Malden Catholic Announces Major Campus Expansion To Support Growing Student Population and Enhance Academic and Athletic Programs

Special to the Times-Free Press

Malden Catholic (MC) announced major expansion plans for its academic and athletic programs. By partnering with Timberline Construction and Scalora Consulting Group, MC broke ground on May 9, for a state-of-the-art academic and athletic facility located across the street from Malden Catholic at 50 Crystal Street. This expansion will introduce a 7th and 8th grade program, tentatively scheduled to open for students in September 2025, pending any unforeseen delays or adjustments. MC will accept 100 students in its 7th grade and 100 students in its 8th grade. This development aims to build upon the remarkable 40% growth in enrollment observed over the past five years and the success of MC’s codivisional model. Next year’s high school enrollment is anticipated to surpass 900 students.

President John Thornburg made the announcement during Malden Catholic’s 18th Annual Gala Celebration on April 6th, unveiling the launch of the capital campaign, Our Essential Future – A Campaign for Malden Catholic.

“We are excited to announce the first major campus expansion since Malden Catholic relocated to Crystal Street more than 55 years ago—a milestone moment that will enhance the MC experience for our students, faculty/staff, and the community,” stated Thornburg.

“In addition to expanding and modernizing our campus, we are advancing our mission by extending the Xaverian Brothers’ educational experience to 7th and 8th grade students. This expansion will lay a strong foundation, facilitating the transition into MC’s college-preparatory high school programs. When I accepted this position at Malden Catholic five years ago, I was excited about our growth potential due to our unique codivisional model and the Board’s decision to invest in a 1.6-acre property across the street. This announcement marks the next major phase in realizing our vision to grow our remarkable school. As we embark on this next chapter in the MC story, we are grateful to our many supporters, including our dear friend, mentor, and generous benefactor, the late Joe O’Donnell ’62, who served as Co-Chair of the campaign before his passing in January 2024.”

The 70,000 square foot building will include cutting-edge classrooms and lab spaces, a spacious dining hall and modern office facilities to support administrative needs and student services. The athletic facility will include a 30,000 square-foot indoor turf field, a 6,000 square-foot basketball    court, wellness center and weight room. The Biomedical Engineering lab will facilitate the addition of more biomedical classes within MC’s Project Lead the Way Program. Dedicated classrooms for Entrepreneurship and Financial Literacy will also be added to expand the growth of MC’s Business Program.

The capital campaign – Our Essential Future – A Campaign for Malden Catholic – has a goal of $40 million, which will serve to fund construction at 50 Crystal Street and increase scholarship support for students. The campaign is off to a strong start with impressive support from the MC community.

The Our Essential Future Campaign recognizes the combined 180 years of outstanding educational services and faith formation provided to students from Malden and surrounding communities by the School Sisters of Notre Dame and the Xaverian Brothers. It aims to ensure that future generations will have the opportunity for an exceptional Catholic high school experience at Malden Catholic.

Jim and Bev Donovan, long-time benefactors to the school, have provided a $5 million lead gift to the Campaign. Jim, who served for over 20 years as a Trustee at MC, including the last 10 years as Board Chair, will now serve as Co-Chair of the Campaign. He has been instrumental in every major strategic initiative during his tenure and played a crucial role in formulating plans for the campus expansion.

In a statement, Jim Donovan expressed his hopes: “As non-graduates, Bev and I hope our lead gift inspires the many thousands of men and women privileged to hold an MC or Girls Catholic diploma. This gift honors my father’s service to the school as a custodian in the 50s and 60s, where he mentored many students and was a beloved friend and confidant of many Xaverian Brothers. It also honors my sister Elaine’s service as a School Sister of Notre Dame. We strongly believe that the young men and women of Malden, Medford, Everett, Revere, and the surrounding communities served by MC deserve the best educational platform and athletic facilities, and that the campus expansion at 50 Crystal Street will be truly transformative for them. It is our hope that the entire MC community will join us in making this a reality.”

For more information about 7th and 8th grade enrollment at 50 Crystal Street and additional details about Our Essential Future – A Campaign for Malden Catholic, please visit the campaign website at

Malden Catholic would like to thank the following individuals for their invaluable contributions to the success of Our Essential Future – A Campaign for Malden Catholic:

Malden Catholic Advancement Team: Sean Hurley ’97, CFO/VP of Advancement, Robert McCarthy P’07, Senior Director of Advancement and Strategic Partnerships, Gregory Maynard, Director of Major Gifts, Strategic Initiatives and Planned Giving, Sarah Hamilton, Esq., P’22, Director of Annual Gifts and Operations

Honorary Campaign Chairs: Dr. Eugene F. Fama ’56 and Sallyann (Dimeco) GC’56 and Ted Legasey ’63 and Tricia (McNamara) GC’63

Campaign Co-Chairs: Joseph J. O’Donnell ’62 and James R. Donovan Hon’11

Board Chair: Mason S. Tenaglia ’74

Malden Catholic President: John K. Thornburg

Campaign Steering Committee: Patricia McWade GC’65, Rosemary (Boland) Phalen GC’69, Richard L. Sumberg ’64, Brian J. Walsh ’84 P’16, ’18, ’20

Campaign Leadership Committee: Mark T. Cannon ’73, Richard F. Connolly, Jr. ’57, Alicia Cooney P’21, Paul T. Fitzgerald, Esq. ’81, Joseph J. Keough ’88, Daniel J. Lawler ’84, Daniel Passacantilli ’90, Mark J. Sullivan ’83

Parent Leadership Committee: Stephen J. Byrne ’95, P’24, ’26, Benjamin Marino P’22, ’24, Colleen McGlynn Moody P’24, Craig Spadafora ’91, P’26, ’27, Peter Van Dorpe P’27

Since 1932, Malden Catholic High School has shaped emerging leaders in our community, claiming a Nobel Laureate, a Senator, two ambassadors and countless community and business heads among its alumni. Annually, graduates attend some of the nation’s most renown universities including Harvard, Princeton, Dartmouth, University of Chicago, Georgetown, Cornell, Brown, Tufts, Carnegie Mellon, Duke, Notre Dame, Northeastern, Boston College and College of the Holy Cross. Foundational to student success is Malden Catholic’s codivisional model which offers the best of both worlds, single-gender academics during the day and integrated social and extracurricular opportunities after school. Malden Catholic is known in the community for its rigorous academics, SFX Scholars Program and award-winning STEM program. Malden Catholic curricula is designed to improve individual growth mindset, leadership principles and success outcomes along with integrating the Xaverian values of trust, humility, compassion, simplicity and zeal.

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