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Paying Tribute to La Roche University President Candace Introcaso, CDP, Ph.D.

Sister Candace Introcaso, CDP, Ph.D., seventh president of La Roche University, died unexpectedly on May 22, 2023. The seventh president of La Roche University, Sister Candace was a member of the Congregation of the Sisters of Divine Providence, the order that founded La Roche University in 1963, and had been a member of the La Roche University Board of Trustees since 2001.

“The La Roche University community is heartbroken. We have lost our leader, our mentor and our friend,” said Howard J. Ishiyama, Ph.D., acting president and provost for La Roche University. “We are remembering Sister Candace for her caring nature, her efficient and direct leadership and her love of life.

“She was an academic scholar who took pride in seeing students succeed. She loved the La Roche community and the Sisters and Associates of the Congregation of Divine Providence,” he added. “In her personal life she was happiest cheering for the Pittsburgh Pirates and caring for her two dogs, Jack and PJ. Her spirit will live on at the University.”

President Introcaso came to La Roche with a wide range of experience in higher education administration, a firm commitment to diversity, and a strong belief that the mission of institutions founded by women religious is important to the landscape of American higher education.

“We have lost a treasured member of our community,” added Sister Michele Bisbey, CDP, Ph.D., provincial for the Congregation of the Sisters of Divine Providence. “Sister Candace distinguished herself through her belief in the importance of institutions founded by women religious in American higher education. She served our largest ministry with integrity, compassion and a commitment to making higher education available to all students, traditional and nontraditional, regardless of their ability to pay.

“Her impact will be felt through La Roche graduates engaged in the arts, sciences and particularly in healthcare for a generation to come,” she continued. “Sister Candace exemplified what it means to be a woman of providence.”

Before being appointed to the La Roche University presidency, Sister Candace served as vice president for planning and assessment at Barry University in Miami Shores, FL. Prior to joining Barry University, she was assistant vice president for academic affairs from 1997 to 1999 at Heritage College, located on the Yakama Indian reservation in Toppenish, WA.

While pursuing her doctoral studies from 1991 to 1996 at The Claremont Graduate University in Claremont, California, she held a number of part-time positions including acting Catholic chaplain for The Claremont Colleges, administrative intern in the Office of the President of California State University-San Marcos, and lecturer in the Department of Anthropology/Sociology at Pomona College. From 1986 to 1991, President Introcaso worked La Roche University, first as director of grants and subsequently as assistant to the vice president for student affairs.

President Introcaso received her Ph.D. in higher education administration from The Claremont Graduate University, where she received the Hausam-Fisk Award for Excellence in Higher Education. She also held an M.A. in sociology from Fordham University (New York) and a B.A. in psychology from Shippensburg University (Pennsylvania).

President Introcaso was a board director of the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center-Passavant/St. Margaret in Pittsburgh, PA; a member of the University of Pittsburgh’s Institute of Politics Criminal Justice Taskforce; and has been a member and has served as president of the Presidents’ Council of the Pittsburgh Council on Higher Education.

She was honored with the Passavant Foundation Legacy of Caring Award in 2018 and was a 2016 winner of the Pittsburgh Magazine and S&T Bank Women and Business Award; 2014 winner of the Pittsburgh Business Times Business Women First Award, as well as its Diamond Award, presented to the top business leaders in the Pittsburgh region.

Funeral Arrangements

The public is invited to join the Sisters of Divine Providence and La Roche University in celebrating the life and legacy of Sister Candace Introcaso, CDP, Ph.D. (1953-2023).


Friday, May 26, 2023

2 to 4 p.m. and 6 to 8 p.m.

Visitation Chapel

The Commons at Providence Heights

Those fully vaccinated are welcome.

Mass of Resurrection

Saturday, May 27, 2023

11 a.m.

Visitation Chapel

The Commons at Providence Heights

Those fully vaccinated are welcome.

Live Stream:

Burial will follow in the Sisters’ Cemetery.

Memorial Mass Honoring the Legacy of President Introcaso

Wednesday, May 31, 2023

11 a.m.

Mother of Divine Providence Chapel

(located in the former motherhouse)

Facebook Live Stream:

Luncheon Following Memorial Mass

Zappala Campus Center, La Roche University

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