Biography: Paul Tanner

A native of Peoria, Illinois, Paul Tanner was educated at Marquette University and at St. Francis Seminary in Mulwaukee. Ordained in 1931, Tanner's active support of the Catholic Youth Organization led to his appointment as the assistant director of the Catholic Youth Bureau of the NCWC in Washington, DC. In 1945, he was promoted to the position of assistant general secretary of the NCWC, and in 1958 he succeeded Msgr. Howard J. Carroll as the fourth General Secretary of the NCWC. Tanner received episcopal consecration in 1965, and was appointed bishop of St. Augustine, Florida. Throughout his career at the NCWC and in Florida, he was active the defending the Catholic moral teachings on the value of human life, opposing birth control and capital punishment, and championing the rights of immigrants and the poor. He also worked to implement the reforms of the Vatican II Council in his diocese. Tanner resigned from active episcopal duties in 1979, though he remained Bishop Emeritus of St. Augustine until his death.