The Toronto School of Theology (TST) is pleased to announce the appointment of Rev. Dr. Darren Dias, O.P., as the new Executive Director of TST. Dr. Dias, an Associate Professor of Systematic Theology at the University of St. Michael’s College Faculty of Theology, assumes his duties on September 1, 2022.
“Dr. Dias is a firm believer in the ecumenical mandate of the Toronto School of Theology and will offer strong leadership to our unique consortium of theologates,” says Rev. Dr. George Smith, CSB, who is Chair of TST’s Board of Trustees. “The board was unanimous in its decision and I am pleased to welcome him to TST.”
The first Faculty member from St. Michael’s to hold the position, Dr. Dias’s appointment to TST comes as the federation of St. Michael’s and Regis College is launched, a new venture in TST’s 52-year history, notes Regis-St. Michael’s Dean, Jaroslav Skira.
“This is a positive development for all,” says Dr. Skira. “Having such a valued colleague at the helm, with demonstrated leadership skills, an international academic profile and who knows both Regis and St. Michael’s so well, will help TST navigate this new undertaking.”
A member of St. Michael’s Faculty of Theology since 2008, Dr. Dias earned his doctorate under the supervision of Prof. Robert M. Doran at St. Michael’s, where he received the Governor General’s Gold Medal for Academic Excellence. Dr. Dias’ current research and publications revolves around interreligious dialogue, relations and anticolonialism.
Currently the President of the Canadian Theological Society, he is also now working on a project with Dr. Stephan Van Erp, funded by a Templeton Foundation grant, entitled Metaphysics of Contemplation: Lie and Form of Thought.
As a member of St. Michael’s Faculty, Dr. Dias has taken on numerous administrative roles. At TST, he has served on the Basic Degree Council and the Graduate Studies Council. He also serves on the University of Toronto Faculty Association’s Gender and Equity Committee. In addition, Dr. Dias serves on various ecclesial leadership roles and committees.
“I would also like to take this time to extend my sincere thanks to Dr. Pamela Couture, who served as TST’s Executive Director during the extraordinary circumstances created by the COVID-19 pandemic. We are grateful for all she has brought to the position,” says Dr. Smith.
Dr. Couture, who has held the Jane and Geoffrey Martin Chair in Church and Community at Emmanuel College since 2010, assumed the role of TST’s Executive Director in 2020.
The Toronto School of Theology, founded in 1970, is a consortium of seven theological schools, each accredited by the Association of Theological Schools in the United States and Canada. Academic standards are consistent with those of the University of Toronto, which is regularly ranked among the top 25 research universities in the world.
TST's seven member colleges are: Emmanuel College (United Church of Canada), Knox College (Presbyterian Church in Canada), Regis College (Roman Catholic: Jesuit), St. Augustine's Seminary (Roman Catholic: Diocesan), University of St. Michael's College, Faculty of Theology (Roman Catholic: Basilian), University of Trinity College, Faculty of Divinity (Anglican), and Wycliffe College (Anglican, Evangelical).
In addition, TST has connections with three affiliated member institutions: Conrad Grebel University College (Mennonite) at the University of Waterloo, the Institute of Christian Studies (Christian Reformed) in Toronto, and NAIITS: An Indigenous Learning Community, based from Prince Edward Island.
The TST consortium offers a full range of professional and academic degrees. Some are primarily professional while others are oriented to general theological studies or research. All degree programs operate at the post-baccalaureate level, and a number of degrees are conferred conjointly by the University of Toronto.