Frances M. Maguire

Frances M. Maguire


Frances M. Maguire '14 (Hon), "Frannie", was known for her great talent and passion for the arts. Frannie, with her husband James J. Maguire ’58, was one of the University’s greatest benefactors. Through their jointly established Maguire Foundation, the organization grants hundreds of scholarships to students at every level from grade school through college, connecting them to a faith-and justice-based education.

Frannie began her training studying painting and sculpture at the Cheltenham Art Center. She also studied at the prestigious Vermont Studio Center and the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts (PAFA). Saint Joseph’s is the beneficiary of Frannie’s artistic talents: the Chapel of St. Joseph – Michael J. Smith, S.J., Memorial is home to a bust of Fr. Smith, sculpted and donated to the University by Frannie.


Frances Maguire (center) was a passionate advocate for the arts. In 2018, it was announced that the Frances M. Maguire Art Museum on the grounds of the Barnes Arboretum would be named in her honor.

Frannie Maguire reacts to the new the Barnes building would be renamed in her honor

Along with her husband James J. Maguire ’58, Frances Maguire was awarded an honorary degree during Saint Joseph's 2014 commencement exercises.

The Maguires at a wedding.

The Maguires were the honored guests at the 2017 Mass of the Holy Spirit, which included a celebration of their historic $50 million gift to Saint Joseph's.

In 2016, the Maguires, along with J. Eustace Wolfington ’56 (center), made a generous gift that allowed Saint Joseph's to acquire the former Cardinal's Residence. The main building on the Marcy Dugan Wolfington Campus, as it is now known, was named the Maguire Wolfington Welcome Center, and now serves as the first stop for prospective students visiting SJU.

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In 2018, on the heels of Jim and Frannie’s history-making $50 million gift to SJU, the famed gallery at the Barnes Foundation was named the Frances M. Maguire Art Museum to honor her as an accomplished artist and arts advocate. In 2014, the University awarded Frannie and Jim honorary Doctor of Public Service degrees for their work to advance social justice and education. "Her passion for the arts and her investment in the success of young men and women have built a legacy that will live on." said President Mark C. Reed.

Saint Joseph’s joins with many other institutions in mourning Frannie’s passing. She was a proud graduate of Gwynedd Mercy University, and also made the largest alumni gift in the university’s history. The Frances M. Maguire School of Nursing at Gwynedd Mercy is a tribute to her father, a surgeon and her mother, a nurse.

Additionally, she was an ardent supporter of the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, serving on the Board of Trustees. PAFA’s Samuel M.V. Hamilton Building is now known as “The Frances M. Maguire Gallery in Honor of the PAFA Faculty.”

Frannie also served on the boards of the Woodmere Art Museum and the Academy of Children’s Music, was a volunteer for the Philadelphia Museum of Art’s Blind Artist Program and was named a judge emeritus of the Garden Club of America.

Saint Joseph will continue to celebrate the life of  Frannie, a devoted wife, mother and grandmother and passionate advocate for education and the arts.