our roots


The Archivists for Congregations of Women Religious (ACWR) came into being September 1, 1990. This was a result of discussions held at the Society of American Archivists meeting in 1989 which identified the need for a professional organization for archivists of congregations of Catholic sisters. From its inception, ACWR has had ties with the Society of American Archivists (SAA), the Leadership Conference of Women Religious (LCWR), and the History of Women Religious (HWR).

A task force, under the direction of S. Rosalie McQuaide, CSJP, oversaw the creation of a structure for the new organization and the election of its first officers who assumed their responsibilities in fall, 1992. A national office has existed since 1993, first in Pittsburgh under the direction of S. Patricia Hodge, RSM, and later at Trinity College in Washington, D.C.

Beginning in 1994, the ACWR has sponsored triennial conferences. The first was held at St. Mary’s Center in Monroe, Michigan, followed by one at the motherhouse of the Dominican Sisters in Sinsinawa, Wisconsin. The 2000 conference was held in the Cleveland, Ohio area, in 2003 in the St. Louis area, and in 2006 in the Cincinnati, Ohio area. Each one has provided an enriching opportunity for members and friends of ACWR to learn, share, and grow in their professional competence and in their ability to approach their work as a sacred ministry.

Past Presidents of ACWR
2015-16 Sarah Cantor
2014-15   Denise Gallo
2013-14   S. Louise Grundish, SC
2012-13   S. Mary Ann Gschwind, FSPA
2011-12   S. Rose Marie Martin, OP
2010-11   Ellen Pierce
2009-10   S. Francis Assisi Kennedy, OSF
2008-09   S. Louise Grundish, SC
2007-08   S. Mary Ann Gschwind, FSPA
2006-07   S. Mary Denis Maher, CSA
2005-06   S. Judith Metz, SC
2004-05   S. Mary Jeremy Buckman, RSM
2003-04   S. Katherine Misbauer, SL
2002-03   S. Susan Nowalis, RSM
2001-02   S. Edna McKeever, CSJ
2000-01   S. Kathryn Callahan, CSC
1999-00   S. Sabina Collins, OSF
1998-99   S. Dolores Liptak, RSM
1997-98   S. Rita King, SC
1996-97   S. Marjorie Buttner, OP
1995-96   S. Emma Cecilia Busam, OSU
1994-95   S. Mary Serbacki, OSF
1992-94   S. Dolores Liptak, RSM