Cornelius Begley
Cornelius Begley
Christian Brothers Academy, Lincroft, announced the appointment of Cornelius “Neil” Begley as the school’s principal.

Begley, who is a 1996 CBA graduate and former science and mathematics teacher (2003 to 2009), returns to the all-boys school after spending 13 years as vice principal and then principal of St. Leo the Great School, Lincroft.

“It is an honor to come back to a place which helped form me into the man I am today,” Begley said. “Having spent many years at CBA, both as a student and an educator, I am excited about my new role as principal. I look forward to working with the students, faculty, staff and parents as we continue the rich traditions of CBA.”

Begley has led St. Leo the Great School to new heights since being appointed principal in 2012. Under his leadership, the school won the National Blue Ribbon School of Excellence twice in 2012 and 2018, the National Green Ribbon School for sustainable education, and the National School of Character award for school culture and values. St. Leo’s has maintained full enrollment, with a waiting list, during his entire tenure as principal.

“I want to personally congratulate Mr. Begley and welcome him home,” said Ross Fales, current principal. “I am looking forward to working with him on CBA’s mission to holistically develop young men of character in the Lasallian tradition. Mr. Begley is an innovative professional educator who is deeply committed to Catholic education.”

Begley will succeed Fales as CBA principal. Fales will become the school’s president effective July 1. CBA has followed the president-principal leadership model for more than 30 years, with Begley taking the “chief operating officer” role. He will be responsible for leading the all-boys, college preparatory school’s day-to-day academic operations and essential student functions.

Begley has been a champion of educating the whole person since his time as an undergraduate at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in economics. He went on to serve as a field Artillery Officer in the Army, stationed at locations such as Fort Bragg in North Carolina and Schofield Barracks in Hawaii.

After his military career ended, he returned to CBA, teaching standard and honors physics, Algebra II and honors geometry. He was integral in promoting student life at CBA as well, serving as Student Council moderator for several years.

During his time as a CBA teacher, he took part in the Brothers of the Christian Schools’ Lasallian Leadership Institute. Begley earned a master’s degree in educational leadership at Seton Hall University, South Orange, and is currently finishing his doctoral degree in K-12 Educational Administration at Seton Hall.

Begley lives in Monmouth County with his wife, Jayme, and their two children.