Patrick H. McNamara was a priest of the California Province of the Society of Jesus, ordained in 1962. He was on the faculty of Loyola University in Los Angeles from 1964 to 1969, after which he resigned from the priesthood. He was then an associate professor of sociology at the University of New Mexico until his retirement in 1998. He died in 2001. He received his PhD at UCLA, where he was a research associate with the Ford Foundation-sponsored Mexican American Study Project.