Diocesan Review Board Update, Names and Background
Before his installation this past April as the sixth Bishop of Memphis, Bishop David P. Talley stated he was
“horrified and scandalized” by reports of the sexual misconduct of minors by clergy.
Bishop Talley made a commitment to the people across the Diocese of Memphis to do everything in his power to safeguard children and youth, to help those who were victims of misconduct and to be transparent, bringing to light any wrong doings of the past so healing can take place.
Similar to what he had done as the Bishop of Alexandria in Louisiana, Bishop Talley immediately asked the Memphis Diocesan Review Board to examine, prepare and disclose a list of clergy, credibly accused of sexual misconduct of minors. Also, to insure the most thorough process, the Bishop authorized the employment of a professional investigation company, Inquisitor, to assist the Review Board in investigating claims.
The Review Board has met numerous times since Bishop Talley’s installation to review any evidence in the Diocese of Memphis clergy personnel files that might indicate sexual abuse of a minor. In all, there have been three searches of the clergy personnel files with the most recent completed in December of 2019. In January of this year, Bishop Talley asked the investigators to examine all of the files again to make sure that nothing had been overlooked. The investigators have now recently completed looking at every clergy personnel file.
These thorough reviews have not only involved developing a list of clergy with claims in the Diocese of Memphis, it also involved compiling names of credibly accused clergy from other Dioceses or religious orders that may have at one time served our Diocese. The process required reviewing archives to determine whether there were any other allegations that could be discerned from historical documents.
Bishop Talley has emphasized how much he values the work of the Review Board and investigators, the seriousness with which they take all allegations and their dedication to ensuring the safety of children. He said, “the evil can only be purged through a vigilant process that is transparent to the public. The reviews must demonstrate the highest levels of honesty and scrutiny.”
The Review Board is a talented group of judges, former prosecutors, medical professionals and experts who are committed to thoroughly and impartially completing reviews with the assistance of investigators. The Board consists of nine voting members, including one priest and one deacon, and they function as an advisory body to Bishop Talley. Board members were selected because of their professional or work experience that enables them to provide insight and perspective.
The purpose of the Review Board is two-fold: First, to evaluate allegations of sexual misconduct by clerics involving minors and, secondly, to advise the Bishop as to appropriate steps and policies for the protection of children.
The following names and background are of the nine Review Board Members:
Memphis Diocesan Review Board Members:
Patrick Lawler is a charter member of the Review Board since its inception in 2002 and has been the Chair of the Board for the past 15 years. He is the Chief Executive Officer of Youth Villages, one of the largest private providers of services to troubled children and their families in the country. Youth Villages provides services to more than 30,000 youth in 90 locations across 20 states with 3,000 employees. Patrick’s career has been spent working with society’s most vulnerable children. He began as a counselor at Tall Trees Guidance School when he was 18 years old and then worked at the Juvenile Court of Memphis and Shelby County for five years before becoming CEO of Youth Villages. Patrick has a bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice (1977) and a master’s in Counseling (1981) from the University of Memphis. He enjoys swimming, reading, biking and spending time with his wife, Ellen, daughter, son and grandsons.
Dr. Tina Burns has been a member of the Review Board since 2018. She has been a Family Practitioner in the Memphis area for 31 years. Dr. Burns is an active parishioner at the Catholic Church of the Incarnation in Collierville, Tenn., where she serves as a Sacristan and Eucharistic Minister. A single mother of two daughters, ages 28 and 30, she is also a member of the Order of Malta, Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulcher of Jerusalem and the Catholic Medical Association. Her hobbies include gardening, needlework, music and reading.
John Campbell has been on the Review Board since 2019. He holds a bachelor’s degree in History (1980) and a Juris Doctorate (1983) from the University of Memphis. John is a husband and father. He began his legal career as an Assistant Public Defender and later served as an Assistant District Attorney General where he was the lead prosecutor in cases involving the abuse of children. In addition, John has taught around the country on trial advocacy and ethics.
Deacon Jeff Drzycimski has been on the Review Board since 2018. He is a permanent Deacon for the Diocese of Memphis, ordained in 2008 and assigned to St. Louis Catholic Church. Married for 32 years, Deacon Jeff and his wife, Bess, have nine children and one grandchild. He works as Assistant Principal for Faith and Mission at St. Benedict at Auburndale Catholic High School where he also teaches Theology. For ten years, Deacon Jeff has been the host of the nationally syndicated radio talk show The Catholic Café heard weekly on EWTN Radio, Relevant Radio and Guadalupe Radio network stations, as well as on iTunes and on the web at thecatholiccafe.com.
Father Robert Marshall, Jr. has been on the Review Board since 2018 and serves as the Vicar General of the Diocese of Memphis and Pastor of the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception. A native Memphian, Father Marshall is a graduate of Christian Brothers University with a bachelor’s degree in History (1980), the University of Memphis with a Juris Doctorate (1983) and Notre Dame Seminary Graduate School of Theology with a Master’s degree (2000). He was ordained to the priesthood in 2000 and has served in five parishes. Prior to entering seminary, Father Marshall practiced law for 12 years in both private practice and as corporate counsel.
Retired Judge John McCarroll, Jr. has been on the Review Board since 2015. He has practiced law with various firms in Memphis since graduating from law school in 1965. He retired in 2014 as a Circuit Court Judge. During his 20 years on the bench, Judge McCarroll heard many different types of cases, including family law cases. The most important issues in family law matters involve the protection of children in different situations. Judge McCarroll received his bachelor’s degree in 1962 and his Juris Doctor in 1965 from Vanderbilt University. He has been married for 57 years and has five children and 10 grandchildren, and he is parishioner of St. Francis of Assisi parish. Activities and honors include recipient of the Chancellor Charles A. Rond Outstanding Jurist Award, St. Thomas More Guild of Catholic Lawyers, Board of Directors and past board member/trustee Memphis University School.
Juanita Chism Richardson is a charter member of the Review Board since its inception in 2002. She has been a teacher and administrator in the Memphis City Schools and the Tunica County, Miss., schools for more than 43 years, and currently works as a Realtor with First National Realty, Inc. Juanita has been married for 51 years to Walter Richardson and is the mother of four. She graduated from University of Memphis with bachelor and master’s degrees, and attended University of Memphis Law School. Juanita is a member of St. Joseph Catholic Church and serves on the Pastoral Council. She is also a 4th Degree member of the Knights of St. Peter Claver, Ladies Auxiliary.
Joan Thomas has been on the Review Board since 2018. She grew up in Memphis and completed her bachelor’s degree in Nursing at Vanderbilt University and obtained her MSN/PhD from the University of Tennessee Center for Health Sciences. Joan has worked as a psychiatric nurse practitioner and mental health nurse educator. She also served as a faculty member of the Loewenberg College of Nursing where she created and spearheaded the Executive MSN Program. An active member of St. Louis Church, she is also a member of the Order of Malta and is currently focused on the development of a Guiding Star health facility. Joan has served on the boards of the Commission on Missing and Exploited Children, Court Appointed Special Advocates, Girls Inc., Junior League of Memphis, Restore Corps, Girls Against Porn, Youth Striving for Excellence, National Alliance for the Mentally Ill, Sigma Theta Tau and Alpha in Catholic Context.
Larry Wright has been on the Review Board since 2007. He and his wife, Mary, have been married for 43 years, and have eight children and 16 grandchildren. A parishioner at St. Michael Catholic Church, Larry holds a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from the University of Memphis. He is the President of Advertising Impact, specializing in business-to-business marketing and communications.
If you are a victim of sexual abuse, please contact your local law enforcement agency. Sexual abuse is a serious crime and must be treated as such. If you would like more information or are in need of assistance, please contact our Director of Child and Youth Protection at (901) 359-2027.
If you have any questions about the information provided, please let us know.
God bless you!
Director of Communications
Catholic Diocese of Memphis