Crescamus in Christo!

With hope and joy,

Catch up with Dr. Ludwick on “Fearlessly Forward,” the president’s blog. Stay current with the latest campus announcements, updates on our Call Toward Tomorrow initiatives, and much more.

Visit the Blog

Artist rendering of Chapel of St. Basil gold dome looking out to downtown Houston, TexasThe Call Toward Tomorrow, an integrated planning process. It unites Celts in the creation of a vibrant new roadmap for the future of the University of St. Thomas. Nationally renowned strategists, led by UST alumnus, Deacon Larry Vaclavik ’78, ’94, ’04, are spearheading a planning process that will move us forward over the next few years with confidence, direction and purpose. We will develop a bold, transformational, and durable vision, shaping how we conceive the promise ahead for decades in the life of the University of St. Thomas.

I propose a new way forward, a “culture of encounter,” as an approach for us — you and me — to be our best with each other. Recognizing that each of us is imbued with gifts to share and to be respected, we can emerge from the clouds of doubt and distrust that can separate and distort our unity. Gone is the fear that stymies growth, initiative, ownership and innovation. In its place is our true nature, friendship, that restores, builds and advances.

Our questions are big ones. They call us to understand the lived reality of students and the pressures of our world, not borne of nostalgia. At the same time, they beckon us to new possibilities, formed from imagination and fearless dreaming. With big answers to big questions and the immutable truths of faith, our vision will sharpen and lead UST to a bold future of unprecedented success.

Thank you in advance for “opting in” together as we discern The Call Toward Tomorrow and build a bright and shining future for the University of St. Thomas.

visit the call toward tomorrow website

University of St. Thomas Houston President Richard L. LudwickRichard L. Ludwick, JD, DEd

Richard L. Ludwick became the 9th president of the University of St. Thomas on July 1, 2017. He previously served as president of the Independent Colleges of Indiana, the nation’s oldest association of 31 private, nonprofit colleges and universities enrolling more than 100,000 students. In that capacity, he led strategic initiatives in public policy at the state and federal levels, spurred innovative, intercollegiate collaborations, and successfully executed multi-million dollar philanthropic campaigns.

Richard served as provost at St. Gregory’s University in Oklahoma before joining ICI. Early in his career, Richard co-founded a law firm in Indiana and later went on to serve institutions of higher learning across the United States, including positions as vice president of enrollment management and student affairs at Albany Law School (Albany, NY); assistant dean for student and academic affairs at the University of Florida’s Fredric G. Levin College of Law (Gainesville); and dean of students at the University of Oregon School of Law (Eugene).

In addition to his Bachelor of Arts in history from the University of Evansville, Richard holds a Master of Arts in higher education administration from Teachers College of Columbia University (New York), Doctor of Jurisprudence from Indiana University’s Robert H. McKinney Law School, and Doctor of Education in policy management and organization of higher education administration from the University of Oregon (Eugene).

Currently, Richard serves as president of the International Council of the Universities of Saint Thomas Aquinas, a global network of institutions dedicated to the spirit of St. Thomas. Richard served as a commissioner for the Midwest Higher Education Compact; chair of the board for the Coalition for College Cost Savings; as a member of the Indiana Chamber’s Business Higher Education Policy Committee; and as a member of the State Councils’ Advisory Committee for the Council of Independent Colleges.

Richard and his wife, Melynda, a pharmacist, have two grown children, Richard III, also a graduate of the University of Evansville, and Christianne, a graduate of Ave Maria University and Butler University respectively. Christianne and husband, Michael Fenzl, have three children, Gabriel, Pia and Benedict.


  • B.A., University of Evansville, History
  • M.A., Teachers College of Columbia University - New York, Higher Education Administration
  • J.D.,  Indiana University’s Robert H. McKinney Law School
  • D.Ed., University of Oregon - Eugene, Policy Management and Organization of Higher Education Administration


Link Lee Mansion on the campus of the University of St. Thomas in Houston, TexasLink-Lee Mansion has belonged to the University of St. Thomas since our founding in 1947. In the University's infancy, it provided space for all functions.

The first floor housed the library, registrar's office and student reading room (pictured). The second floor featured a small chapel, classrooms and offices. The third floor was used for women's physical education and student dances.

Today, the mansion houses administrative offices, hosts special events and remains an integral part of the University's vibrant culture.

Link Lee Mansion on the campus of the University of St. Thomas in Houston, TexasNow more than 100 years old, Link-Lee Mansion also remains an iconic symbol of the University and one of Houston's true architectural masterpieces. In 2001, it was honored as a Recorded Texas Historic Landmark.

A restoration and renovation effort is underway to repair damage to the facility and preserve it for generations to come.