Over 650 people, including 250 alumni, present and former faculty, parents, grandparents, coaches and friends attended The Golden Gala at the Aqua Turf on March 30th. This event was as one of the highlights of Holy Cross High School's year-long 50th Anniversary Celebration. Thanks to the generosity of our extended Crusader community, over $170,000 was raised through ticket sales, sponsors, the silent and live auctions, the Crusader paddle raise (i.e. cash auction) and the Car Raffle.
Tom DiPietro '79 was the Master of Ceremonies for the evening. The enthusiastic crowd was treated to speeches, performances and presentations from the Holy Cross family including Interim President Paul G. Geise, Sabrina Santopietro '20, Sister Pat Jamele, CND, Brother Thomas Dziekan, C.S.C., Omofolade Olusanya '20, Board Chair Kevin McSherry '75 and Incoming President, Dr. Thomas C. Pellegrino. The Live Aucton was led by Richard Tanuis and Jarred Tanuis, and music was provided by the band 3G.
"Almost exactly one year ago," addressed Paul G. Geise to the crowd, "Holy Cross Waterbury received communication that The Congregation of Holy Cross, Moreau Province had presented a one million dollar gift given in support of and toward the advancement of our beloved Waterbury school's educational mission. To all the Brothers of Holy Cross – Br. Harold Hathaway, C.S.C., Br. Donald Blauvelt, C.S.C., Br. James Branigan, C.S.C., Br. George Schmitz, C.S.C., and Br. Tom Dziekan C.S.C., God bless you and thank you from the bottom of our hearts. We stand on the shoulders of giants as we honor and celebrate your goodness tonight."
"I am excited, honored, and humbled to be here speaking to you as Holy Cross's next President," said Dr. Thomas C. Pellegrino. "I want to thank you for welcoming me and my wife Carla so readily and so warmly into the Holy Cross family.We are blessed by this."
Dr. Pellegrino made an announcement of a very special gift made in recognition of Holy Cross' 50th Anniversary. Long time and loyal supporters, Jeffrey '87 and Kim Fryer, have created a matching gift challenge that will result in a combined gift of one million dollars to the Holy Cross High School Endowment fund. Jeff and Kim's commitment of $500,000 includes both seeding their gift and then matching donor gifts in multiples of $50,000 to the endowment fund to reach this one million dollar goal.
"This is a family that knows, reflects, and has worked tirelessly for our school," said Dr. Pellegrino. "They believe in the power of the educational experience, the mission that underlies it, and perhaps most importantly, they know how critically important it is to make a Holy Cross education accessible and sustainable to both current and future students."
"It was an amazing celebration of Holy Cross's 50 years," said Cary Fappiano '85, Vice President for Advancement. "Seeing so many familiar faces brought back many memories of my time at Holy Cross. I'm sure that others felt the same way. This 50th Anniversary Celebration brought us back to our glory days and at the same time, showed a glimpse of the Holy Cross of today and tomorrow."
Holy Cross wishes to send a special thanks to the members of the Golden Gala Committee. Their diligence and commitment were instrumental to the evening's success. Committee members include: Gayle Hill, Co-Chair, Tom DiPietro '79, Co-Chair, Tina Agati, Janet Antilla, Janine Bowler, Jerry Ciarleglio '72, Nancy Comeau '82, Kim Demers, MaryAnn Dzinski '84, Cary Fappiano '85, Kelly Garden, Gloria Ilievski, Liz Lynch, Nora Mason, Elaine Melchionne, Kay Moser, Deb Novella, Jo Oczkowski, Brian Peschel, Maryann Peschel '82, Mike Phelan '89, Angela Quicquaro, Bernice Rizk, Tamra Russo and MaryBeth Stevens. In addition, we appreciate the work of Dr. Robert Porzio '72, John Zinno '85 and Todd Genovese '88 in conducting a successful paddle raise for the Annual Fund.
Extra special thanks goes to our Gala sponsors:
- Golden Sponsors: Blasius Chevrolet & Cadillac, Inc., BTS Graphics & Printing, LLC, Capito Coffee, Fascia's Chocolates, Kim & Jeff Fryer '87 and Power Station Events
- Green & Gold Sponsors: Blumshapiro, Bushka Lumber & Millwork and Zackin, Zimyeski, Sullivan CPAs
- Moreau Sponsors: AIEP International Education Partners, Brothers of Holy Cross, Barbara Diorio '83, Dowling Ford, The Elser Family, Ion Bank, Kristen Bulkovitch Jacoby '85, Rathskeller Restaurant and Bar, Mark Sparano '82, Stately Stairs and Titos Handmade Vodka