John P. Courtney: Continuing a Canisius Education

When John (Jack) P. Courtney ’58 came to Canisius, it marked the beginning of his long history with the college – and one that now lives on in perpetuity via the John P. Courtney ’58 Family Business Scholarship.

Courtney’s children recently established the endowed scholarship. It will be awarded to a student, from either Bishop Timon-St. Jude High School (Courtney’s alma mater) or a city of Buffalo high school, who plans to study business administration and demonstrates financial need. The scholarship carries with it the wisdom and legacy of compassion that is so inherent in Courtney.

The eldest of eight children, Courtney went to work when he was just a boy. He married young, started a family and maintained a full-time job while going to school at Canisius. Courtney’s education, coupled with his strong work ethic, led him from Bethlehem Steel and laying tar on the streets of Buffalo to Computer Task Group. During his tenure, Courtney worked his way up from senior technical consultant to president and chief operating officer of the multi-million dollar IT service and solutions provider.

However, his sphere of influence ranges well beyond the business world.

Courtney and his wife, Patricia, have been an unstoppable team in the community. They provided leadership and helped bring Jesuit values to life through their fundamental support of Hospice, Haven House, Housing Opportunities Made Equal and the Neighborhood Information Center.

Canisius College is also a grateful beneficiary of Jack Courtney. He shared his business acumen and expertise as a member of the Board of Trustees and Regents. In 2008, Courtney established the John P. Courtney ’58 Finance Department Endowment. He was also a major contributor to last year’s renovation of the Financial Markets Lab.

The ‘Courtney world-view’ is described by one of his children in this way: “We are agents of social change and we have a moral and spiritual obligation to make this place better than we found it.” With this scholarship, Jack Courtney’s influence will benefit others far beyond the limbs of the Courtney family tree.