• 1947: The Academy grew out of the National Benedictine Educational Association and was initiated by the American-Cassinese Congregation of monks, 30 December 1947.
  • 1948: First meeting of the board of the Academy at St. Meinrad, Indiana. First sectional meetings, which were in a variety of academic disciplines.
  • 1950: The Academy began publication of the American Benedictine Review.
  • 1972: The governing structure of the Academy was simplified. The sectional structure of the Academy was replaced by a single grouping.
  • 1975: The American Benedictine Review was separately incorporated.
  • 1978: The focus of meetings shifted from academic fields to “Benedictine Heritage and Culture.”
  • 1982: Membership was declared open to anyone who had a serious interest in Benedictinism.
  • 1984: The Academy’s archive was established at the St. Benedict’s Monastery, St. Joseph, Minnesota, which became the legal address of the Academy as a not-for-profit corporation.
  • 1995: The ABA website was launched on 2 December 1995.
  • 1998: The Academy observed its fiftieth anniversary at its biennial convention at St. Vincent’s Archabbey, 9-12 August 1998.
  • 2000: First pre-convention web workshop at St. Meinrad’s Archabbey.
  • 2004: First CD publication of ABA convention 2002 Proceedings: “Mentors and Mentoring: Refounding the Tradition.”
  • 2012: The Academy elects its first president not a member of a “traditional” Benedictine monastery, Martin Shannon of the ecumenical Community of Jesus.
  • 2020: The Academy elects its first non-monastic president, Rev. Greg Peters, Anglican priest and professor at Biola University and Nashotah House Theological Seminary.

The Academy is governed by a board of directors under the guidance of a Constitution and By-laws.

The Board of Directors of the Academy, elected by the membership, continues to search for ways to fulfill the purpose of the Academy and eagerly listens for input from the members and sponsors.

Presidents are elected from the membership every two years at the annual convention. Presidents since 2000 have been:

1998-2000 – Eugene Hensell, OSB

2000-2002 – Valerian Odermann, OSB 

2002-2004 – Rosemary Rader, OSB

2004-2006 – Richard Oliver, OSB

2006-2008 – Theresa Schumacher, OSB

2008-2010 – Jacquelyn Ernster, OSB

2010-2012 – Laura Swan, OSB

2012-2014 – Martin Shannon, Community of Jesus

2014-2016 – Susan Quaintance, OSB

2016-2018 – Julie Upton, RSM (Oblate OSB)

2018-2020 – Antoinette Purcell, OSB

2020-2022 – Rev. Greg Peters, OblSB