Mike Alvarez, a Catholic school educator with more than 30 years of experience, has been appointed new principal of St. Bernard High School in Playa del Rey.

Alvarez has previously served at Southern California high schools Don Bosco Tech, St. John Bosco and St. Genevieve, as well as at Archbishop Riordan High in San Francisco. In addition, he has chaired numerous visiting committees for the Western Association of Schools and Colleges.

Alvarez is committed to carrying on the gospel ministry of Catholic education and has done extensive research on Catholic schools in today’s society, St. Bernard officials said.

He received his undergraduate degree from Don Bosco College (1972), studied at the Jesuit School of Theology in Berkeley (1979), earned his master’s in education from UCLA (1995) and is currently pursuing his doctorate in education from UCLA.

The appointment of Alvarez as principal is the first step in creating a new spirit of energy for the school to identify and invite new sources of support for St. Bernard, school officials said. In collaboration with an experienced and dedicated faculty, staff, and administration, Alvarez will provide the leadership to continue the strong academic education grounded in Catholic faith and morality to the school’s young men and women, officials said.

“Rarely have I met such a wonderful group of people — all dedicated to the mission of St. Bernard High School — faculty, staff, parents, alumni, local pastors, and so many others,” Alvarez said.

“I can’t wait for the school year to start so that I can continue the efforts of my predecessors to build St. Bernard’s into a true community of learning, leadership and love.”

Alvarez and his wife Judy, have two children; daughter Teresa, 19, and son Bobby, 17.