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Celebrating 60 Years! ANNUAL REPORT OF GIVING 2016-2017


Dear Bishop O’Connell Community,

Our mission is to provide students an education rooted in the life of Christ and to foster the pursuit of excellence in the whole person.


Find us at oconnellhs on social media!

Since last spring’s Knights’ Pages was published, much has happened of interest to our school community. As we continue this year’s celebration of the school’s 60th anniversary, important steps toward securing Bishop O’Connell’s future are being taken. Planning that began in the spring of 2013 with the creation of a master site plan for O’Connell reached a more tactical level in the 2016-2017 academic year. With the support of the Board and the Diocese, the school has launched into the leadership phase of a capital campaign to begin funding the first two phases of that plan. The work to be accomplished as a result of this campaign is exciting and transformative. Improvements include a beautiful new chapel, modern learning spaces and an inviting new entrance. The goal is to complete these first two phases before the opening of school in August 2020. The overall plan is a thoughtfully considered scheme for systematically recapitalizing the school’s physical plant over the next two decades. Thanks to the early commitments of leadership donors, $1.2 million in cash and pledges has been raised toward a goal of $4 million. A key first step in the implementation of the work is providing our I.H.M. Sisters with a modern convent. I am excited to report that Bishop Burbidge recently acquired a brand new home in O’Connell’s neighborhood that will become the I.H.M. convent before the end of this year. When the Sisters are settled, the existing 19,000 square foot convent will be prepared for a summer 2018 demolition. The convent will be replaced with a new three-story building that will include a beautiful chapel that emerges from the building toward Trinidad Street as a clear symbol of O’Connell’s Catholic identity. This new chapel, twice the size of the current chapel (that was created out of two adjacent classrooms in the 1980s) will enrich our campus ministry programs in incalculable ways in the coming years. Bishop Burbidge’s interest in our efforts, and his support as honorary co-chair of the igKnight the Vision capital campaign, have been important components of the strong start to these efforts. Our Bishop has shown great interest in Catholic education throughout the Diocese since he came to us from Raleigh last year. He has visited Bishop O’Connell six times, including attendance at several O’Connell basketball games. Our plans are ambitious, but necessary. O’Connell’s facilities have served the school well for 60 years but are in need of improvement. We owe nothing less to current and future generations of O’Connell students. Thank you for your prayerful consideration about how you can help. As Board chair, I am pleased to share these exciting updates with you. There is tremendous energy in the school right now as the physical changes I have described are matched by a clear and shared focus on a superior Catholic college-preparatory education that extends the great traditions of Bishop O’Connell High School. Sincerely,

On the cover: Senior members of the student council reenact an iconic photo from the first O’Connell yearbook.

John J. Brough II ’82 Chairman, Board of Governors 2

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Dear Bishop O’Connell Family, Our Board Chair John Brough has shared with you the exciting news about the plans for the physical recapitalization of the school. The process that led up to the launch of the igKnight the Vision campaign was rooted in our mission as a diocesan Catholic college preparatory school and the plans that have emerged reflect that. As Head of School, I am indebted to John and the entire Board, to my colleagues at the school, to our Superintendent, Dr. Jennifer Bigelow, and to Bishop Burbidge for the support and counsel the school has been blessed by in this process. We have miles to go before we sleep, but we have a strong plan and a great team. It is my privilege to share a little about the work going on inside the school to ensure that today’s Knights are receiving an excellent education that is rooted in our Catholic mission and directed toward ensuring that the learning experience for students is not only rigorous and relevant, but student-centered. The day-to-day responsibility for guiding this process falls to Carl Patton, our Assistant Head of School and the Director of Curriculum and Instruction. Supported by our Dean of Mission, Meghan Lonergan, our Dean of Academic Administration, Sister Catherine Hill, and our Dean of Student Services, Erin O’Malley, Carl is leading several integrated processes in the school that have challenged us to build a stronger skills-based curriculum for our 21st century learners while we assess ways to embed more deliberately our Catholic mission across the curriculum. These parallel efforts, undertaken by grade-level teams among our faculty, have yielded amazing results that reflect a greater focus on both Catholic identity AND skill development. We are blessed to be able to support three faculty members as instructional coaches who are lending their expertise to assist faculty with lesson planning and the execution of specific pedagogies in the classroom. Our very talented faculty are observing one another in the classroom, sharing best practices, and working in teams to develop approaches for student-centered learning. It is challenging and exciting work, but the results are very encouraging. Last month, Father Thompson and our Athletic Director Joe Wootten collaborated once again to execute sports team retreats (this time for the upcoming winter season). These shorter in-school retreats draw the attention of our students to sports as ministry and cause them to think individually and collectively about their growth as men and women of faith by drawing upon their interest in athletics. They have proven to be valuable augmentations of our overall campus ministry program. Another valuable element of the O’Connell experience is our expanded services for student with intellectual and cognitive disabilities. We are in our third year of offering this opportunity and have two full-time and one part-time special education teacher (as well as a program director) dedicated to this effort that is supporting nine students currently. An amazing component of this program is the over 60 peer mentors who assist the students receiving expanded services. In many cases, student peer mentors have given up one of their electives in order to be able to assist another O’Connell Knight during a specific class period. Teachers around the building are developing differentiated lessons for our expanded services students and the peer mentors are helping these students progress in those lessons. Our expanded services have been a remarkable blessing to the school community, something that has deepened our appreciation for and commitment to valuing the unique gifts and human dignity of every learner. Big things continue to happen every day on Little Falls Road and we are indebted to all of you for the blessing of your prayerful support. We could not accomplish the mission without you. Sincerely in Christ,

Dr. Joseph E Vorbach III ’83 Head of School

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God Bless Bishop O’Connell High School held its 57th commencement exercise at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington, D.C. on Thursday, June 1. The Most Reverend Michael F. Burbidge, Bishop of the Diocese of Arlington, presented diplomas to the 231 members of the class of 2017. BISHOP BURBIDGE addressed the

graduates, reminiscing fondly on his first visit to Bishop O’Connell just a day after he was named the seventh Bishop of Arlington. He reminded the class of 2017 that Jesus tells us to be childlike. “As you embark on this new stage in life, walk humbly with your God, trusting in him as a child trusts his or her parent,” he said. “Walk as God’s family, as brothers and sisters in Christ,” he added. “Make new friends who will lift you up.” He encouraged the graduates to allow God to show them the way: “You will not get lost,” he told them. LUKE BRINKMANN, the class

salutatorian, compared the past four years to a roller coaster, “an amazing ride and one that is over wicked fast.” He reflected on the collective accomplishments of the class of 2017 during their four year tenure at Bishop O’Connell—in the classroom, in the arts and athletics, and in service to others. “What we have done here is just the beginning,” he said. “We must continue to persevere, to excel and to give wholly.”  BROOKE TRAN, the class valedictorian, challenged conventional graduation speeches that focus on achieving goals and successes through hard work and determination. “Where is the end game here?” she asks. “These external things bring us only fleeting satisfaction.” Instead, Brooke urged the class of 2017 to search for the meaning that is inherent in all things that they are passionate about. “They all lead to things we actually long for: happiness, truth, beauty and goodness,” she said. “They point to the origin from which we come: God.”


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the Class of 2017! 2017 Legacy Graduates The following members of the class of 2017 are sons and daughters of Bishop O’Connell alumni: CARY PATRICK BEAM


Mary Eileen Dolan Beam ’84

Bryan M. Ley ’83



Marie Most Bourque ’78

Caroline Katz McGinn ’85



Kenneth J. Burch ’82

Jennifer Kay Herceg Mendell ’92




Isabel Maria De Almeida Couto ’92

Stephen J. Pearring ’81

Maritoni A. Espejo ’91




Mary Dufault DiGiulian ’79

Son of William Rickard ’82

Paula K. Wypych ’79




Priscilla Chong Giannelli ’91

Nicoletta Romano Saffelle ’88

Christine Hathaway Spann ’90




Melody Ballesteros ’94

Kristina Kadeli Saunders ’82

Mary Ryal Stechschulte ’74




Barrie White Jones ’80

Betsy Gallagher Schauf ’83

C. Elizabeth Matthews Stevens ’78

The Class of 2017 in Numbers $21.3 million in college scholarships 15,065 hours of service 71 AP Scholars 30 graduated with college credit from

Marymount University

21 are playing sports at the college level 16 earned a Global Studies Certificate with

their diploma


first-place speech/essay winners in local/regional/national events

1 Valedictorian, Brooke Tran, enrolled at Stanford University

1 Salutatorian, Luke Brinkmann, enrolled at Villanova University

1 Praetor (graduating with the third

highest honors, and introducing the commencement speaker), Caroline Jones, enrolled at William & Mary

Read more about the class of 2017 at

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BISHOP CELEBRATES MASS OF THE HOLY SPIRIT It was a great day to be a Knight, as the Most Reverend Michael F. Burbidge, Bishop of the Diocese of Arlington, spent a Monday in September at O’Connell. In addition to the celebration of the Mass of the Holy Spirit, the Bishop’s day included multiple informal classroom visits, as well as opportunities to engage students in discussions throughout the building. He also took time to meet with the O’Connell freshman faculty team to learn more about their crosscurricular initiatives grounded in the school’s Catholic identity.

Dec. 14, 1958 – The Most Rev. John J. Russell, Bishop of Richmond, asks for God’s blessing on Bishop O’Connell High School at the official dedication ceremony.


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SOUP DRIVE COMES A LONG WAY Starting in the 1974-1975 school year, students at Bishop O’Connell have taken time each fall to collect cans of hearty soup to help stock the shelves of diocesan food pantries. In the first soup drive, students collected 1,153 cans of “Chunky Soup,” which in its day was the only brand of soup on the market that didn’t require any diluting. In the fall of 2017, students collected 14,595 cans of ready-toeat hearty soup. Since the very beginning, the annual soup drive culminates with a Living Rosary, where the school prays for those who benefit from their donations.

CATHOLIC IDENTITY IS NOT BY ACCIDENT Carl Patton is the assistant head of school and the director of curriculum and instruction at Bishop O’Connell. Over the course of the last year, he has been engaging teams of faculty and administrators in a comprehensive curriculum audit. “This is a best practice that enables us to take a look at what is being done across disciplines, how and for what purpose,” said Patton. “It opens up great conversations among the Catholic education professionals in the building about how learning is happening and it’s steps and sequences.” “There is no doubt that the educational landscape is always changing and these audits allow us to be deliberate in how we move forward,” added Dr. Joseph Vorbach, Head of School. “Our school is committed to providing a rigorous, relevant and student-centered curriculum with intentional focus on how our students experience the Catholic mission of the school.” Initial efforts earlier this year provided an articulation of a sequence of guiding principles for each grade level: 9th Grade Dignity of the Human Person

“These themes ensure that we weave our Catholic identity into our curriculum in a systematic way,” added Patton. “They build on each other and eventually prepare our students for life beyond O’Connell.” Over the course of the school year, teachers, instructional coaches, and administrators are taking part in collaborative working sessions by Members of the igKnight professional development team, department, looking at including Siobhan Dannaher, research coach and librarian; Sam ways to enrich, improve, Vulcano, social studies teacher and literacy coach; and John and—in some cases—revise Meehan, instructional coach, work with Susanna Dawyot, a new English teacher. the school’s existing curriculum to fully integrate these guiding principles into Working with the support of the each of the courses and units of study instructional coaches and literacy offered in all departments throughout specialist in school’s “igKnight” the school. professional development program, In the spring of the previous school year, four teams of freshman teachers from different subject areas—English, history, science and religion—were the first cohort to begin to dig into the audit. They viewed the freshman curriculum using three basic questions:

10th Grade The grace of being a Catholic community

1. Why is this particular unit included in our curriculum?

11th Grade Using your faith as a guide

2. What are the specific skills that will be the focus of instruction for this unit?

12th Grade Living your faith in the broader world

3. How can authentic student mastery of these skills be assessed (beyond rote memorization)?

The Legacy of the Christian Brothers Bishop O’Connell opened as a co-institutional high school, with boys on one side and girls on the other. Classes were held separately, but the library, cafeteria and gym were used jointly. Until 1971, the boys’ division was staffed by Brothers of the Christian Schools, who were dedicated to preparing the individual—mind, soul and body—to live a full life.

the group discussed cross-curricular and interdepartmental idea-sharing and support initiatives. They also brainstormed the ways that the gradelevel themes can be woven into each of the subject areas during the course of the year. In the end, each of the four teams delivered a full-year pacing guide for a newly enriched freshman curriculum— driven by 21st century research skills, student-centered classroom activities, and common essential questions that challenge students to speak directly to how each unit of study connects to the school’s broader Catholic identity. On any given school day, students may be unaware of the efforts that go on behind the scenes to ensure their success across all curriculum areas. Having leveraged best practices to get to this point, Patton is looking forward to sharing the experience and the outcomes with other Catholic educators at next annual NCEA Conference— scheduled to take place in Cincinnati next April—when he and English teacher and instructional coach John Meehan will be presenting a spotlight session on “The Catholic School Advantage: Implementing Faith-Based Curriculum in Every Classroom at Every Level.”

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NATIONAL MERIT COMMENDATIONS College Board named nine Bishop O’Connell seniors as Commended Students in the 2018 National Merit Scholarship Program: Tyler Dittmer

Gabriela Matheu

Selene Swanson

Matthew Ehlers

Harrison McBride

Seth Viani

Julia Jones

Caitlin Mea

Annemarie Wolf

About 34,000 Commended Students throughout the nation have been recognized for their exceptional academic promise. Commended Students placed among the top 50,000 scorers of more than 1.6 million students who entered the 2018 competition by taking the 2016 Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT).

MODEL GENERAL ASSEMBLY Last spring, five Bishop O’Connell students joined with more than 200 of their peers from across the Commonwealth to participate in the 2017 Virginia Model General Assembly (MGA) in Richmond. The annual two-day conference takes place in the actual chambers in the state capital, with these high school students forming a model general assembly and taking on the roles of elected officials, lobbyists and media. This first-year team from O’Connell spent most of last year meeting with their advisor, Greg Haas, to research and debate issues. They also attended a bill-writing workshop to help them prepare the bill that they eventually shepherded through committees before being passed by both houses and signed into MGA law. The O’Connell team included a senator - Nora Stechshulte ’17, a delegate – Katie Bourque ’17, a lobbyist – Martha Stevens ’17, and two members of the media – Rosie Coolidge ’18 and Thomas Dannenfelser ’19. Dannenfelser was selected to participate in the YMCA Youth Conference on National Affairs, which is a gathering of delegates from each state.

SUMMER STUDY IN SPAIN Last summer, six O’Connell students traveled with Spanish teacher, Faryde Yanine, to the University of Salamanca in Spain for a two-week study abroad program. The study abroad program immersed the students with rigorous academics in the mornings and excursions in the afternoons. With guided tours by the university’s own professors, they visited the important sites, including churches, palaces, museums, libraries and convents in Salamanca, Madrid, Toledo, and Segovia. While in Madrid students toured the famous El Prado Museum to see masterpieces from Velazquez, Goya and el Greco. At the Reina Sofia museum, they saw the famous painting of Picasso “El Guernica.” Other highlights included walks to the Plaza Mayor to enjoy the local food and the monuments in the streets, and a flamenco show in Salamanca. “I am so proud of these students,” said Yanine. “They took full advantage of every experience during this very special program. Their hard work and their enthusiasm payed off earned them two college credits and a once-ina-lifetime memories.” Congratulations to Gabriella Grimaldi ’19, Karen Hidalgo ’17, Ryley Howard ’18, Zacharias Muleta ’18, Marinna Rodarte ’19, and Benjamin Swoopes ’18.


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Blessed by the Presence of I.H.M. Sisters Since 1957, O’Connell has been blessed with the guidance and presence of a community of Sisters, Servants of the Immaculate Heart of Mary (I.H.M.) who live and work at the school. Students and other teachers are enriched by their example of service, dedication, persistence and integrity.

ECONOMICS TEACHER IN GERMANY O’Connell economics teacher, Bill Betthauser, was selected as a fellow in the Transatlantic Outreach Program (TOP) Study Tour operated by the Goethe Institut. This summer he traveled in Germany with a group of U.S. K-12 social studies teachers as a part of this program. “The focus of the trip was on contemporary Germany,” said Betthauser. “We were looking at everything from education and politics to economics, immigration and entrepreneurship. My goal was to bring back to my classroom a better knowledge about Germany when it was divided into two economic systems (East vs. West Germany) and the challenges that still exist today.”

PRESENTING AT AP CONFERENCE English Department Chair and teacher of AP Literature, Mrs. Diane Cerniglia, was a presenter at the 2017 AP Conference held July 26-30 at the Washington Convention Center. Drawing on her 39 years of classroom experience, she shared various techniques and insights at her session entitled “Six Tried and True Methods for Teaching the Novel,” which was attended by over 100 of her peers.

ELEVATED BY HIS LOVE— STEUBENVILLE YOUTH CONFERENCE In the middle of their summer vacations, 13 O’Connell students, including five incoming freshmen, joined up with our school chaplain, Fr. Gregory Thompson, and religion teacher, Mr. Dennis Dwyer, for a three-day youth conference at Franciscan University of Steubenville (Ohio). The annual Steubenville Youth Conferences bring over 50,000 Catholic teens together at conferences around the country to experience the joy of following Christ. “The conference theme was ‘Elevate,’ and included dynamic speakers, great praise and worship music along with powerful encounters with the Lord in the celebration of Mass, adoration of the Blessed Sacrament and opportunities to go to confession,” said O’Connell’s chaplain, Father Thompson. Pictured above is the O’Connell group at the conference, joined by their diocesan friends from St. Mark’s (Vienna) youth ministry.

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Arts News

Fall Concert Series Pops Concert - The O’Connell String Orchestra, Jazz Band, Symphonic Band and Concert Band were featured in the school’s annual fall pops concert. The audience enjoyed a variety of tunes, including American Riversongs, Two Scenes from the Hollow, Billy Joel’s Root Beer Rag, and others. One Voice – A Choral Concert to Heal, Inspire and Encourage Unity – The O’Connell Singers

ON STAGE WITH ERIC CHURCH It was quite an evening to remember for a group of O’Connell choir members who provided background vocals for country singer Eric Church’s opening number at the Verizon Center in Washington, D.C. last May. Choir Director Peter Kadeli received an email earlier in the week asking if he had a small group of students who could be available for an afternoon of rehearsals and a quick performance that evening. He reached out to the O’Connell Singers, the women’s select chorus, which he felt had the right mix of voices for this assignment.

along with the Men’s Chorus and the Women’s Chorus took the stage this fall for a special concert with an uplifting theme. Songs included Pete Seeger’s Turn! Turn! Turn!, Shine on Me, Ain’t No Mountain High Enough, and Ruth Moody’s One Voice. There was even some Justin Timberlake— Can’t Stop the Feeling—in the mix.

In all, sixteen members of the O’Connell Singers participated in the event, which included an afternoon bus ride into the city, a back-stage tour and rehearsal session, before their big moment to appear on-stage in front of a sold-out Eric Church concert. “This was truly an amazing opportunity for our students,” said Kadeli. “Very few high school students can say they have performed with a Grammy winning musician for more than 18,000 audience members. We are very grateful to Eric Church for supporting music in our schools.”

The 1960 Girls Glee Club forms a living Christmas Tree as part of the holiday music program.

TWO SENIORS NAMED TO STATE CHORUS Congratulations to O’Connell seniors Peter Lucas and Vasili Varfis who earlier this year were named to the 2017 Virginia Music Educators Association (VMEA) Honors Chorus. The VMEA audition is highly competitive and prepares dedicated music students for auditions with universities and other artistic organizations,” said O’Connell’s choral director Peter Kadeli. “This is quite an honor for Peter and Vasili and for our school’s music programs.” These O’Connell men’s chorus members are two of only 15 Bass 1 voices statewide who performed at the VMEA Honors Festival at the Omni Homestead Resort in Hot Springs, Va. later in the fall.


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Sports News For some early season team bonding, ice hockey and basketball players engaged in a fun game of tug-of-war at the winter sports retreat.


SOFTBALL’S PERFECT SEASON The 2017 Bishop O’Connell softball team finished the season with two crowns, earning both the WCAC and Virginia Independent Schools Athletic Association (VISAA) Division 1 titles. The Lady Knights wrapped up their season with a perfect 27-0 record, defeating Norfolk Christian Academy, 8-0, in the state championship game held in Sutherland, Va. on May 12. Earlier that month O’Connell defeated St. John’s (27-1) in the WCAC tournament quarter-finals and Bishop McNamara (14-0) in the semi-finals before prevailing over St. Mary’s Ryken in the WCAC championship game by a score of 9-0. “What can I say?” said Head Coach Tommy Orndorff. “27-0! The team just dominated, outscoring the opposition, 329-6… ranked Top 5 nationally in two separate polls almost the entire season… #1 in The Washington Post. Batters #1 through #9 in the lineup produced consistently, and our pitcher, Kathryn Sandercock was incredible, evidenced by her selection to the Team USA Junior National Team. She surrendered just six runs total for the season — just two earned runs, good for a 0.09 ERA (earned run average) and striking out 330 in 151 innings pitched. It was a special season – one that I will cherish the rest of my days.”

Bishop O’Connell continues to actively participate and benefit from its partnership with the national Play Like a Champion program, and has been asked to share information about the school’s sports retreat program at their leadership conferences. O’Connell’s Campus Ministry works side-by-side with the athletics office to host team retreats at the beginning of each season. These retreats bring teams together with intentional time for team bonding, reflection, sharing and more. Each retreat culminates with a special Mass, celebrated by the school chaplain, Rev. Gregory Thompson.

O’Connell’s newly formed CHAMPS club (Character, Honor And Morality in Play by Student Athletes) is another opportunity for members to develop as moral leaders of faith who are committed to excellence in athletics and service to one another. O’Connell coaches and administrators have presented information about these initiatives at Play Like a Champion leadership events, and the CHAMPS club was recently featured in the organization’s newsletter.

Student-athlete leaders play important roles in these retreats, but their activities are not just limited to the retreat day.

“Our coaches and students are enthusiastically engaged with Fr. Thompson in developing and implementing these retreats,” said Athletic Director Joe Wootten. “We see this as just one small element of carrying out the mission of the school.”

O’Connell’s CHAMPS club members.

The field hockey team finished their retreat with a special Mass in the school chapel.

Did You Know? The original school jacket emblem was not what you might expect. The Bishop O’Connell Knights logo was depicted with a sailing ship, similar to what might be associated with the Knights of Columbus. These jackets were available for purchase at the school store in the fall of 1958, after the “Knights” mascot had been chosen by a student vote during the previous year. According to an alumnus from the first graduating class, the association with the Knights of Columbus is not surprising, given that the organization was very supportive of the new school and its sports programs. For example, during the first winter, when there were no interscholastic sports, the Knights of Columbus sponsored the intramural basketball leagues for boys and girls. The game were played at neighboring schools in the area. The sailing ship image appears to be short-lived at O’Connell. When the team letter jackets came out in the spring of 1959, the emblem on the sleeve was a chess Knight. The rest is history. Go Knights!

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Why “The Visor”? “The Visor refers to that portion of a knight’s helmet which protects his eyes, but at the same time allow unimpeded vision. By presenting only verified facts, our paper will protect the reputation of both school and students. Complete coverage of activities will be included in our “all-seeing” articles in order that this name will be more than fulfilled. You can easily observe that with his visor out of use, a cavalier would become a more or less unarmed prey for any opponent. As a member of the Catholic Press we dedicate ourselves to the job of keeping your visor down and in good working condition.” —The Visor, Vol. 1 ,No. 1, Pg. 1

Exchange Program Takes Students to Spain and France By Ian Alvano ’19

Fire & Ice for a Good Cause by Marinna Rodarte ’18 Have you ever wondered what would happen if the players of field hockey and those of ice hockey met on the same playing field? Well that is exactly what happened this fall at Bishop O’Connell. For the first time ever, O’Connell’s varsity field hockey and ice hockey teams fought girls against boys in the “Fire and Ice” game, a match created to raise money for cystic fibrosis (CF) research. On the evening of Monday, Sept. 25, students, faculty and parents crowded together in the stands as they eagerly anticipated what was sure to be a memorable event. The game was action-packed as players ran down the field, trying to gain the upper hand. As the battle raged on, the boys ice hockey team clashed their way forward and surprised nearly everyone in the stands as junior Garrison O’Donnell scored the first goal of the game. But, despite the boys’ efforts, the girls outplayed their opponents in the end. The final score was 4-2 in favor of the girls. Of course, it can be argued that the field hockey team held an unfair advantage. Yet this has only made the boys just as determined as ever to come back strong in what they hope will be round two next year… Read the rest of this story at


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In early October, Bishop O’Connell High School students took on the world. Two groups of O’Connell students traveled to Europe as part of a nine-day exchange program. One group went to Reims, France and the other to Barcelona, Spain. The students departed together from Dulles Airport on a direct flight to France. From there, the French students traveled by bus to Reims, while the students who went to Spain took a connecting flight to Barcelona. Students stayed with host families and immersed themselves in the rich European culture. In Reims and Barcelona students went sightseeing, attended school, and practiced their Spanish or French. Last year the exchange program was in reverse, with the O’Connell students hosting students from Reims and Barcelona in their homes… Read the rest of this story at

Since 1959, Bishop O’Connell students have been reporting the news in the school newspaper, The Visor. Today you can also read their stories online at







Mrs. Arcari is an attorney who has served both in private practice and as a prosecutor in the U.S. Attorney’s Office. She holds a B.A. from Mary Washington College in historic preservation and a J.D. from the Columbus School of Law at The Catholic University of America. She comes to O’Connell as a career switcher with substitute experience in the Arlington Diocese.

Mrs. Durdle is a U.S. Air Force reservist with a B.A. in international relations and African studies from the American Military University, and a M.S. in secondary education (history and social sciences) from Old Dominion University. She completed her student teaching at Washington-Lee High School in Arlington, where she taught 9th through 11th grade world and U.S. history.





Ms. Dawyot received her Masters of Education from Providence College and her B.A. in English literature (with minors in mathematics and philosophy) from The Catholic University of America. For the past four years, she has been teaching language arts and math at Seton School in Manassas, where she also moderated the student council and coached junior high girls soccer. She volunteers her time as a retreat team leader.

Ms. Gordon comes to O’Connell with six years of teaching experience in Maryland at the elementary and high school level. Most recently she has been teaching at Reid Temple Christian Academy, and was previously at Montrose Christian School. She holds a B.A. in English and Secondary Education from Virginia Tech and recently received her M.Ed. from Walden University. JENNY HALL


Mrs. DiNunzio has experience as a pre-school teacher, but more recently has been working as a substitute teacher, art teacher and reception coordinator at St. Agnes in Arlington. She holds two associate degrees from Youngstown State University—one in early childhood education and another in nursing. She brings her enthusiasm for student learning and her compassionate approach to student engagement to the O’Connell library.


Ms. Hall holds a B.A. in mathematics from the University of Texas and a Master’s in secondary education from Texas State University. She has taught high school mathematics at international schools in Costa Rica, Thailand and Japan. She recently returned to the U.S. and has been tutoring and substitute teaching in Arlington County. She also has training and experience as an International Baccalaureate teacher and an ESL instructor.

Mr. Hilla has a B.A. in Spanish and international relations from James Madison University, and is currently enrolled in the M.A. program in international commerce and policy at George Mason University. He studied abroad in Spain and recently completed a full-year teaching/service assignment at the Fe y Alegria School in the Dominican Republic, where all lessons and teacher meetings were conducted in Spanish. He has also served as a “guest educator” and substitute teacher in the D.C. public charter school system. ROBERT HORAN TECHNOLOGY/ JOURNALISM

Mr. Horan received his bachelor’s degree in communications with a concentration in media production from George Mason University. He has most recently been a part of the alumni service corps at Gonzaga College High School, where he taught television communication and assisted with campus ministry, retreats and media projects. At George Mason he served as the videographer for their Catholic campus ministry program and managed the Mason Cable Network.

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Ms. Johnson holds a B.A. in history and an M.Ed. in curriculum and instruction with a concentration in secondary history/social studies education. Both her undergraduate and graduate studies were completed at George Mason University. She most recently gained experience in the classroom at Lake Braddock Secondary School in Fairfax where she taught 9th grade history and geography. SISTER MARGARET LANGER, I.H.M. EXPANDED SERVICES

The school is blessed to have Sister Margaret in residence at Bishop O’Connell. As a part of her ministry, she has worked with special needs children and their families for 19 years. Most recently, she has been working with children with hearing loss in Montgomery County Public Schools. She holds a B.A. in social sciences and theology from Immaculata University and an M.Ed. in special education from the College of New Jersey. She later received her M.A. in deaf education from Gallaudet University. TRACEY LEIPOLD 11TH & 12TH GRADE COUNSELOR

Ms. Leipold is a licensed school counselor with a B.A. in Psychology (Le Moyne College) and an M.A. in School Counseling (Appalachian State University). She began her career as an Auxiliary Services Specialist at a residential treatment facility for abused children where she supervised 20 staff members and served as a therapeutic crisis intervention trainer. Her most recent position was at Cornell University as an assistant women’s soccer coach 14

and before that at Le Moyne College as head women’s soccer coach. In both roles, she worked with student-athlete academic progress, including progress toward degree requirements, working with NCAA requirements, accessing transcripts and test scores for eligibility and admissions, and advising families on academic requirements and FAFSA applications. MARIA MADDEN SOCIAL STUDIES

Ms. Madden originally did her student teaching at Bishop O’Connell, and most recently served as a permanent substitute teacher, including providing long-term coverage for a 9th grade religion class. She previously taught history in the middle school at Saint Theresa School in Ashburn, Va. She holds a B.A. in history from Marymount University. She also has experience in faith formation and in direct service to those in need in her community. KYLE MCCARTIN MULLER ACADEMIC SUPPORT

Mr. McCartin received his B.A. in anthropology followed by his M.Ed. in curriculum and instruction from the University of Virginia. He most recently served as a credit recovery teacher in the Coronado Unified School District in California, where he developed coursework for differentiated instruction to meet individual student needs in grades 9 through 12. MELINDA MOORE MATHEMATICS

Mrs. Moore comes to O’Connell after 11 years as a middle school mathematics and religion teacher at St. Mark School in Vienna. She earned a B.S. in industrial engineering from Penn State and holds

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her Virginia state teaching certification. She also holds an advanced catechist certificate and is experienced in RCIA. MARY CLARE MURRAY GERMAN

Mrs. Murray received her B.A. in art history with a minor in German from Bryn Mawr College and her teaching certificate in secondary education/foreign language from George Washington University. She is currently working on a master’s degree in world language teaching. She was a Fulbright Teaching Fellow in Germany in 1992-1993 and subsequently taught German in Arlington and Loudoun County schools. She has also been involved in special sacramental instruction at St. John the Beloved parish, including First Penance, First Communion and Confirmation. ALICIA PATAK 9TH & 10TH GRADE COUNSELOR)

Ms. Patak is a licensed school counselor with a B.S. in Human Development (State University of New York at Binghamton) and M.A. in School Counseling (Marymount University). Miss Patak completed a year-long internship at Washington-Lee High School in Arlington, in addition to a previous counseling internship at Chenango Forks High School in Binghamton. In her experiences she has provided individual counseling, conducted lunch groups on social issues such as anxiety and behavior management; developed and conducted classroom guidance lessons for all numerous grade levels, developed and implemented study skills groups, wrote letters of recommendation for college bound seniors, and collaborated with families, faculty and school administration, social workers and school psychologists.





Mr. Perez comes to O’Connell with experience as a classroom teacher in Catholic schools as well as in youth ministry and retreat facilitation. He holds a B.A. in history from Old Dominion University and most recently taught at St. Columba Catholic School in Oxon Hill, Md. MELISSA PORE COMPUTERS/ ENGINEERING

Mrs. Pore has been a K-12 technology teacher first in Texas but most recently in the Arlington Diocese. From 2009-2015 she was the computer teacher and STEAM coordinator at St. Thomas More, where she helped students successfully build and launch the first grade school satellite as part of the NASA CubeSat Initiative. She holds a B.A. in psychology from the University of Texas at Arlington and an M.Ed. from Texas Tech. GEOFFREY RIXON SOCIAL STUDIES

Mr. Rixon holds a B.A. in American Studies with a minor in theology from Fordham University. He is currently completing his M.Ed. with a concentration secondary social studies at Marymount University. Rixon got his start in the classroom in the Teach for America program, assigned as an ESL teacher for two years in Memphis, Tenn.

Mr. Ruff holds bachelor’s degrees from the University of Missouri in political science and journalism and a master’s in legislative affairs from George Washington University. He spent his early career on Capitol Hill in legislative and public affairs, media relations and communications. He rounded out his career in government as a special assistant and press secretary at the Department of Interior and the Department of Defense, before directing policy and communications in the corporate world. He is a career switcher who joined the O’Connell faculty last year as a long-term substitute teacher.

My success in life is the result of the O’Connell administration and faculty. O’Connell approaches its 60th year as a guiding beacon nationally for its unswerving commitment to academic rigor and learning. Of all my life’s accomplishments, I am most proud to be a graduate of O’Connell High School. Graduate from the class of ’68


Mr. Russo comes to O’Connell from Brooklyn, N.Y., where he has been teaching middle and high school students in Catholic schools. For the past ten years, he has been a theology teacher at Fontbonne Hall Academy, where he also worked with the guitar club, yearbook and campus ministry committee. He holds a B.A. in psychology from St. John’s University and an M.A. in theology from Immaculate Conception Seminary in Huntington, N.Y. DANIELLE SENSABAUGH SOCIAL STUDIES

Ms. Sensabaugh was the long-term substitute teacher last fall for AP Art History and Honors Humanities. She has her B.A. in art history from West Virginia University and her M.A. in art history with a specialization in modern European art from American University. She recently completed a year-long internship at the Phillips Collection in Washington, D.C.


Mr. Suemith holds a B.S. in physics from the University of Virginia, and has been working as a personal tutor to high school students in both math and science. He also serves as the director of youth ministry at Blessed Sacrament Church in Alexandria, bringing his passion for working with youth to his classroom. HENRY YOCKEY SCIENCE

Mr. Yockey is a 2013 graduate of Bishop O’Connell and a recent Virginia Tech graduate, where he received two degrees—a B.S. in physics and a B.S. in computational modeling and data analytics—while staying on the Dean’s List.

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Homecoming Week O’Connell went glam this year with their 2017 Homecoming theme, “A Knight on the Red Carpet.” Spirit Week included traditional classroom door decorating competitions, opportunities to dress us as television or movie characters, and a spirited pep rally. The week culminated with the varsity football game on Saturday afternoon and the “red carpet” Homecoming Dance in the gym that evening. Congratulations to this year’s Homecoming royalty: GRACE COOK and MARIO SUAREZ.


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Alumni Awards Dinner Annual Alumni Achievement Awards

As part of the 60th Anniversary Homecoming festivities, the O’Connell community gathered at the annual Alumni Awards Dinner on October 27, 2017 where the school recognized achievements in business and service, and inducted seven new alumni athletes into the Athletic Hall of Fame. Read more about these outstanding Knights and their individual achievements at

or younger at time of nomination, for significant accomplishments in business or professional life.


recognizes a graduate for significant accomplishments in business or professional life or for distinguished human service to their community, state or nation. YOUNG ALUMNI ACHIEVEMENT AWARD recognizes a graduate, age 40

KNIGHTS SERVICE AWARD recognizes a graduate for specific and meritorious service to their school and/or community.

Would you like to nominate a fellow alum? Nominations are accepted on a rolling basis and awardees are selected in late spring for the following fall. Visit

Alumni Achievement Awards Recipients


Robert J. Murphy ’67 presented by Katie Murphy Larkin ’82



Christine S. Salvador ’95 presented by Leah Salvador Tecson ’97

Michael J. Hayden ’74 presented by Father Denis Donahue


Dante N. Schiavo, M.D. ’01 presented by Diane Cerniglia

Athletic Hall of Fame Inductees

Matt Dwyer ’89

Colleen Knight Harper ’99




presented by Jeff Zdancewicz ’89

presented by Alberto Starace & Tommy Orndorff

presented by Michael Kiernan

presented by Tom McNichol

Rachael Schaffner Georgopoulos ’00 presented by Evan Stiles

Michelle Hart ’00


W. Reed Carpenter ’01 presented by Bill Carpenter ’76

Joseph C. Crivella III ’01 presented by Joe Crivella

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ALUMNI EVENTS REUNIONS ALUMNI ROLL&CALL Class of 1967 had an amazing 50-

year reunion the weekend of July 7-9. The class opened their festivities with a happy hour at Tysons Biergarten, enjoyed a barbeque picnic at Turkey Run Park and held a dinner dance event at Bull Run Country Club. Daytime events included a golf outing, an ultimate Frisbee tournament on the O’Connell athletic fields and a tour of the school. Reunion organizers were DENNIS and JEANNE WHYTE KRAFT (chairs), and coordinators included JULIE KIRCHNER VAN BUREN, LYNETTE MAIER SHIELDS, CANDY KANE, RICK DEUTSCH, DEBBIE PESTELL JOHNS, KATHY ORNBORNE GALLOWAY and JERRY VALENZI. A special thank you to the class for their generous donation to the Alumni Scholarship and Knight Fund.

Classes of 1961 and 1962 held a joint reunion Sept. 30 – Oct. 1. The class enjoyed

a tour of the Library of Congress, a dinner dance at the Washington Dulles Hilton, and a Mass and plaque dedication honoring several of their deceased classmates. There were over 110 in attendance thanks to the efforts of reunion coordinators KAY and JACK LARMER, KAYLEEN and HAP HADD, JANE and JOE COCHRAN, TERRY INNOCENTI; MIKE RUSH, MIKE SNEED, DENNIS DWYER and SARA JOSEPHSON.

Maribeth Rowe ’61, Jackie Tessitore ’61, Kathleen Owen ’61, Sara Parker ’61, Jim Hawkins ’61, Helena Jessel ’61 and Hap Hadd danced the night away at the Washington Dulles Hilton. Photo credit: Rick Noble ’62.

Class of 1972 gathered for their 45

year reunion at the home of BRIAN & KIM MERCER for a catered dinner. Many of the classmates also returned to O’Connell Sunday morning for a class Mass, a tour of the school and coffee and doughnuts in the faculty lounge. Time to reconnect…pictured here are Patricia Donnelly ’62, Sister Annette “Betsy” Amendolia ’63, Mary Amendolia ’61. Photo credit: Rick Noble ’62.

Dennis Dwyer ’61 and Jackie Tessitore ’62 cut a rug at the dinner dance. Photo credit: Rick Noble ’62.

Class of 1965 gathered for a joint 70th

Three 1965 classmates catch up on old times. Photo credit: Tacey Battley.

birthday party at Samuel Beckett’s Irish Pub in Shirlington this fall. Several of the 50-year class reunion coordinators stayed on the committee to help plan this fun event. Many thanks to: TACEY BATTLEY, EILEEN WARD BEALE, BETTY ANN MAGUIRE CULHANE, JEANNIE HANSOHN, MIKE LUBELEY, JOE MCCLELLAN, CHUCK MINCHIK, TOM SHEAN, BOB WELSH and ROSEMARY WILHELM.

Eileen Ward Beale, Maggie Ward and Viki Hopkins McKenzie at Samuel Beckett’s Irish Pub. Photo credit: Tacey Battley.


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The class of 1972 remembered their deceased classmates with a special Mass in the school chapel and reminisced over doughnuts and coffee in the faculty lounge.

The class of 1967 celebrated 50 years with numerous activities, including a day on the links. Photo credit: Alan Linde.

 

Photo credit: Alan Linde.

Joyce Franklin, Joyce Koons and John O’Brien reconnect at the Pavillions at Turkey Run. Photo credit: Alan Linde.

Classmates cap off a fantastic weekend of reunion events at the Bull Run Country Club. Photo credit: Alan Linde.

Class of 1977 enjoyed a weekend full of

events starting with a gathering at Brion’s Grille in Fairfax and a trip to the Reston Town Center fall festival where classmates jammed to the Fabulous Dialtones with classmate PETER WARREN on guitar and harmonica. The class held a Mass at the school and toured O’Connell – some for the first time in 40 years! Reunion coordinators were MARK INGRAO,

Upcoming Reunions

The class of 1977 kicked off a reunion weekend at Brion’s Grille. Photo credit Suzanne Nirschl Brown ’77.


Reconnecting at Reston Town Center and enjoying the sounds of the Fabulous Dialtones. Photo credit: Suzanne Nirschl Brown.

Class of 1987 celebrated 30

years with cocktails and appetizers at Chima in Tysons Corner in September. Reunion organizers were


Class of 1968 reunion committee is already making plans for a 50-year reunion to be held in 2018. Stay tuned for new information on the venue and dates. Please contact alumni to be put in touch with the organizers. Class of 2007 - Stay tuned – Some of your classmates are in the planning process. To be added to the interest list, please contact Class of 2012 plans to gather for a five-year reunion in late 2017. Stay tuned for a full report and photos! More information can be found at Ice Hockey Alumni Game – Tuesday, Dec. 26 at 6 p.m. Kettler Capitals Iceplex in Arlington. All former Knights Hockey players are invited back on the ice for a little friendly competition and a lot of fun. The cost is $25 per player. Please contact Coach Flip Collins at to register.

Reunions 101 Thinking about your next reunion? Join the O’Connell alumni office for a 20-minute teleconference on the first Friday of every month at noon. RSVP at for dial-in information.

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published an epic novel about Colorado, entitled Never Summer. The book is available on Amazon or Trineday.

WILLIAM EVINGER ’61 was recently named to the Wakefield High School Hall of Fame. He served as an Arlington County teacher for 30 years, with over 20 years at Wakefield. While at Wakefield, Evinger was the Social Studies chair, and a master teacher, writing and editing nine books and other publications. He also has consulted for the National Geographic Society on several film series, and for GED Testing Service and Houghton Mifflin textbook publisher.

JUSTUS RIEK ’61 has published

a technical paper in the Journal of Humanistic Mathematics (July 2016) titled “Simple Tools with the Nontrivial Implications for the Assessment of Hypothesis-Evidence Relationships: The Interrogator’s Fallacy.” The author welcomes questions and comments at

TIM MURPHY ’68 stopped by O’Connell this summer to donate his original copies of The Visor and other DJO memorabilia such as his prom program and commencement program.  CATHERINE KEATING ’80 recently received the St. Thomas of Villanova Alumni Medal from the Villanova University Alumni Association (VUAA). Keating is 1984 graduate of Villanova University and holds a J.D. from the University of Virginia. She is also the 2015 recipient of the Bishop O’Connell Distinguished Alumni Award.

Classmates HECTOR HIDALGO ’68 AND JOSEPH GUERIN ’68 returned

to O’Connell earlier this fall for an impromptu visit and tour. TOM CSEH ’63 received the

prestigious Outstanding Staff Contribution Award for 2016 at U.S. Security Associates (USSA) Winner’s Circle XII presentation in Phoenix, Ariz. Tom, who is Andrews International’s regional director for operations in Latin America, was honored for the unprecedented growth in his business area in 2016. Andrews International provides private security services in Honduras and Nicaragua. 20

 JAMES O’BRIEN ’77 of O’Brien and Keane in Arlington, Va., was the architect for the final design of the recently dedicated Holy Name of Jesus Cathedral in Raleigh, N.C. The Most Reverend Michael F. Burbidge, Bishop of Arlington, was the Bishop of Raleigh during the Cathedral’s planning and initial construction phases. Pictured here is O’Brien with Bishop Burbidge at the contract signing.


 ALLEN FITZPATRICK ’72 is currently touring with the stage production of Walt Disney’s The Little Mermaid. This summer, the company performed at Wolf Trap National Park for the Performing Arts in Vienna, Va.

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 STEPHEN LONG ’82 was inducted into the Mount St. Mary’s University Athletic Hall of Fame in January 2017 for his athletic achievements in Track and Field while attending the college in Emmitsburg, Md. where he set many records as a decathlete who qualified for the NCAA Championships twice in the pole vault and all four years in the 4x400.

 The Arlington Center for Leadership Excellence has awarded JOHN BROUGH ’82, O’Connell’s Board of Governors chairman, with the Leadership Legacy Ethics Award by Arlington’s Center for Leadership Excellence. Brough, Chief Executive Officer and Director of Chain Bridge Bank, serves on the board of trustees of the Virginia Banker’s Association, School of Bank Management and the board of directors of the Greater McLean Chamber of Commerce. He and his wife, Karin, are also the parents of DJO alumni Joseph ’14 and Peter ’16, and current senior, Virginia ’18.

JAMES MCCRERY ’83 has been named the director of classical architecture and urbanism at Catholic University’s School of Architecture and Planning.  ALONSO ABUGATTAS ’86

serves as the Natural Resources Manager for Arlington County Parks. Current O’Connell students with an interest in ecology and biodiversity are following his blog in their science classes, and you can too at

BILL MCADAMS ’88 wrote

and directed the documentary Jose Canseco – The Truth Hurts, winner of multiple film festival awards. The film is now available on Amazon Prime, and he has donated several DVDs to the O’Connell library.

CASEY OWENS DURST ’94 assumed command of U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s (CBP) Baltimore Field Office. She oversees CBP border security as well as trade and travel facilitation operations throughout the mid-Atlantic states. She began her career as a U.S. Customs Service inspector at Washington Dulles and held numerous leadership positions across the country. 

CASEY CRAWFORD ’95, co-founder and CEO of Movement Mortgage, is lending his time and talent to a new initiative that brings business, education and nonprofit efforts together to make a lasting impact on communities. The result is Movement School, a tuition-free public charter school in West Charlotte, N.C. that opened its doors for the first time this fall. To learn more visit FR. THOMAS CAVANAUGH ’99,

Parochial Vicar at St. Theresa Catholic Church in Ashburn, has recently coauthored the book How to Win Friends for Christ One Conversation at a Time. It is available on Amazon in both paperback and Kindle editions. Rusty Cage, a 90s cover band performing in the Washington metro area, boasts two O’Connell connections. NICK ABBOTT ’03 plays guitar, and FORMER DJO ENGLISH TEACHER, DAN CULLER, plays bass. Follow them

on Facebook (Rusty Cage 123).

 On November 30, 2016, DANNY BESSETTE ’02 received a double lung transplant due to severe lung disease resulting from cystic fibrosis (CF). As he approaches the one year mark, Danny is happy, healthy, traveling, building a career, and enjoying a full life that was previously not possible. Throughout this experience Danny has been blessed by the O’Connell community through fundraising, thoughtful messages, generous gifts, and a network that is always willing to lend a hand. The journey leading up to transplant and during recovery has been long and challenging for both Danny and his wife, JACKIE HEPPES BESSETTE ’03, but their O’Connell family has been a huge source of strength and faithful prayers. On Danny’s transplant day his lung capacity was at 23 percent, and as of October he is at 108 percent - the prayers have worked and the future is very bright. Now part of their post-transplant life includes public speaking and helping other families who are facing challenging medical diagnosis, CF, or transplant by sharing their experience. Both Danny and Jackie are so incredibly thankful for all the support and invite you to follow their journey on their blog,, or catch up with Danny at the DJO ice hockey games where he enjoys his fifth  year as a member of the coaching staff. 

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Marine Corps Marathon 2017 Congratulations to all the O’Connell alumni who took part in the 2017 Marine Corps Marathon on Oct. 22. With over 20,000 runners participating, we spotted a few familiar faces along the route: Former DJO cross country runner, JOSEPH BROUGH ’14, is in his final year at the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis. He kept up an incredible average 5:51 per mile pace to cross the finish line at 2:33:31, placing him 13th overall!

Over 20 O’Connell Knights joined the CyberKnights Club and DANIEL PEREZ ’05 during Cyber Security Awareness month. Perez talked about the necessary certification, security clearances and education needed to be an expert in the field. 

Other O’Connell community members who finished this marathon included sisters KAREN HATHAWAY VIANI ’89 and CHRISTINE HATHAWAY SPANN ’90, who were joined by Christine’s husband Charlie, along with friends, Megan Hilal and Kristen Day.


has won two prestigious film festival awards, the Audience Choice Award at the DELCO Film Festival and a Silver Award in the Best Short Documentary category from the International Independent Film Awards for “The Free Agent Fan,” available for viewing on Vimeo.

“Our brother NICHOLAS ’97 is a Marine and will be going back to Afghanistan in the spring,” said Christine Spann. “Seeing all the Marines and running along the Blue Mile hit very close to home for me. A group called Run to Remember built a Wear Blue Mile along Hains Point honoring fallen Marines. Faces of the fallen tribute posters line a journey of 1064 steps. Following these posters, their family members line the course waving flags and cheering for the runners. While running by the posters it was silent, so the cheering beyond was even more meaningful. At the finish, Marines are lined up and they are all cheering. I just wanted to stop and thank each of them for their service!”

ESTEFANIA BORDA ’06 wed Kris Denzel on April 22, 2017 at St. Anthony of Padua Catholic Church in Falls Church. Celebrating with the new Mr. and Mrs. Denzel were plenty of O’Connell alumni, including her siblings (pictured): ALEJANDRA ’09, DIEGO ’10, CRISTINA ’12 and future Knight, Leonardo. The couple now resides in Annandale.


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PATRICK HUGHES ’15 is half of the University of Mary Washington duo who captured the Intercollegiate Tennis Association’s Southeast Regional doubles title this year. He and his doubles partner, Derek Hagino, started the tournament unseeded and ended up defeated their opponents 6-4, 6-3, in the final.

from Georgetown University School of Medicine in May. She invited Dr. Stabile to join in the celebration. FRANCIS NGUYEN ’10 and CLAIRE STEINDAM ’10 were married 

on September 23, 2017 at St. Philip Catholic Church in Falls Church. Several O’Connell alumni were part of the wedding party, including MOLLY CABBAGE ’10, MEGAN MESZAROS ’10, MATT TYRPAK ’10, and CATHERINE NGUYEN ’16. Francis

and Claire are living in Reston.

EDDIE GLEESON ’16 and his father, Mike Gleeson, caught a round of golf with actor Bill Murray at the Willis Case Golf Course in Denver, Colo during the 45-year reunion of Regis University.

VI DOUNG ’09 earned her M.D. 2LT DAN BYRNE ’12 married Caroline Butler at Mount St. Mary’s University on April 23, 2017. Dan is a member of the Army National Guard. 

Earlier this year, former O’Connell dance team member THALIA FALCON ’14 attended a master class taught by fellow alumnus, GEORGE JONES, JR. ’02. Jones is a celebrity choreographer and has worked extensively with Britney Spears, Nicky Minaj and Jennifer Lopez. Falcon is a senior at Loyola University Maryland, where she is a member of their dance team and also the Greysounds a cappella group.

JESSICA GLIOT ’17 was named 

an Extraordinary Teen by Arlington Magazine and was featured in their July/August 2017 magazine. Gliot is an extraordinary vocalist who shared her talents through O’Connell’s music and theater department, and as a cantor at St. James in Falls Church. She is also an accomplished seamstress who tirelessly designed and constructed costumes for DJO theater productions, while maintaining a 4.0 GPA. She is currently studying musical theater at DeSales University in Pennsylvania. FALL 2017 | THE KNIGHTS’ PAGES | 6oth Anniversary Edition


IN MEMORIAM The Bishop O’Connell community remembers and prays for those who have passed into eternal life and offers condolences to their families. LOUISE ARCHER ’62 April 11, 2017 CHRISTINE FRANCES BALTRYM ’97 August 26, 2017 RAYMOND BEAUDRY ’61 May 1, 2017 SISTER M. ST. KATHLEEN BLASTON, I.H.M. August 30, 2017 CRAIG BORROR June 29, 2017 Sibling of faculty member Diane Miller

WILLIAM JAMES BROOKSKENNEY August 23, 2017 Parent of Patrick ’00, Alexandra ’02, Cate ’08, Annie ’10

THOMAS JOSEPH CASEY May 25, 2017 Sibling of Board of Governors member, Colleen Leber

JOANNE CLARK July 13, 2017 Former O’Connell employee and parent of Larry ’79 and John ’81


THOMAS GRAHAM March 24, 2017

WALTER RABE July 23, 2017

Bishop of Richmond

Grandparent of Thomas ’07, Julie ’09, Peter ’12, Christopher ’18 and Joseph ’21

Kim ’82, Walt ’84, Victoria ’78, Janet ’87, Amy ’94

WILLIAM DURYEE ’61 September 19, 2017



Father of faculty member Greg Haas

Parent of faculty member, Sara Coon and grandparent of Caroline ’18

CARMEL DEMPSEY FITZPATRICK August 6, 2017 Grandmother of Megan ’09, Claire ’10 and Madeline ’12

CAPTAIN THOMAS A. FRANCIS July 4, 2017 Parent of Amy ’79, Thomas ’81, Anne ’81, John ’83, Sister Immaculata ’84, Raymond ’86, Joseph ’88, Lisa ’90 and Catherine ’92 and many grandchildren

MARIE GALLAGHER May 11, 2017 Parent of Mary Ellen ’80 and Betsy ’83 and grandparent to Colleen ’13, Paul ’14, Daniel 15, Mary Katheryne ’16, Katheryne ’17, Hugh ’18, Mary ’18, Patrick 19 and Daniel ‘20


MARY LYNCH COY ’72 April 17, 2017

Parent of Beth ’86 and Patrick ’81, mother-in-law of Boomer Buckreis ’86, grandparent of Joseph ’16 and Benjamin ’19

LINDA CROUCH ’63 October 17, 2016

FRANK GALLAGHER September 21, 2017

ANDREW CUNNINGHAM ’72 November 9, 2016 COLLEEN TINSLEY CYBROWSKI ’01 October 5, 2017 ARTHUR DEVLIN May 22, 2017 Parent of Marie ’80, Sheila ’82, Jane ’85 and Liz ’88, grandparent of Meagan Leverone ’15, Brendan Leverone ’19, Kyle Leverone ’19 and Maura Leverone ’19 and former member of the Board of Governors

Parent of Beth ’86 and Patrick ’81, mother-in-law of Boomer Buckreis ’86, grandparent of Joseph ’16 and Benjamin ’19

KATHRYN GILL-DELANEY August 27, 2017 Mother-in-law of faculty member Reno Cassidy and grandparent of Erin ’00

DORTHY (TIA) GILLANDERS GARNER ’85 March 28, 2017 Sibling of Elizabeth ’87 and Robert ’87

KIERON MICHAEL HART June 30, 2017 Son of coach and faculty member, Rick Hart


Father-in-law of faculty member, Todd Sabatino

Former faculty member

MARK HOUSTON June 5, 2017 Parent of Celina ’17

TOM HUGHES ’72 November 9, 2016 PATRICIA ANNE JONES January 20, 2017 Parent of Julianne ’95

LORRAINE MELTON September 3, 2017 Former faculty member and spouse of long time music director Carl Melton

MARY LOU MILLER May 24, 2017 Parent of Colin ’84, Christopher ’84, Danine ’88 and Shawn ’94. Grandparent of Conor ’13, Taylor ’13 and Elise ’18.

DEBORAH RONIS MOHR ’74 June 21, 2017 Sibling of James ’78

JOANNE O’HARA NEWTON ’72 June 17, 2017

TASHA SMITH August 28, 2017 Parent of Nate ’18

CHERYL STEMBERGER October 3, 2017 Parent of Lily ’18 and Claire ’16

MURIEL STRICKLAND October 30, 2016 Parent of Mary ’72, Stephen ’73, Elizabeth ’74, Michael ’76, Kathleen ’87 (d) and Teresa (d)

EDGAR TUCKER May 28, 2017 Grandparent of Sarah ’17 and Mary ‘21

PATRICIA COBERT TYSON ’66 January 9, 2017 FRANCES WEIDLER July 8, 2017 Mother-in-law of faculty member, Ron Isaacson

JOHN “JACK” YOHE, JR. ’71 May 29, 2017

Sibling of Fr. Jack O’Hara ’68

Parent of Michael ’05 and sibling of Joe ’76, Alice ’75 and Marianne ’73



Grandparent of Zachary ’11 and Catherine Irvin ’14 and parent of Jo Anne ’67

Grandparent of Andrew ’08 and Valerie ’10

John Gutter, former Asst. Principal for Student Life at Bishop O’Connell, was posthumously honored at the University of Rhode Island, where he was inducted into their Army ROTC Hall of Fame. O’Connell alumni from the past three decades will remember Lt. Col. Gutter in his role as Assistant Principal of Student Life. But few know of his previous life as a scholarship football player at URI, followed by a 20 year career as a U.S. Marine Corps officer, serving two tours in Vietnam. He was wounded in combat in 1965 while coming to the aid of a fellow Marine and spent seven months recovering. He retired in 1984 at which time he joined the faculty at Bishop O’Connell, where he was involved in student development, facilities management and coaching. Lt. Col. Gutter retired from O’Connell in 2011 and passed away in 2012. “John loved Bishop O’Connell High School and he made important contributions to the personal development of thousands of students during his tenure. He also lent his project management experience to a number of major building projects,” said Head of School, Dr. Joseph Vorbach ’83.

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Sibling of Anne ’76

KEN HICKEY July 1, 2017



KATHLEEN SCHAMEL ’77 June 17, 2017

60 Hours of Service In honor of our school’s 60th Anniversary, alumni, students, parents and complete families have pledged 60 hours of service to their parish, their neighborhood or their community, in general. So far, more than 50 individuals have pledged a total of 3,000 hours, many completing far more than they pledged. Here are just a few examples:

Alumna, HELEN DE CHABERT STANBRO ’65, has been knitting and crocheting prayer shawls and baby blankets for the Visiting Nurse Association to distribute to anyone who needs them. Freshman MEAGAN HOSKER ‘21

volunteers for Spirit Open Equestrian Program, which is a therapeutic riding center for children and adults with physical and intellectual challenges.

Senior RYAN ELDER ’18 has been volunteering with KEEN, a recreational program and open gym for peers with special needs. The family of English teacher, MARY LOU WENTZEL,

spent much of their summer volunteering their time to help a Catholic school in Blacksburg move from their old facility to a new school building. Members of the O’Connell community have been busy baking cookies for a prison ministry, organizing parish dinners, assisting with backpack drives and food pantries, greeting Honor Flights, serving as lectors and Eucharistic Ministers in their parishes, supporting programs for underserved children in the local community, working donation events for disaster relief around the world, and much more.

There’s still time for you to submit your service, too. Find out more at

A 60 Year Tradition of Service “The spirit which flows through every phase of O’Connell life finds another outlet in the various service clubs. These worthwhile organizations perform several valuable services to our community. Whether it is the Red Cross stuffing candy into Christmas stockings, the Inner-City group braving the early morning air, or the Keys and Keyettes collecting for cerebral palsy—one will always sense the feelings of duty and responsibility that characterize these teenagers’ admirable work.” - from the 1966 Bishop O’Connell Yearbook The Shield

The Red Cross Club fills Christmas stockings with candy for the poor.

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Why We Give Michelle (and Scott) Taylor English Department Faculty Member MISSION, EXCELLENCE, VALUES, INCLUSION, DIVERSITY, OPPORTUNITY Scott and I give every year to the Knight Fund because we truly believe in the mission of Bishop O’Connell to provide not only an excellent academic experience for our students but also a nurturing experience centered in Catholic values. We are an inclusive school, and one does not need to be Catholic to benefit from or appreciate the special environment we offer our students. We provide a rigorous academic curriculum as well as an abundance of sports and extracurricular activities. Where we are able to go a step

Chrissy Salvador ’95 Head Coach, Royalette Dance Team Director of Spirit Teams 2017 Knights Service Award Recipient I don’t think of O’Connell as just the high school I went to, but a family that I’m a part of. I have always been so proud to call myself an alum. I started coaching the Royalette Dance Team right after I graduated from Virginia Tech. That was 18 years ago, and I couldn’t be more grateful. I came across a quote I saw on a shirt, and it said, “Tradition Never Graduates.” It was short, simple and to the point. I loved it so much, I’ve used it as the theme of the last two Royalette reunions in 2011 and 2016. I didn’t understand the importance of giving back until I worked in the O’Connell Advancement Office. During those two years, I built relationships with the faculty and staff. I had the fortunate opportunity working alongside parent volunteers and other alumni on committees and fundraisers. I even continued to serve on the Gala & Auction 26

beyond other schools in the area is our ability to additionally provide moral and spiritual guidance for our students at a crucial time in their lives as they are on the edge of adulthood. During my time teaching at O’Connell, I have personally seen the benefits our scholarship opportunities can provide our students. I have seen kids who are in need in many different ways thrive in our caring and inclusive school community. I have seen students go on to achieve success that might not have been possible without the benefit of a

scholarship or financial aid. The most important thing we can do as adults is nurture future generations to be successful and upstanding citizens. It is why I teach, and why Scott and I give back. We encourage you to do so as well.

committee for several years, and chaired the event in 2011. I wasn’t always able to write a check, but I was able to give my time. It was the least I could do. O’Connell has given me so much. I thank them for the friends I have made over the years. They are classmates, teammates, former Royalettes and their families, colleagues and parent volunteers. I consider them family, my O’Connell Family. The tradition at O’Connell is unmeasurable. From SuperDance to the Soup Drive, we learned to give back as students. As alumni, we need to remember everything that O’Connell did for us. It made us the adults we are today. We have met lifelong friends here and learned life changing lessons whether we realize it or not. It’s the same O’Connell because of the tradition. It’s a different O’Connell because of the time. When you get to that point in your

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life when you can give back, whether it’s your time or a monetary donation, just realize it makes a world of difference. No matter how big or small, it will make an impact on O’Connell and its continued tradition. I believe that I’m a true testament that Tradition Never Graduates, and I’m proud to be part of this family and the future of O’Connell.


Annual Giving Breaking the Record! With the help of so many generous supporters, the 2016-2017 academic year was the most successful year in the history of the Bishop O’Connell Knight Fund. We exceeded our goal and closed out at more than $609,000 in unrestricted donations. Every dollar raised supports the programs and events that make the O’Connell Experience exceptional. These gifts meant a better year for each one of our students. The O’Connell legacy of outstanding academics and our vibrant community is kept strong through the tax-deductible financial contributions of the Bishop O’Connell community. We extend our deepest thanks to the alumni, current parents, parents of alumni, faculty, staff, and friends who made gifts to support the 2016-2017 Knight Fund, Bishop O’Connell’s primary source of annual funding outside of tuition.

Please consider making a gift or pledge to the Knight Fund for the 2017-2018 school year.







#OneDayAllKnights What a great day to be a Knight! Last spring, a blizzard of generosity made Bishop O’Connell’s third annual #OneDayAllKnights a resounding success. In just 24 hours, 348 Knights gave, crushing our goal of 250 donors. A total of $105,195 was raised for the Knight Fund! Thank you, Knights!




2016: 225

2017: 348




Were you one of the 120 people who made their first-ever gift to the Knight Fund last year on #OneDayAllKnights? Thank you! Your gift continues to make a difference in the lives of our students. You don’t have to wait until the next #OneDayAllKnights to extend the O’Connell Legacy. Sign up for a recurring monthly gift by joining the Faithful Knights Monthly Giving Program and ensure that the tradition of academic excellence, service to others, and Catholic education continues for generations to come.

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Planned Giving


For 60 years, Bishop O‘Connell High School has prepared students for living lives of purpose and distinction. Today, the O’Connell legacy lives on... through you. A planned gift to O’Connell is a powerful testimonial to your belief in the value of Catholic education and a lasting tribute that will ensure the benefits of Catholic education for generations. A legacy gift to Bishop O’Connell High School will make a positive and important impact on our mission to provide students with an education rooted in the life of Christ.

What is the Bishop O’Connell Legacy Society? The Legacy Society is a special group of supporters who include Bishop O’Connell High School in their wills or estate plans. Their gifts provide essential financial support for all aspects of Bishop O’Connell’s educational programs and operations. Common types of gifts that qualify are: • Bequests (gifts made through your will or living trust) • Charitable gift annuities • Gifts of retirement plan assets after your lifetime • Charitable remainder trusts


Calling the Classes of 1961, 1962, 1963, 1964, 1965

Take A Bite Out of Your Taxes by Making a Gift to DJO Before the End of the Calendar Year!

Donors aged 70 ½ years and older are required by the IRS to make annual withdrawals from their IRAs. A wonderful option for those who do not need the cash from their Required Minimum Distribution is to use the funds to make a Qualified Charitable Distribution (QRD) to a favorite charity, such as Bishop O’Connell High School. HOW DOES IT WORK? To make a QCD from an IRA to Bishop O’Connell High School, the following is required: • You must be at least 70 ½ years old on the date of the distribution.

How do I join?

• Donors can donate up to $100,000 each calendar year from their IRA(s).

Membership is open to anyone who names Bishop O’Connell in their estate plans. Contact the Advancement Office so that we may include you in the listing of Legacy Society members.

• Submit a form/letter to the IRA custodian, requesting that the check be made payable directly to Bishop O’Connell High School.

If you would like to hear more about the benefits of joining the Legacy Society, please contact Kimberly Aubry, Director of Advancement at or (703) 237-1447.

The distribution will count towards your required minimum distribution and will not be included in taxable income. A QRD from an IRA, if made directly to a charity, is tax-free to the donor. For example, if at age 70 ½, your RMD is $50,000 and you are in the 25% tax bracket, you will be taxed at ordinary income rates and owe $12,500 in federal taxes. Depending on where you reside, state tax may be due as well. If you have your RMD sent directly to a charity, you are not required to pay taxes on that donation. It is a wonderful way to support Bishop O’Connell while efficiently managing your taxes.

Planning ahead is a critical step in being a wise steward of the gifts with which God has blessed us. Thank you for considering leaving a legacy at Bishop O’Connell High School for future generations!

We encourage you to seek legal and tax advice in connection with gift and planning matters as neither Bishop O’Connell High School nor its employees can provide any legal or tax advice.


Members of the Bishop O’Connell Legacy Society

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QUESTIONS? Contact Kimberly Aubry, Director of Advancement at 703-237-1447 or This is not intended to be tax advice. Please contact your tax advisor or attorney for more information.

Why We Sponsor Partnering as a sponsor with Bishop O’Connell High School not only helps the school, it is beneficial to your business. Take advantage of unique branding opportunities and exposure for your company online, in person and throughout our community of more than 18,000 local alumni and current families. Choose one of our popular sponsor packages or a custom package that suits your specific needs. Learn more about the benefits of being an O’Connell sponsor by visiting:

PREMIUM SPONSORS Thank you to the following businesses who have generously supported all flagship events at Bishop O’Connell in 2016-2017.

Multi-Event Sponsors

BATTLEFIELD FORD Stephan E. Fay ’71 and Ann Marie Morris Fay ’71



James Koons ’69 and Cecelia Zimmermann Koons ’69

Mark Goetzman ’77 and Martin Walsh ’62

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Summary of Contributions ADVANCEMENT REVENUE July 1, 2016 through June 30, 2017 Annual Fund

$ 609,501

Special Events

$ 246,401

Other Restricted Gifts






Misc income



United Way/CFC



igKnight the Vision Campaign

$ 1,130,168


$ 2,280,468

Summary of Operations REVENUE Tuition/Fees

$ 16,457,314


$ 2,280,468

Student Activities

$ 1,197,614

Auxiliary Enterprises


Other Income

$ 462,590

Diocesan Contribution

$ 313,000



TOTAL REVENUE $21,602,293

$ 21,602,293

EXPENSES Instructional

$ 8,345,197


$ 2,969,289

Plant Operations

$ 2,703,709

Student Activities

$ 2,656,073


Financial Assistance

$ 2,479,700


Auxiliary Business Services

$ 1,556,945



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$ 20,710,913


Plans for new chapel and three story academic wing facing Trinidad Street.


igKnight the Vision Campaign Prayer 

Rendering of the proposed front entrance showing cutaway with student commons area.

Following the success of the $12 million Time is Now strategic initiative, Bishop O’Connell hired a leading architectural firm to study our building usage and to develop a facility master site plan to guide our decision making on capital improvements. The resulting plan has became a roadmap that lays out a well-reasoned and systematic approach for recapitalizing our 60-year-old building. In the development of this plan, we sought input from a wide cross section of the school community. Stakeholders were invited to participate in a visioning process, meet one-on-one with the Head of School, attend focus groups, and be interviewed for a feasibility study. Participants responded positively to the idea of moving forward with the first two phases of the eight phase master site plan: a three-story academic wing with a 180 seat chapel on the Trinidad Street side of the building, and a new front entrance and pedestrian plaza. The first step needed was to find a suitable home in the immediate neighborhood of O’Connell for a new I.H.M. Convent. The study found that the current I.H.M. Convent is the least utilized and oldest section of the school. In support of our campaign vision, the Diocese of Arlington purchased a beautiful, brand-new, six-bedroom home for our I.H.M. Sisters, less than two blocks from O’Connell. The Sisters plan to be moved into their new home before Christmas. This exciting development sets the stage for razing the convent building as early as next summer to make way for the new academic wing and chapel. Initial architectural design work has begun and an application for a use permit amendment has been submitted to Arlington County. The goal is to have these first two phases of work done in time for the start of the 2020-21 school year. For more information about igKnight the Vision, visit our campaign website at or contact Kimberly Aubry, Director of Advancement at or 703-237-1447.



ather, through the intercession of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, we come to You in faith ready to bring about a new and bold vision for the future of Bishop O’Connell High School. We ask for Your blessing in order that we might conform every student in the image of Your Son, Our Lord, Jesus Christ. We thank You for the many blessings You have bestowed upon our community, and ask that You bless the efforts of this campaign. Through the gift of Your Holy Spirit, Guide our thoughts and increase our understanding of the opportunity and responsibility before us. Inspire us to make choices that are rooted in the spirit of our founding and beneficial for the future of our school. Through Our Lord, Jesus Christ, Your Son who lives and reigns with You in the unity of the Holy Spirit, One God, forever and ever, Amen. WRITTEN BY REV. GREGORY THOMPSON, CHAPLAIN

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2017 Diamond Jubilee Gala & Auction Thank you to all of our generous sponsors, donors, dinner guests and online bidders who made the 2017 Diamond Jubilee Gala & Auction such a smashing success. Over 450 guests joined Gala co-chairs KARIN BROUGH and ALICIA COOK and their committee at the McLean Hilton Tysons Corner last February for a festive evening celebrating the school and raising money for academic programs at O’Connell. Ticket holders were treated to serenades by the O’Connell Singers, dinner music by the O’Connell Jazz Band, and post-dinner dancing to the high-energy sounds of professional rockers, Rhythm6.


Anonymous Alcalde & Fay / Kevin J. Fay ’73 and Nancy Fay Gary and Sue Andres Battlefield Ford / Stephan E. Fay ’71 and AnnMarie Morris Fay ’71 Cushman & Wakefield FACTS Management Co. FLIK Independent School Dining Jim Koons Automotive Companies / James Koons ’69 and Cecelia Zimmermann Koons ’69 Sheehy Auto Stores / Vince and Mary Sheehy Daniel and Monica Stabile Walsh, Colucci, Lubeley & Walsh, P.C. / Mark Goetzman ’77 RAISE THE PADDLE HEROES

Anonymous (6) Murl and Lois Altoft Gary and Sue Andres George and Ellen Aschenbrenner John J. Brough II ’82 and Karin Brough Fred and Suzette Brynn Robert E. Buckreis ’86 and Beth Gallagher Buckreis ’86 Michael and Yovanka Butchko Ethan and Felicia Carr Diane C. Cerniglia Gregory and Anne Colevas James and Kathleen Connor Jeffrey and Jennifer Conroy


Sean and Alicia Cook David and Patricia Copenhaver David Family Skip and Joanie Dawson Michael McCormick and Tracy Doherty-McCormick Daniel and Kerry Drummond Dennis E. Dwyer ’61 and Charlotte Dwyer Miguel Fernandez and Maria-Pia Jarquin Fernandez ’85 Lynda and Stephen Flippin Brian and Jennifer Gradle Michael and Adrienne Griffen Gregory Haas Jeff and Laura Hales David and Katherine Hamilton John and Cindi Harkes Carl and Susan Hayashi Robert and Susan Howard Owen and Mary Jones James Klote and Mary McNerney Klote ’84 Duane and Carleen Knauf Christopher and Christine Lettieri Scott and Diane Major John and Merita McCormack Charles and Linda McDonough Daniel Metzmaier and Lisa Phelan Bonnie Moore Edward and Colleen Morche Edward Murn IV and Caroline Murn John and Lisa Nihill David Pizzano ’88 and Michelle Benedi Pizzano ’89 Rev. Christopher J. Pollard Dave Seager and Kristina Olsen Mario and Amy Shaffer Ian and Cyndi Simmons Alan and Heidi Snyder Charles Spann and Christine Hathaway Spann ’90 Kevin and Mary Jane Spurlock Daniel and Lisa Verdonik Joseph E. Vorbach ’83 and Colleen Vorbach Brian and Caroline Weimer Anthony E. Young ’62

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Anonymous (6) Adeler Jewelers Ali Al-Kouraishi and Yasmine Abdo Al-Kouraishi Ambar in Clarendon ANN Nails Argia’s Cucina Rustica Aroma Indian Cuisine Jason and Dianna Baltimore Bangkok 54 Restaurant & Bar Big Wheel Bikes Arthur and Wendy Bonair

Brick’s Pizza John J. Brough II ’82 and Karin Brough Fred and Suzette Brynn Adam and Sarah Burrowbridge Cafe Italia Restaurant Café Oggi Ethan and Felicia Carr Cassatt’s Cafe & Gallery Cassianna Spa Casual Adventure CB - Citizen Burger Bar Celtic House Irish Pub & Restaurant

Save the Date! We’re returning to the McLean Hilton on February 3, 2018 to celebrate “Havana Knights.” What do we have in store for you? ✦✦ Student Performances ✦✦ Cigar Tent ✦✦ Cocktail Hour ✦✦ Dinner & Dancing ✦✦ Silent & Live Auctions ✦✦ Ever-popular Rhythm6

Find out more and reserve your seats today at

The Hathaway, Spann and Viani families enjoy the Gala.

Diane C. Cerniglia Champps Americana Cherrydale Motors Company Flowers Sean and Alicia Cook Copperwood Tavern Crystal City Sports Pub Crystal Thai Andre and Geraldine D’Arcangelo David and Regina DiLuigi Jim Dinegar Colin Disch Dogwood Tavern Daniel and Kerry Drummond Bill A. Duryee ’61 and Patricia Duryee Mehdi El Alaoui El Paso Cafe Darlene A. Evans Famous Dave’s Fettoosh Fit to Be Tan Gaijin Ramen Pho Douglas E. Gehley ’72 Kevin Giblin Gold’s Gym Hair Vogue Jeff and Laura Hales Heidelberg Pastry Shoppe Hilton McLean Tysons Corner House of Steep Hyatt Regency Crystal City Illusions Hair and Nail Studio of Shirlington Ireland’s Four Courts Ireland’s Four Provinces The Italian Store Joe’s Pizza & Pasta Mark D. Jones ’83 John Kaboff Dennis and Lynda Kay Knights of Columbus La Cote D’Or Cafe Lebanese Taverna Market Lawrence and Colleen Leber Thomas Liljenquist Living the Pie Life Mancini de Paris

Marble & Rye Terrance McGovern and Margaret Hogan-McGovern McLean Cleaners Metro 29 Diner Mexicali Blues Mom’s Pizza Restaurant Muggerz BBQ Nando’s Peri-Peri Norms Wine & Beer Deborah Holben O’Donnell ’73 ORIGINS O’Sullivan’s Irish Pub Outback Steakhouse Pacers Running Palette 22 Peter Chang Pete’s Pizza Matthew and Laura Pickford Pie-Tanza PING by Charlie Chiang’s The Portofino Restaurant Pucho Cigars Company LLC

Pupatella Neapolitan Pizzeria Ramparts Tavern and Grill Rocklands Real Barbeque Mark and Megan Rosia Royal Nails Rustico Ballston John and Jacqueline Ryan Dave Seager and Kristina Olsen Robert and Amy Seldin Mario and Amy Shaffer Matthew and Lynne Shank Paul F. Sheridan ’89 and Rachel Sheridan Signature Theatre Silver Diner Alan and Heidi Snyder Soccer Kicks Daniel and Monica Stabile Alberto Starace Samuel and Marian Starr Sterling Picture Framing Studio Salon and Spa Taqueria El Poblano Texas Jack’s Barbecue That Hair Place Tom & Deniz Hair Studio Trader Joe’s Barry Trotz and Kim Prokopchuk-Trotz Twins Ace Hardware Fairfax & Arlington Unlimited Plumbing & Piping, LLC Vienna Vintner Vineyard Vines Vita Surgical Group Whitlow’s on Wilson William Jeffrey’s Tavern Gregory and Tatiana Williams William Womack and Regina Warring Womack ’84

Joseph and Terri Lynn Wootten Yayla Bistro Eighmey Zeeck FRIENDS OF O’CONNELL

Anonymous Reed and Aileen Black Daniel and Suzanne Campbell Andrea Collins ’73 Carol Cornman and Brent Sperry Robert Lychak and Hazel O’Brien Lychak ’85 Michael Madden and Jacqueline Kenney Madden ’87 Eric Reusch and Lisa Stock-Reusch FACULTY SPONSORS

Anonymous Gary and Sue Andres Andrew and Denise Brown Ethan and Felicia Carr Jeffrey and Jennifer Conroy Sean and Alicia Cook Francis and Sylvia Cosgrove David and Regina DiLuigi Julia Ebron Chris and Mary Horrigan James Klote and Mary McNerney Klote ’84 Brian and Mary Lenaghan Christopher and Christine Lettieri Stephen and Betsy Lobaugh Douglas and Karen Natal GALA ADVERTISERS

Church of the Nativity El Pollo Rico Maginniss and Del Ninno Architects McLean Cleaners St. Veronica Catholic Church Gus and Mary Varfis

Thank you to our dedicated team of volunteers: GALA CHAIRS

Karin Brough Alicia Cook GALA VOLUNTEERS

Regina Allegra Paula Alvano Tim Aubry Paulette Awad Eileen Beam Diane Black Anne Brinkmann Marilyn Cacci Monessa Chase Kim Cherry Joanne Civiello Karen Clerici Tracy Conkin Anne Dannaher

Marjorie Dannenfelser Michael Dougherty Daniel Drummond Kenton Drury Lena Ehlers Maritoni Espejo Margo Eule Darlene Evans Lynda Flippin Katie Greenhalgh Adrienne Griffen Aida Habte Wendy Hall Daphine Hendricks Michelle Holland Anne Jones Timothy & Annette Keane Denise Kissinger

Mary Kremp Noelle Le Beth Lewarne Margaret Lewis Mary Beth Mackinnon Jackie Madden Pawnee Maiden Diane Major Barbara McGowan Bernadette Michaels Tammi Miller Gigi Montgomery Colleen Morche Miranda Moscatelli Amy O’Brien Linda O’Donovan Nancy Ohanian Sultana Pafford

Margaret Pirozzoli Pier Pons Eileen Prophett Marcia Richards Amy Seldin Amy Shaffer Teresa Shourie Heidi Snyder Christine Spann Monica Stabile Sara Sullivan Bob & Colleen Sweeney Theresa Termine Lisa Trombley Karin Viera Carolina Vigorita Elizabeth Vilaroman Lacey White

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29th Annual Connolly Golf Classic The Connolly Classic Memorial Golf Tournament was named in memory of Joseph Connolly, a beloved math teacher and coach at Bishop O’Connell High School who believed in the power of Catholic education to shape students’ lives. For 29 years all net proceeds from the Connolly Classic have supported tuition assistance programs to help students and families for whom an O’Connell education may be out of reach financially. The school funds $2.5 million in tuition assistance for one-third of our students out of the annual operational budget, helping students and families achieve the dream of a Catholic high school education at Bishop O’Connell.


Battlefield Ford/Stephan E. Fay ’71 and Ann Marie Morris Fay ’71 Jim Koons Automotive Companies/James Koons ’69 and Cecelia Zimmermann Koons ’69 Cushman & Wakefield HOLE SPONSORS

Gary and Sue Andres Rodney and Teresa Dade Daniel and Monica Stabile Agustin Vilche ’82 CAR HOLE IN ONE SPONSOR

CHALLENGE A KNIGHT! Think you’ve got what it takes to challenge a current DJO Knight? Players challenged a member of the varsity golf team to a par 3 hole – bragging rights and O’Connell swag was at stake!

Bill Page Honda/Bill Page Jr. ’90 GOLF CART SPONSORS

Cystic Fibrosis Foundation Walsh, Colucci, Lubeley & Walsh, P.C/Mark Goetzman ’77 and Martin Walsh ’62 FACULTY SPONSOR


FACTS Management Co. James Steele FUND A SCHOLAR

Don F. Bredice ’84 Jonathan D. Dwyer ’93 James M. Garvert ’95

And the winning teams are …

Christopher J. Melnick ’84 and Paola Quiroz ’87 Thomas H. Reilly ’84 and Klara Brown Reilly ’85 WOMEN’S TEAM

Kristin Berry

Michael Rickard ’83 Mark Roosma ’84 and Meaghan Roosma Tino Vilches ’82

Pat Ballard

Joseph E. Vorbach ’83 and Colleen Vorbach

Anne Doll

Raymond M. Williams ’91

Barbara Keaton

Save the Date May 7, 2018 for the 30th Annual Connolly Golf Classic. MEN’S TEAM

Mike Gleeson (chairman) Eddie Gleeson Mike Matthews Dave Riddle


Tino Vilches ’82 Ned Spearbeck ’82 Thomas Dunn ’85 Dave Cailler


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Prizes for top finishers – men’s and women’s teams, and the Syd Albrittain ’83 Memorial Alumni Cup is up for grabs for teams with three or more alumni. Current parent? Loyal alum? Everyone is welcome but space is limited. Online registration is open now! Sign up to play or make your sponsorship commitment today! Proceeds from the Joseph W. Connolly Golf Classic benefit need-based tuition programs at Bishop O’Connell High School, helping to keep Catholic education accessible for all families.

5K & Family Fun Run Congratulations to all the finishers of the second annual 5K & Family Fun Run, and thank you to our supporters and sponsors. We will be Better Together on April 14, 2018 as we partner with DC Road Runners to put on our third annual race. Proceeds will benefit expanded services at Bishop O’Connell for students with cognitive and intellectual disabilities. Out of town? Don’t like to run? You can still support our efforts by registering as a sponsor or an “armchair participant” and send your support remotely! Register to run, sponsor the event and learn more at


Battlefield Ford / Stephan E. Fay ’71 and AnnMarie Morris Fay ’71 DC Road Runners Jim Koons Automotive Companies/ James Koons ’69 and Cecelia Zimmermann Koons ’69 Walsh, Colucci, Lubeley & Walsh, P.C./ Mark Goetzman ’77 and Martin Walsh ’62 SUPPORTERS

Judith L. Cunningham ’84 Monte and Evelyn Ingram

Thomas and Janet Broderick

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Bishop O’Connell Endowed Funds, Scholarships & Awards We are grateful to the many generous donors who have established and continue to sustain scholarships and awards for Bishop O’Connell students. The Scholarship Committee selects qualified students per established criteria for each scholarship and award. Please contact the Advancement Office at 703-237-1447 if you would like to make a contribution to augment any our scholarships.

Endowed Funds Endowed funds are held and invested in the Foundation for the Catholic Diocese of Arlington.

JOHN AND CATHERINE HENRY ENDOWED SCHOLARSHIP Alec Henry established the John and Catherine Henry Endowed Scholarship in memory of his father, John and in honor of his mother, Catherine, who is a former O’Connell English teacher. The school awards this scholarship to a rising 9th grader who has demonstrated in middle school the combination of a serious approach to academics, a willingness to take on leadership responsibilities, and a genuine concern for others. 48

RADM Joseph Vorbach, USCG (ret) and his children Frances Vorbach Babashak ’82, Joseph E. Vorbach, III ’83, Emily Vorbach Gretz and Justin Vorbach ’87 established the Alice Gordon Vorbach Studio Arts Endowed Scholarship in memory of their beloved wife and mother, Alice Gordon Vorbach. Mrs. Vorbach was a dedicated religious educator and talented artist. The school awards the scholarship to a student who excels in the visual arts.

Other Scholarship Funds

THE W. SYDNEY ALBRITTAIN FACILITIES ENDOWED FUND In January 2016, O’Connell lost a beloved member of our alumni community. Syd’s great desire to make O’Connell a better place to teach and learn has been honored by his family, classmates, and friends by the establishment of the Warren Sydney Albrittain Facilities Endowment Fund in his memory. By making this endowed fund possible, the Albrittain family has created a permanent tribute to Syd and his vision of excellent facilities for the benefit of future generations of O’Connell students.


JOHN A. BALLARD SCHOLARSHIP  Victoria Gordon ’17 was awarded the Maureen Kane Kammerer Creative Writing Endowed Scholarship. Pictured is Victoria with Mrs. Maureen Kane Kammerer.

MAUREEN KANE KAMMERER CREATIVE WRITING ENDOWED SCHOLARSHIP The Kammerer family established the Maureen Kane Kammerer Creative Writing Endowed Scholarship in honor of their mother, Maureen, who is a former English teacher and was the moderator of the student literary magazine, Largesse at Bishop O’Connell from 1978 – 1985. Under Mrs. Kammerer’s stewardship, Largesse won an award from the Columbia Scholastic Press Association. The school awards the scholarship to a rising senior, junior or sophomore author of a creative writing piece judged to be the best entry of the academic year.

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Mr. and Mrs. J. Vernon Ballard established the Ballard Scholarship in 1993 in memory of their son, John Anthony Ballard ’70. The school awards the scholarship to a rising 9th grader who has demonstrated both exceptional academic achievement and outstanding leadership ability. BARRY EDWARD BREEN SCHOLARSHIP FUND FOR THE VISUAL AND PERFORMING ARTS The Board of Governors established the Barry Edward Breen Scholarship for the Visual and Performing Arts in tribute to Barry Edward Breen, President of Bishop O’Connell High School from 2004-2010, who is a passionate supporter of the visual and performing arts. The school awards the scholarship to two rising seniors (one boy/one girl) who demonstrate exceptional talent in the areas of visual or performing arts.

BISHOP O’CONNELL ALUMNI SCHOLARSHIP The Alumni Class of 1967 established the Bishop O’Connell Alumni Scholarship. Individual alumni gifts and class reunion giving sustains this scholarship. The school awards this scholarship to a student who exemplifies the qualities that distinguish an O’Connell Knight, which are courage, purity, honesty, diligence, loyalty, humility, charity and faith. BISHOP O’CONNELL SCHOLAR AWARD The school grants the Bishop O’Connell Scholar Award to rising 9th-grade students for outstanding academic achievement. Students scoring 99% or higher on the national composite of the High School Placement test are eligible for consideration. It is renewable for four years. JOSEPH W. CONNOLLY SCHOLARSHIP In 1997 the school established the Joseph W. Connolly Scholarship in memory of Joe Connolly, who worked at Bishop O’Connell for 31 years, from 1967 to 1997 as a teacher and coach. The school awards the Connolly Scholarship to a Catholic student who works to his/ her potential. DE LA SALLE AWARD FOR VOCAL PERFORMANCE The school awards the De La Salle vocal music scholarship to two rising 9th grade students for outstanding vocal performance. To be eligible for this award, students must plan to register for a choral class in their freshman year.

 Erika Trujillo ’20 was awarded the Fr. William Devine Military Scholarship. Pictured is Erika with Capt. Jamie Reeves and his wife, Dr. Sarah Bisch.

U.S. Navy Capt. James Reeves and his wife Dr. Sarah Bisch established the Rev. William Devine Military Scholarship to honor Father Devine, a former Navy chaplain who served on the front lines in Iraq from 2003 to 2005. Fr. Devine currently serves as pastor of St. Thomas Aquinas Catholic Church in Bridgewater, Mass. The school awards the scholarship to rising 9th grade student of an active duty member of the U.S. military who shows exemplary academic performance and leadership skills. It is renewable for four years as long as the student remains in good standing. HENRY HEISHMAN SCHOLARSHIP The Heishman family established the Henry Heishman Scholarship in memory of beloved husband and father, Henry Heishman. The scholarship recognizes a rising senior who demonstrates leadership skills and a willingness to contribute to the school community. This school awards the scholarship to a student who is humble, hardworking, respectful, and active in extracurricular activities.

DE LA SALLE AWARD FOR INSTRUMENTAL PERFORMANCE The school award the De La Salle instrumental music scholarship to two rising 9th grade students for outstanding instrumental performance. To be eligible for this award, students must plan to register for a band, orchestra, piano, or guitar class in their freshman year.  Sierra Moore ’17 was awarded the Henry Heishman Scholarship. Pictured is Sierra with Dr. Joseph Vorbach, Head of School.



The school awards the I.M.H. Service Award to a rising 9th grader who offers spontaneous, dependable and responsible service to others without seeking recognition or reward; whose character and example give witness to others of the gospel values seen in the works and teachings of Jesus, our Redeemer. Eligible students must attend an elementary school in the Diocese of Arlington and have a recommendation from their elementary school principal. KNIGHTS RECOGNITION SCHOLARSHIP The school awards the Knights Recognition Scholarship to a rising 9th grader for outstanding academic achievement. Students scoring 95% or higher on the national composite of the High School Placement test are eligible for consideration. It is renewable for four years. REV. MONSIGNOR JOHN MCMAHON SCHOLARSHIP Monsignor John J. McMahon was a priest and Catholic educator in the Diocese of Arlington. The Rev. Monsignor John McMahon Scholarship was established to recognize and pay tribute to the interest in Catholic education professed by Monsignor McMahon. The scholarship recipient shows an exemplary commitment to the Catholic faith, and a desire to attend Bishop O’Connell High School. It is the hope that the recipients will be encouraged to return similar benefactions to others as they realize the material and spiritual rewards that a Catholic education can and will bring to their lives.

FALL 2017 | THE KNIGHTS’ PAGES | 6oth Anniversary Edition



I had a great experience at DJO! I was well prepared for college and beyond. Graduate from the class of ’89

MONSIGNOR JAMES W. MCMURTRIE SCHOLARSHIP The McMurtrie family established the Monsignor James W. McMurtrie Scholarship in memory of their brother, Monsignor James W. McMurtrie, who was a priest in the Diocese of Arlington, principal of Bishop O’Connell High School from 1972-1977, and chairman of the Board of Governors from 1986-2002. The school awards the scholarship to a Catholic student from the Diocese of Arlington. ROBERT J. AND ELIZABETH K. MURPHY FAMILY SCHOLARSHIPS Robert J. Murphy Jr. ’67 and his family established a scholarship in memory of their mother, Mrs. Elizabeth K. Murphy, who was a beloved math teacher at O’Connell. The school awards the scholarship to students who excel in Math and Community Service. JEANINE REING MUSGROVE SCHOLARSHIP

SCHAFFNER FAMILY SCHOLARSHIP Anne Schaffner and her children, Rachel Schaffner ’00 and Joseph M. Schaffner ’05 established the Schaffner Family Scholarship in memory of their beloved husband and father, Joseph G. Schaffner. The school awards the scholarship to a rising 9th grader who demonstrates keen interest and aptitude in math and science. COLONEL C.A. SEOANE AWARD In 1965, a bequest from the estate of Colonel C.A. Seoane established the Colonel C.A. Seoane Award. Students are eligible to receive monetary awards in an essay writing contest with the prompt “Why I Like Being an American Citizen.” “SPIRIT OF O’CONNELL” AWARD The “Spirit of O’Connell” Award honors the memory of Bishop O’Connell’s beloved football coach, Steve Trimble, who passed into eternal life in 2011. This award recognizes a rising senior who exemplifies the character qualities of Coach Trimble: personal humility, empathy, agility, responsibility and tenacity (H.E.A.R.T). Coach Trimble embodied H.E.A.R.T throughout his life as a college and pro football player, teacher, coach, mentor and father to four O’Connell alumni. His motto was “Make Something Happen.”

CINDY WALLS SCHOLARSHIP An anonymous donor established the Cindy Walls Scholarship in honor of Bishop O’Connell cross country coach, Cindy Walls. This scholarship is awarded to a member of the boys or girls cross country team who possesses the range of qualities which Coach Walls affirms through her coaching philosophy. The recipient is a runner dedicated to the pursuit of excellence in the classroom and athletic competition, who consistently supports their teammates and coaches, honorably represents Bishop O’Connell, looks for ways to serve the community, and is a willing, able, and capable leader.

Donations for non-endowed scholarship funds may be made by mailing a check to the school (write the name of the scholarship on the check memo line) or by credit card on our secure online donation page at (choose Knight Fund and indicate the name of the scholarship in the Additional Comments box).

The Reing and Musgrove families established the Jeanine Reing Musgrove Scholarship in 2013 in memory of former O’Connell teacher and alumna, Jeanine Reing Musgrove ’92. O’DONNELL FAMILY “MAKING A DIFFERENCE” AWARD The school established the O’Donnell Family “Making a Difference Award in honor of the O’Donnell family. Maura O’Donnell and her siblings inspired the creation of Superdance to raise money to find a cure for Cystic Fibrosis. This school awards this scholarship to a rising 9th grader who has made a difference in their community by going above and beyond to help those in need. 50

 Patty Maye Ohanion ’17 was awarded the “Spirit of O’Connell” Award. Pictured are Patty Maye with T.J. Fitzpatrick and Gretchen Trimble

6oth Anniversary Edition | THE KNIGHTS’ PAGES | FALL 2017

Fall 2017 THE KNIGHTS’ PAGES BISHOP O’CONNELL HIGH SCHOOL 6600 Little Falls Road Arlington, VA 22213 703-237-1400 ADMINISTRATION Joseph E. Vorbach III, PhD ’83 Head of School

2016-2017 BOARD OF GOVERNORS Front row (l to r): Sara Naill Sullivan ’89, Sister Mary Sue Carwile ’73, Jennifer Bigelow

(Superintendent of Catholic Schools), Felicia Carr (Secretary), John Brough ‘82 (Chair), Dede O’Donnell ‘73, Sheila Leverone ’82, Rev. Gregory Thompson (Chaplain). Back row (l to r): Dr. Matt Shank, Samuel Starr (Vice Chair), Doug Gehley ’72, Dr. Joseph Vorbach ’83 (Head of School), Rev. Frederick Edlefsen, Rev. James Searby, Jason Baltimore, Murl Altoft (Chief Financial Officer), William Arendt, Carl Patton (Assistant Head of School). Not pictured: Carl Anderson ’99, Colleen Leber, and Paul Sheridan ’89.

NEW! • NEW! • NEW!

Check out some of our community’s alumni or parent owned/operated businesses and make some connections via the online O’Connell Business Directory! Patronize businesses with a strong connection to DJO and support those within our network. Show your pride in being a DJO Knight by spending your dollars at alumni or parent-owned businesses. Want to register your business? It’s fast, easy and free. Visit the alumni page for more details.

Rev. Gregory Thompson Chaplain Sister Catherine Hill, I.H.M. ’66 Dean of Academics Meghan Lonergan Dean of Mission Erin O’Malley Dean of Student Services ADVANCEMENT Kim Aubry Director of Advancement 703-237-1447 Laura Friel Constituent Relations 703-237-1446 Hannah Martenson Administrative Assistant 703-241-4281 Bailey Roberts Advancement Services 703-237-1445


Jennifer Reamer Knight Fund 703-237-1437


Carl Patton Assistant Head of School and Director of Curriculum and Instruction

Feb. 3, 2018

Apr. 26-29



Feb. 24-25

May 5



Apr. 14

May 7



COMMUNICATIONS Mary Jane Spurlock Director of Communications 703-237-1425 The Knights’ Pages is designed by Carmel Steindam Graphic Design and is printed by Day & Night Printing, Inc. FALL 2017 | THE KNIGHTS’ PAGES | 6oth Anniversary Edition



BISHOP O’CONNELL HIGH SCHOOL 6600 Little Falls Road Arlington, VA 22213


1 in 3 students receives financial assistance

Be1part of our$2.5 Knight in 3 million students tradition. Give today. awarded in need- & merit-based scholarships

receives financial assistance


$1,500 gap

$2.5 million

1 in 3 students

between the tuition charged and the full cost of an O’Connell education

awarded in need- & merit-based scholarships

receives financial assistance

The Knight Fund plays an essential role in ensuring that O’Connell continues the rich tradition of faith-based academic excellence, equipping young adults to make a positive difference in the world. Your gift this year will be put to use right away, supporting:


$1,500 gap Retreats and spiritual development

$2.5 Academic offerings million

awarded inprograms  Extracurricular

 Scholarships




between the tuition charged and financial assistance and the full cost of an  Hiring and O’Connell education retaining the best teachers

need- & merit-based  Technology in the classroom scholarships



On behalf of all the students, faculty and staff, thank you for your support of Bishop O’Connell High School!

Knights' Pages - Fall 2017  

Bishop O'Connell High School's magazine, including the Annual Report of Giving.

Knights' Pages - Fall 2017  

Bishop O'Connell High School's magazine, including the Annual Report of Giving.