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1928 Timothy 2024

Timothy Arthur Reilley

November 18, 1928 — April 22, 2024


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Timothy A. Reilley died peacefully on Aprl 22, 2024, with his family at his side. He was born on November 18, 1928 in Birmingham, Alabama as Arthur Joseph Reilley and later changed his name in the Norbertine Order to Timothy A. Reilley which he kept for the rest of his life. He was the son of the late Arthur Joseph and Ethel (Bunker) Reilley. He is survived by his two nieces, Deanna (Mark) Vinson and Patti (Tom) Wauters, a grand niece, Ashley (Wauters) Brennan, and three grand nephews, Joshua Wauters, Cody and Tanner Vinson.  He was preceded in death by his brother, Jerome “Jerry”, and his wife, Janet M. Nelson.

Tim was raised in Green Bay Wisconsin.  He attended parochial grade school in Green Bay and graduated from Green Bay West High School in 1947.  In high school he was a good student, good athlete, class officer each year and President of the first Student Council at West High School.  He belonged to many clubs in school.   He was a school representative for Badger Boys State and voted most likely to succeed at graduation. He was even recruited by the famous Bobbie Feller to pitch for the Cleveland Indians.   

After high school Tim went to St. Norbert College and joined the Norbertine Order in his Junior year of college.  After graduating from college he took four years of theology at St. Norbert Abbey and was ordained a Catholic Priest on September 1,1954.

The next year he was transferred to Archmere Academy in Claymont, Delaware and taught and coached there for two years before he was transferred to Bishop Neuman High School in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. After a year at Bishop Neuman High School he was transferred back to Archmere Academy as Assistant Head Master where he taught Joe Biden, the current President of the United States.  

Tim left Archmere to return to St. Norbert Abbey in De Pere, Wisconsin as Assistant Master of Professed in 1963.  In 1964 He was appointed Master of Professed at St. Norbert Abbey.   As Master of Professed he was in charge of the Abbey seminary and he restructured the training of the seminarians at the Abbey for a modern day world, taught at St. Norbert Abbey, and was a member of the first predominately lay person Board of Trustees of St. Norbert College.  In 1969 he was appointed Principal of Premontre High School in Green Bay, Wisconsin.   

Besides his B.A from St. Norbert College, he received an M.A. from Notre Dame University and a doctorate from Western Michigan University in Educational Administration. 

In 1970 he left the Norbertines to pursue other work.  In August of 1970 he became a consultant in the Management Consulting firm of Robert H. Hayes and Associates of Chicago.  As a Management Consultant, Tim was a member of the team that did the controversial Affirmative Action Plan for the University of Michigan in the early 1970’s. In January of 1974 he left consulting to take a position as Associate Director of Development at Western Michigan University.

On January 1, 1976 he became the Director of Deferred Giving for the University of Wisconsin Foundation in Madison, Wisconsin.   In 1982 he was appointed Senior Vice President for Development in charge of fundraising for the Foundation and remained there until he retired December 31, 2001. In 1986 he was appointed the Director of the Campaign for Wisconsin, the first all campus campaign that raised $473 million dollars for the University of Wisconsin - Madison.  The Board of Directors of the Foundation named Tim a consultant to the Foundation for three years at his retirement.  When Tim retired he started a Consulting firm, Timothy A. Reilley and Associates, which served various non-profit clients.

On June 30, 1990 he married Janet M. Nelson.  Janet and Tim traveled extensively both for the Foundation and on their own for many years. Janet was the love of his life and was a tremendous asset to Tim in his work with the donors and graduates of the University of Wisconsin.     

Tim was on a number of not for profit Boards such as the Delaware Guidance Council, Catholic Guidance Council of Delaware, Big Brothers /Big Sisters of Dane County, Family Service of Green Bay, Catholic Charities of the Madison Diocese, SOS Children’s Villages, Terry Family Foundation, the Center for Jewish Studies, Madison Opera, Downtown Rotary of Madison and the Madison Rotary Foundation.  He consulted with the Lions of the State of Wisconsin, Wisconsin Foundation for Independent Colleges, St. Paul’s Campus Ministry, Crivitz Youth, Inc., Madison Chamber Orchestra, the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay, Circus World Museum, St. Vincent de Paul Society, Wisconsin Music Association Foundation and other organizations. 

Tim belonged to many organizations and had many friends.  He was a leader of a Scripture Discussion Group during his days in Green Bay, a member of the Piscatorial Inside Straight Society, a group of public relations men, the Inefficiency Club, a group of professors started in 1916, Downtown Rotary Club of Madison, The Red Jacket Open, a group of golfers, and Legatus, a group of professional Catholic executives and other interesting groups. He belonged to the University of Wisconsin Foundation Bascom Hill Society, The Wisconsin Academy of Science, Arts and Letters Minerva Society and was twice a Rotary Paul Harris Fellow. 

In his retirement Tim wrote a book, “The Life of a Fundraiser” describing his work with many clients.   

He was an athlete lettering in tennis, golf, football, basketball, and track.. He was a patron of the arts and enjoyed films, music, opera, plays and museums.   

Each of us contributes to the lives of others in his life. Tim was a Spiritual Director, Counselor, Guidance Director, helper, friend and served as a confidant to many people during his lifetime. Tim’s life was spent trying to make the world a better place in which to live. 

We would like to extend a special thank you to all those at All Saints Assisted Living who showed so much care and compassion to Tim during the last year.  In lieu of flowers gifts can be made to the St. Vincent de Paul Society, The American Family Children’s Hospital of Madison or a charity of your choice.    

Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday May 4, 2024 at St. Thomas Aquinas Catholic Church, 602 Everglade Dr. Madison, beginning with visitation at 10:00 am, followed by Mass.  Tim will be laid to rest at Resurrection Catholic Cemetery with a luncheon to follow back at church.

To send flowers to the family in memory of Timothy Arthur Reilley, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

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Saturday, May 4, 2024

10:00 - 11:00 am (Central time)

St. Thomas Aquinas Catholic Church

602 Everglade Dr, Madison, WI 53717

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Saturday, May 4, 2024

Starts at 11:00 am (Central time)

St. Thomas Aquinas Catholic Church

602 Everglade Dr, Madison, WI 53717

Get Directions

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.


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