Archbishop Paul S. Coakley was born to John and Mary Coakley in Norfolk, VA in 1955 and lived there with his father, mother and older brother, John, until he was two years old. The family relocated to Metairie, LA where his sister, Mary Christina was born. After beginning his elementary education at St. Mary Magdalen Catholic School the family moved in 1965 to Overland Park, KS. Archbishop Coakley’s secondary education was completed in public schools in Overland Park.
After graduation from high school he attended the University of Kansas where he completed his undergraduate studies in English and Classical Antiquities in 1977. During this period he was a student in KU’s Integrated Humanities Program, where he studied under John Senior, Dennis Quinn and Frank Nelick.
Upon completing university studies Archbishop Coakley traveled in Europe and briefly considered a monastic vocation at the Abbey of Notre Dame de Fontgombault in France, before he returned to begin seminary studies for Diocese of Wichita in 1978.
After completing studies at Mount St. Mary Seminary in Emmitsburg, MD, he was ordained a priest on May 21, 1983. After serving as a priest of the Diocese of Wichita for twenty-one years, he was appointed Bishop of Salina on October 21, 2004. Bishop Coakley was ordained and installed as Bishop of Salina on December 28, 2004.
On December 16, 2010, Bishop Coakley was appointed by Pope Benedict XVI as the fourth Archbishop of the Archdiocese of Oklahoma City. He was installed as Metropolitan Archbishop on February 11, 2011.
Chair of the Day
Chip Carter is the President and CEO of Cristo Rey Oklahoma City Catholic High School, a rigorous private college preparatory high school for families of limited economic means. In its fourth year with 260 students in grades 9-12, Cristo Rey OKC integrates a Corporate Work Study Program with local business that prepares graduates to succeed in college and in life. It is the 33rd school in a national network of 38 schools and is currently located on the campus of OSU-OKC.
Chip has had a varied professional career spanning multiple industries over the past 25-plus years. A veteran of dozens of political campaigns, Chip served on Steve Forbes’ 1996 presidential campaign and was the campaign manager for Oklahoma’s successful Right to Work campaign in 2001. He then moved into real estate development, focusing on the aerospace industry, and later worked in investor relations and public relations.
Chip is a member of the Board of Trustees for the Oklahoma Foundation for Excellence, a member of the Economic Club of Oklahoma, a member of Rotary Club 29, a member of the Board of Advisors for both the Greater Oklahoma City Chamber and the South Oklahoma City Chamber, and is a past President of the Downtown Club of Oklahoma City. He earned his BA in Philosophy from Kenyon College in 1991.
Chip is married to Lori Carter, Deputy First Assistant Attorney General, and they have two children in college and another in high school. He is active at Christ the King Catholic Church, and he enjoys watching his children play sports, going pheasant hunting, and discussing politics.