Ambassador Francis Rooney '71 was the keynote speaker at the Georgetown Prep Business Network (GPBN) breakfast on June 6 in Washington, D.C. The GPBN breakfast was hosted by Ambassador Rooney's classmate, Sean Boland '71, at Baker Botts.
Ambassador Rooney is a member of the United States House of Representatives, serving Florida's 19th congressional district. He was first elected to the House in 2016 and won his reelection bid in November to remain the district's representative.
Originally from Muskogee, Oklahoma, Francis boarded at Prep from the fall of 1967 through 1971. His brothers, Timothy '76 and James '82, are also proud Prep alumni. After his graduation from Prep, Ambassador Rooney matriculated to Georgetown University (1975) and later to the Georgetown University Law Center where he earned his Juris Doctor in 1978.
He is the former majority owner of the Manhattan Construction Company and he has served as CEO of Rooney Holdings, an investment and holdings company based in Naples, Florida. Among many distinctions, Manhattan Construction is renowned for constructing the Dallas Cowboys home stadium and is the only firm to build two presidential libraries.
In 2005, President George W. Bush nominated Ambassador Rooney to serve as Ambassador to the Holy See. For three years, he and his wife, Kathleen, lived in Rome while he served as Ambassador. Upon his return to the United States, Ambassador Rooney authored The Global Vatican: An Inside Look at the Catholic Church, World Politics, and the Extraordinary Relationship between the United States and the Holy See (2013). In the book, he provides a first-hand account of the Catholic Church's role in world diplomacy and the United States' relationship with the Holy See, including his prospective on future challenges and opportunities.