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Growing Home

St Joe’s Wetlands and Nature Boardwalk Opened September 2017

Mission St Joseph High School strives to be the premier college preparatory school in Southern Connecticut. St Joes provides a learning environment that embraces the Gospel values of the Roman Catholic faith and promotes a commitment to family and community. St Joseph High School prepares our young women and young men to realize their potential, helps them to excel in higher education, and provides a foundation to guide them throughout their lives.

Contents 2

Creating Fitness for Life


Sharing the Adventure


Walking the Walk


Finding Your Passion at St Joes


Expanding the Sciences


The Proof is in the People


The Value of Faith


Hall of Fame Inductees


Maroon & Gold Gala and Ladies Luncheon


Alumni News & Remembrance

There’s No Place Like Home... A Letter from SJ Cadet, Caitlin Brown ’18 Head of School William Fitzgerald, MDiv, MEd, PhD Principal James Keane, MDiv, MEd, PhD Assistant Principal for Curriculum & Instruction Nancy DiBuono, MAT Assistant Principal for Athletics Kevin Butler, MA, RAA Director of Guidance Karrie Sullivan, MEd Dean of Students Martin Dempsey ’98, MA Director of Marketing & Enrollment Management Jessica Morales, MBA Director of Advancement & Alumni Affairs Michele Gomez Krasznai ’89, CFRE Communications Maria Martinez, MA Photography Vic Eng, SJ Faculty Owen Bonaventura ’16

For all of us, no matter our year, St Joseph High School has become a home away from home. St Joes has been a place of learning, laughter, and love. When I walked through the front doors freshman year, I had no idea that I would still feel the same excitement and joy walking through those same doors every day for the next four years. During my time here, SJ has grown tremendously, just like its students. We have been lucky enough to witness great change and expansion to our campus. What was once the old Mary Kenney Library became the Student Commons, where you will always find students hanging out during study or before school. With the use of funds raised by our student-run Walkathon, the Commons was developed even more into a place for all to sit comfortably and either talk with friends, meet with clubs, or get homework done. Then came the creation of a new upper field turf where students, family members, and alumni love to watch football games and other sporting events. It has become a central location for great bonding between generations. And just this year, the new Health & Wellness Center was added, and man, is it great!!

to get myself involved. I decided to join some clubs that were interesting to me then, and that now mean the world to me. I joined Drama Club, Student Ambassadors, Student Council, helped to found RAAAFT Club (which supports victims of abuse), and volunteered with Special Olympics. I also decided to run Cross Country, and even though I was not the best runner, I had a great coach and some truly amazing friends who helped me grow as a person in life and in the sport. As the years have passed, I have become more confident and acquired true leadership skills that will stay with me for the rest of my life. As a senior, I am now President of Drama and RAAAFT Club, Publicity Secretary for the Student Ambassadors, and President of the Senior Class. I also co-chaired SJ’s Fashion Show, which raised more than $10,000 for our Senior Class Gift. St Joseph High School has forever been embedded in my heart, and in my soul, as a place I can call home. I know that in 10, 20, or even 50 years, when I walk through the front doors, I will always be overwhelmed with feelings and memories of love, laughter, learning, and community. Just this morning, I had that same thought as I walked through the front doors with both gratitude and joy: I am meant to be here. I am home.

The physical growth at St Joes has been completely intertwined with my own physical, emotional, and educational growth. This has been possible because of the countless opportunities that I have had to jump in With Thanks, and be my best. When I came here, I decided the best way to meet people and to know this community was

Caitlin Brown ’18


ecently, the Office of Advancement and Alumni Affairs moved from the little white house at the front of campus to the little brown house at the front of campus. It was a move that came at the perfect time as we continue to grow not just within our physical space, but within our community as well.

If you paid us a visit right now, you would see a flurry of activity. The St Joseph Fund Spring Appeal has hit mailboxes, and most of our spring events including the Hall of Fame, Feast Day, and Golf Tournament, are on track to be better this year than ever. Reunions for the ’80s decade and the 50th reunion for the Class of 1968 are in the works. We’ve also begun talks with the Class of ’18 leadership about becoming alumni soon and what exactly does that mean for them.

After all this, we stop for a moment, take a deep breath, and take a look at our school from our new view. Why do we choose to do so much? That’s easy. It’s always the same answer.

Boardwalk, they weren’t built without Mission behind them. See for yourself what I mean. From Caitlin’s words above to the articles inside this Spring Communiqué - see how we are all coming together as one family, for our students.

It’s all for our students. All of our efforts—the Board of Directors, the dozens and dozens of volunteers, our alumni who show up in force when called upon, our faculty and staff, our parents—we all work together for the same reason: our students. The new Health & Wellness Center, the new

Michele Krasznai ’89, CFRE Director of Advancement & Alumni Affairs 1


Creating Fitness for Life: Training the Mind, Body, and Soul by Alisha Thresher, Director of Health & Wellness


e can work out together before class, and after school. Who would go off to a gym by themselves when we have such a magnificent facility right here?” Those were the words of Student Council President, Greg Jazwinski, on the official opening of St Joe’s Health & Wellness Center. On January 16, the new 4,500 square foot facility officially opened for student usage during the school day. In addition to offering students a great place to exercise during their study hall periods, the Health & Wellness Center is soon to become a place where students can simply be themselves—feeling comfortable and safe as they aim toward a lifetime goal of fitness and well-being. There is much more to the Health & Wellness Center than treadmills and weights. It is a place where students strive to incorporate the spirit, mind, and body into one entity. During the rush of the day, it is easy to forget that our physical well-being is as important as our intellectual well-being. By structuring the day into a more open-campus feel, the Health & Wellness Center allows students to learn the important life skill of developing healthy habits to take care of their bodies. Our goal is for students to learn how to properly navigate a fitness center, create a basic fitness routine for themselves, and learn how proper nutrition can drastically change their lives. We strive to ensure that all students understand the incredible feats their bodies are capable of accomplishing. The center is not just for students, but for faculty as well. As adults, our students look to us as examples in more than just the respected academic fields we teach in. If St Joes wants our students to take care of themselves and incorporate exercise into their daily routine, we must be willing to do so as well. As the faculty, staff, and coaches all begin to work on their own spirits, minds, and bodies, they will serve as positive role models for each of our students. The Health & Wellness Center is here for all students—regardless if they are on an athletic team or not. We hope it will be seen and known as a place of strength and happiness for each and everyone one who walks through its doors.


What sets St Joes apart is its ability to cater to the mind, body, and soul of the individual student. The Health & Wellness Center is the perfect extension of that mission. Through its extensive health education and state-of-the-art exercise equipment, it effectively emphasizes the importance of physical fitness along with intellectual learning. ~ Joe Singh ’18



Walking the Walk: Nature Ties All Subjects Together by Dr Daniel Walsh, Science Teacher


The boardwalk is an excellent way to learn and have first-hand experience of what we talk about in the classroom, in the real world. Students can explore and appreciate the inner workings of God’s creation: the ecosystem. ~ Aaron Kirby ’19


he wetland boardwalk and woodlands trail provide our students opportunities to explore and discover, stimulate the senses, wonder at the beauty of nature, and in doing so, restore balance to their lives. The boardwalk accesses an inland wetland Red Maple swamp, an ecosystem rarely found on school or even college campuses, which was previously inaccessible to our students. It’s all about experiential learning. The science student observes the diversity of life and how it changes from one area to the next in relation to environmental cues. And the interconnectedness of all lifeforms becomes apparent as they compete, prey upon, or form mutualistic bonds with each other. But there is more than science for students to experience. They can sense the rich mixture of colors, textures, sounds, and smells of a natural palette. They can experience the inspiration for Thoreau’s great works and Muir’s environmental movement. And if they observe closely, they may detect subtle clues to the history of land use from “taming” it to restoring and conserving it. Even the spiraled leaf arrangement of some plants reveals the mathematics of the Fibonacci sequence and the golden ratio.

social media, students can relax and see the face of God’s creation and contemplate where they fit in and what path they should take. Nature ties all subjects together. My graduate advisor spent his summers as a naturalist in Grand Teton National Park. On one occasion, when relatives from San Diego who had spent a week with him were preparing to leave, one of them thanked him and added that unfortunately it was time to return to the real world. He replied, “This is the real world”. May the new boardwalk and trail system be a center for experiential learning and a respite for renewal.

And in this natural area, removed from the crowded hallways, rigorous classes, and hum of 3


Meet Caitlin Gage ’19

Advocate and President of St Joe’s STEM Club


aitlin Gage is a Junior Cadet who transfered to St Joes from Easton Country Day School in her sophomore year. Since her arrival at St Joes, she has been making a phenomenal impression on her fellow students and faculty! In 2016, Caitlin approached the administration in hopes of starting a STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) Club at the school. She happened to come upon two faculty members, Mr Mirable and Mr Bowman, who agreed to help out. In 2017, the STEM Club officially began. “I’ve always had a passion for the sciences,” said Caitlin, “and I know that someday I will end up in a STEM related career. I also know, as does the faculty at St Joes, that STEM careers are going to be our future.” Thus far, Caitlin’s goal for the STEM Club is two-fold: experiential and educational. One meeting a month will be dedicated to fun, engaging STEM projects—activities that help members find unique ways to solve a variety of problems. The other monthly meeting will feature a guest speaker—an alumni or community member—who currently works in STEM fields and is willing to share their career knowledge. “What better way to learn how STEM fields are changing the world than to learn it from the people who are actually doing it?”

The STEM Club Welcomed Guest Speaker, Fred Danbeck (center) on Feb 26, 2018. Mr Danbeck is the Vice President and Chief Information Officer for FOJP and spoke on Cyber-Security.

In the future, Caitlin plans to add a community outreach component that will involve local elementary schools. She hopes to spark an interest in STEM and foster future scientists. The club invites alumni, parents, relatives, and friends who are in STEM fields to volunteer their time—please reach out to Caitlin,, if you’re interested!

Building Confidence While Building Drones Aeronautical Engineering Course Takes Off!


ffering a unique and groundbreaking approach to STEM education, St Joseph High School is proud to partner with Milestone C to bring a new Aeronautical Engineering program to our students. With a mission to shape future STEM leaders, Milestone C is a hands-on engineering and aviation experience for high school students—most recently in the Shelton/Trumbull area. This cutting edge program provides students with hands-on experience using real-world simulations, state of the art flight simulators, and culminating with the students building and flying their own drones. The course was offered for the first time this Winter and there was no shortage of interest. The application process was highly competitive as we received more than 50 applications for 25 available spots in the course. On Saturday, May 26, we will host a “family day” at St Joes, where the students will unveil and fly their drones around our campus. We can’t wait to see their hard work in action! Due to such high interest and enthusiastic engagement (Milestone C directors actually had to



Q&A with Caitlin!

Robotics Club Returns to St Joes!

Q: When did your passion for Science begin? A: As a small child! As a toddler, I would walk around our backyard

turning over rocks constantly asking, “What is this?”. I was curious about insects, spiders, frogs, and different kinds of plants and flowers. If it was living, I wanted to know all about it. As I grew up, I became particularly interested in the physiology and anatomy of smaller animals. I was even caught trying to dissect a small field mouse who fell prey to one of the barn cats. The early on curiosity about biology has definitely followed me through my high school years.

Q: What do you want to major in at college? A: If I had to choose right now, I would major in Biology with a pre-med focus. That may change in the next year year due to my exposure to the different STEM related fields I am being introduced to through the Club.

Q: What has been your favorite thing about the STEM Club so far? A: All the aspects of the Club are enjoyable! I’ve met new friends, reached out to local schools to assist in creating their own STEM Clubs, and conducted experiments. Still, my favorite part is learning from the guest speakers. I was not aware of how many different STEM fields existed and how many more new fields will be created. The more research I conduct, the more I realize how much more I need to explore before deciding on my own career choice.

This Winter and Spring, St Joe’s Robotics Club welcomed any and all students (with any range of experience) to join the Robotics Club. Students have already begun their introduction to robotics using Lego Mindstorm Kits. The kits allow a variety of robotic projects to be built and controlled by the students with minimal to moderate experience. On the very first day, students set aside the instructions and went straight to work. Many figured out how to connect the robots to an app on their cellphones before the first session was even over! The goal of the club is to get all participants familiar with programming various robotic designs, and prepare them for more complex designs, and competition. Currently, the club has divided itself into two groups - upperclassmen and underclassmen—that will compete their robots against each other in a series of challeneges ranging from moving on its own to following a specific color line to picking up a ball and returning it to its original location.

make their courses even more challenging for our Cadets), we will assuredly offer the program again in the near future, as well as an additional advanced course for students who wish to continue the program. In the future, St Joseph High School also plans to offer a course for middle school students during the summer. This may happen as early as 2018! More information will soon be available on our website.

About Milestone C Instructors:

Milestone C instructors and staff have over 75 years of collective experience in engineering, program management, military aviation, molecular science, and clinical research. They have participated in development of presidential aircraft; served as lead engineers and program managers at Fortune 500 corporations; flown combat missions in Iraq and Afghanistan as military pilots; delivered leadership and team-building training to corporate giants; led cancer research programs on the global stage; developed commercial aerospace test and overhaul equipment; and earned degrees from the world’s leading educational institutes. For more information, you may visit 5


The Value of Faith: A New Vision for Campus Ministry


by Jordan Smith, Director of Campus Ministry

ampus Ministry encourages us to see God in all things. As members of a Catholic Community, we are called to carry out acts of fellowship and service, which are at the very heart of a St Joseph High School education.

Since my arrival in the fall, I have been impressed by the generosity of our community and the spirit that thrives among students and faculty alike. There is a tremendous energy in our building and great untapped potential yet to be uncovered. As a college student, I was hired as a Campus Ministry intern in a Catholic high school. In this capacity I helped plan retreats and attended each one of them. On my first retreat, I encountered a student who approached me wanting to talk. For the next hour, we shared and listened to each other with great interest and care. Our conversation was personal and it was real. While there are important conversations to be had in the classroom, moments like this affirm our Catholic identity and community. Campus Ministry taught me that sharing the stories of our faith journey matters, and I intend to guide us in the same journey here at St Joes. I want to challenge our students to reach outside of their comfort zone to care for neighbors in our communities, our nation, and even our world. From service projects with Habitat for Humanity to weekends in a local soup kitchen, opportunities exist right in our own backyard. Just recently, on a trip to the Bridgeport Rescue Mission, several students had the opportunity to interact with the residents of a rehabilitation program. Seeing those who benefited from our sandwich donation was both eye opening and formative in the development of our students as servant leaders. I have always been struck by the willingness of high school students to give back, and am proud to say that our students here understand the value of true service to others. I am committed to supporting our students wherever they are on their faith journeys and am prepared to engage and inform them in moments of spiritual enrichment. I am confident that Campus Ministry will lead them in matters both intellectual and spiritual; preparing them to be men and women for others for the rest of their lives.


Service is the act of helping or doing work for someone in need. My brother and I serve to enrich the lives of others and help better our own. St Joes offers many service opportunities including, just recently, the chance to make sandwiches for the Bridgeport Rescue Mission. Part of the reason we came to St Joes was because of the great opportunity for service. We are more than glad we did! ~ Jaden ’18 and Mia ’20 Ramadei



Maroon & Gold Gala Unveils New Endowment for St Joes by Dawn Handwerker, Assistant Director of Advancement, Special Events and Donor Relations


eld on Saturday, November 18 at The Waterview, St Joseph High School’s Maroon & Gold Gala was a roaring success! We couldn’t be more grateful for the entire SJ community who helped us raise more than $135,000 for the SJ Scholarship Fund. St Joes students are so blessed to have a community that cares so much. Your support and generosity makes all the difference for students who want to attend our school but need the financial assistance to get here. In addition to the festivities, this year we had a special dedication in memory of Robert O’Keefe, for all he and his family have done for Catholic education—especially their support of St Joseph High School. After the dedication, his son, Joe O’Keefe ’82, spoke on behalf of the family and closed by announcing the Robert & Maureen O’Keefe Scholarship, an endowed scholarship to St Joseph High School of $250,000. This night could not happen without our major sponsors. We are so grateful for the support of O’Keefe Controls, Lorraine & Chris Wilson P ’08, ’10, ’14, B&G Piping Company, Inc, and the Mustard Seed Foundation. We would also like to thank our volunteers - most especially Honorary Chairs Andrea and Jonathan Maldon ’89 P ’19 as well as our Auction co-chairs Erin Candler P ’12, ’16 and Lori D’Amico P ’18, ’20, and the rest of the Gala committee volunteers who made the night a huge success! Congratulations to Michael Thomas ’82, who was the winner of the $15,000 Tuition Raffle! Michael generously donated his winnings back to a family attending St Joes. Make sure you get your tickets next year...maybe you will be the winner!

Save the Date! Next year’s Maroon & Gold Gala will be held on Saturday, November 17, 2018 at the Waterview in Monroe!

Family, Friends, Food, and Fun — Ladies Luncheon 2018


fter a huge snowstorm, everyone was looking to celebrate spring—and that’s just what we did at the Past, Present and Future Ladies Luncheon held on Sunday, March 11, at Brooklawn Country Club. The day began with shopping and Cadetinis...where many lovely items were purchased from our twenty vendors. Shopping and socializing with friends was a great way to kick-off the week! After a delicious lunch, guest speaker, Julie Coyne, Founder and Executive Director of Education and Hope, shared with all those present the ways in which she lives the Gospel everyday in the incredible community she has created and supports in Guatemala through her Foundation. Julie helped all those present to see how love can truly make a difference in someone’s life. Her experiences and the way she lives are exactly what we try to share with our Cadets as they travel the globe on the Francis Xavier Immersion Trips. Many thanks to Julie for showing us all how we can live out the Gospel in the most genuine way. Ladies Luncheon is a wonderful annual event that celebrates the women of St Joes…past, present and future…and the amazing women that surround our SJ Community. Thanks to Beth Foldesi P ’16, ’19, and her committee for planning this event and to our many Centerpiece Sponsors, Faculty Sponsors, and Donors. Your continued support means so much to our students. We hope you can join us next year!


GROWING MINDS EVERY DAY “Sharing the Adventure” In GOOD TO GREAT, Jim Collins claims that effective leadership is always particular to the situation: the right person in the right place. With the STEM club, it’s been Caitlin Gage ’19. The aerodynamic engineering program’s spark is Mr Dempsey. Dr Keane gets global; Mrs Anderson goes global. My opinion: St Joes’ finance committee should be running all the schools. Likewise, Mrs Sorrentino should be in charge of freshmen classes everywhere. It is all about engineering an environment wherein students are encouraged to find their voice. As this Communiqué reveals, St Joseph High School is a composition of unique talent and timely leadership. My talent? I’m good at taking the compliments. “Lovely boardwalk.” Thanks. “Career Day was incredible.” Glad you enjoyed it. “Wow! Three state titles in one season.” I coached ’em good. “That fall play was the cleverest!” Cheers. “The scholarship made all the difference.” Glad to help. “Thanks for getting Joey or Josey into the University of Our Dreams.” Love taking credit for that one. But the reality is that every program, every project’s success depends upon the cooperation of the whole. St Joes has changed me, from task oriented—the Mona Lisa wasn’t painted by a committee—to trusting in people and process. This fall, given our new autonomy, teachers met with administrators to re-write the terms and conditions of employment at St Joes. The process moved us away from an institutional, negotiated employee-employer relationship toward a shared, mission-centered vision of what’s best for St Joes. We go best when we go together. Our maintenance crew, the board of directors, the faculty, the students, the administrative staff, support services, the alumni and parents, the many volunteers and donors—all are engaged in making the whole so much more than the parts. Growing great into greater is a shared adventure. I hope the alumni read Caitlin Brown’s opening letter. Her experience didn’t come out of the blue. What is to come for St Joes very much depends on what has been. Our faith, our values, our community is reliant upon our inter-generational network of friends and family. St Joes is essentially a faith experience lived out among friends. St Joes is us. We are blessed. Godspeed,

William J Fitzgerald, MDiv, MEd, PhD 8


Pictured Left to Right: Dr Daniel Walsh, Science Department Chair, 33 years at St Joes Betsy Sorrentino, World Literature and Composition, 24 years at St Joes Kathleen Cardillo, Theatre & English Literature, 13 years at St Joes Olga Rivera, World Language, 18 years at St Joes Allen Massiah, Mathematics, 2 years at St Joes 9


Finding Your Passion at St Joes: Career Readiness Day By Michele Gomez Krasznai ’89, Director of Advancement & Alumni Affairs


areer Readiness Day is an integral part of the junior and senior curriculum that aims at developing career awareness, professional networking skills, and mature college decision making.

On October 18, 2017 St Joseph High School held its first Career Readiness Day, for all Junior and Senior students. The goal is to encourage Cadets to explore their future career interests by meeting business professionals in the fields they intend to pursue. Prior to the day, Donna Prutting, Career Coach and SJ parent, presented a Career Readiness Day Preparation to the students. Mrs Prutting gave a talk on business etiquette that included business attire, interviewing skills, the importance of a strong on-line presence, and networking. The day itself opened with keynote speaker, Dr Donald R Gibson, Vice Provost for Academic Affairs at Fairfield University, who spoke to our students about the importance of leadership, finding your voice, and discovering the keys to success in yourself. Business professionals representing a multitude of public and private industries answered questions, offered advice, and shared networking tips to students in four breakout sessions and a round-table lunch. The day closed with keynote, Kevin McSpirit, who spoke on faith, life skills, and character development. A very special thank you to John Corraro ’11, Alumni Association President, for his help organizing the day and coordinating alumni speakers to join us. A full list of those who spoke can be viewed on the SJHS website: Career Readiness Day 2018 will be held in the Fall. Business professionals have the option to join the students for all or part of the day. The goal is to educate Juniors and Seniors about a chosen field. Students are provided speaker biographies ahead of time in order to deepen their area of interest. Networking is key and students can setup shadow opportunities in their fields. Professionals interested in attending our next Career Readiness Day, please email Sasha Russell, or visit

“Real generosity to the future lies in giving all to the present.” ~ A Camus


Career Day allowed me to meet a surgeon, Dr Martin. After meeting him, and due to the fact that I want to become a surgeon myself, I reached out to him and was able to shadow him! This turned out to be one of the most enlightening experiences of my life. ~ Lavanya Sambaraju ’18



The Proof is in the People - Welcoming the VIPs of 2022 By Jessica Costa, Associate Director of Admissions


n December 15, 2017, our admissions team made an early morning trip to the Shelton Post Office to deliver acceptance packages to our Class of 2022.

We are happy to welcome the Class of 2022 from the following middle schools:

Sparkling gold folders and a “VIP” pass were addressed to students in 30 towns in Fairfield, New Haven and Hartford Counties who attend 72 different schools across the state, and even one from New Jersey. This year’s theme was inspired by the applicants: a professional ballerina, 1st and 3rd place winners of state-wide spelling bees, New England’s Pop Warner #1 Ranked Scholar, a female Mixed Martial Arts title champion, two winners of the Invention Convention, a Beardsley Zoo Historian, and those accomplishments are just the beginning! This spring, 7th grade students beginning their high school search will inevitably ask, “What makes St Joes special?” My answer begins with the students enrolled in the Class of 2022 and the faculty, coaches, staff, and upperclassman eager to welcome them on their first day. When it comes to St Joes, the proof is in the people. Students are taught by talented faculty who effectively challenge and support them while encouraging their individual talents. Students are free to design a course list reflective of their strengths, allowing them to work toward honors placement class by class, year to year. The fear of failure is purposefully removed from these important four years of academic discovery. Beyond academic excellence, accomplished coaches, skilled arts and music directors and humanitarian leaders introduce students to new possibilities. At St Joes, it is not unusual for a baseball player to be cast as the lead in our musical, or for an award-winning painter to participate in the stock market club. Students are encouraged to try new things and are celebrated by their peers without the pressure to conform to a singular definition of themselves. The celebrated success of our family of Cadets is not an accident. Innovation in conjunction with sustainability and tradition inform everything from the curriculum to facilities to even student-run clubs. The unique value of a St Joseph High School education combines the best of academic, altruistic, athletic, and social development in a supportive, faith-based environment. We are more than just a school; we are an extraordinary community.


After attending the first open house in 7th grade, I instantly felt like I was home. I knew that I would have to work hard but the school made the admissions process easy and so welcoming! I look forward to all that St Joes has to offer and to joining my second family. It’s just the beginning for the Class of 2022! ~ Vincent Pavese ’22 St Rose of Lima School, Newtown, CT

Achievement First Amity Middle School All Saints Catholic School Assumption Catholic School Bailey Middle School Black Rock Middle School Blackham Middle School Christian Heritage School Derby Middle School East Shore Middle School Engineering and Science University Magnet School Fairfield Woods Middle School Fairfield Country Day School Flood Middle School Great Oak Middle School Greenwich Catholic School Harborside Middle School Helen Keller Middle School Hillcrest Middle School Holy Trinity Catholic Academy Hopkins School Jockey Hollow Middle School Roger Ludlowe Middle School Madison Middle School Nathan Hale Middle School New Beginnings Family Academy Newtown Middle School Our Lady of Fatima School Park City Preparatory School Rogers International Middle School Seymour Middle School Shelton Intermediate School St Aloysius School St Andrew Academy St Ann Academy St Augustine Academy St Bernadette Catholic School St Catherine of Siena School St Helena School, NJ St James School St Mark School St Martin de Porres Academy St Mary School, Milford St Rose of Lima School St Thomas Aquinas Catholic School Turn of River Middle School West Rocks Middle School West Shore Middle School Wooster Middle School



SJ Athletics Hall of Fame Inductees Ceremony to be held at St Joes on April 22, 2018 ATHLETES

Mr Doremus Bennerman Class of 1990

During his 4-year basketball career, Mr Bennerman scored 1,318 points, ranking 6th on the school’s all-time score list. He currently holds the 3rd place record on the school’s all-time steals list with 265, and is ranked 5th with all-time assists. He was a significant contributor for the 1987-88 Championship Basketball team. He was selected to the ’89-’90 All-State team, All-League team, All-Area team, and a McDonalds All-American Nominee. He went on to have an illustrious basketball career at Siena College, and also played professionally in Europe.

Ms Janet MisencikMonroe Class of 1980

The 1980 St Joes Female Athlete of the Year, Mrs Misencik-Monroe is a three-sport standout, earning All-MBIAC awards in volleyball, basketball, and softball. She was the first female to score over 1,000 points, and was All-MBIAC team three of her four years. She also earned the title of MBIAC MVP. In addition to league honors, she was All-State honors two years and a NHSACA Honorable Mention. She continued her basketball career at Yale University.

Mr Stephen Neugebauer Class of 1998

Ms Jill Lynne (Plukas) Class of 1982

Ms Lynne was a four-year letter winner and standout in the co-ed tennis squad. She was a fourtime State Singles Champion and was the first person in state history to attain such a feat. She was also a member of the ’81 and ’82 Class S Girls Tennis Championship team. She earned co-ed All-MBIAC honors three of her four years of competition. She was awarded a tennis scholarship to play at the University of Jacksonville. 12

Mr Neugebauer was a two-sport athlete, lettering in football and indoor track. In football, he was selected to multiple All-State and All-FCIAC teams and to the New Haven Register All-State team, 1st Team Class S AllState and All-FCIAC. He held the school record for career tackles at 325 until 2007. He earned accolades for indoor track: earning 1st Team AllFCIAC team and a spot on both 1st Team AllState and All-FCIAC teams. He was also a part of the Sprint Medley Relay that held the Class S title and record in the event. He went on to letter in football and track at Villanova University. He is a member of the St Joes football staff.

Ms Jen Russell Class of 2007

Ms Russell lettered in both volleyball and softball. She posted a 61-11 career pitching record. She posted a record 45-3 during the 2006 and 2007 State Championship seasons, with an ERA of 0.07 in 2007. Additionally, she was team captain of a team that won the FCIAC Championship and a second straight State Championship. She earned All-FCIAC and All-State honors and was named to the New Haven Register All-Area team and was the CT Post MVP. She was the MVP in 2006 and 2007 and FCIAC Tournament MVP in 2007. She continued her softball career at Sacred Heart University.

Ms Adriana Spears Class of 1999

Ms Spears, the 1999 SJ Female Athlete of the Year, was a four-year, two-sport athlete, lettering in basketball and volleyball. She was named the 1999 Connecticut Gatorade Player of the Year, a USA Today Honorable Mention All-American, the New Haven Register All-Area team, and the CT Post Super 15. She was selected to the All-State and All-FCIAC teams twice. She had similar success in volleyball, being named MVP of the 1997 State Championship team. She was All-FCIAC and All-State. She continued her basketball career at Boston College.

A CELEBRATION OF CHAMPIONS Dr Mick Tomey Class of 1988

Dr Tomey was a four-year letter winner in football and baseball. In football, he played on the 1984 Championship team. He was a two-time All-ACC and All-State selection as well as the 1987 CT Post Player of the Year, and the 1987 New Haven Register AllState team. In baseball, he was on the 1985 Class M Championship team, selected to the All-ACC team twice, and to the All-State team his senior season. He was also awarded a spot on the 1988 New York Daily News High School All-Star team. Dr Tomey went on to play baseball at Auburn University. To join us at the Hall of Fame Ceremony or to take out a congratulatory ad, visit



Mr Richard Dalling

In the early 80’s, Monsignor Shea and Dick Dalling had an idea for some of the extra dirt coming off the construction of Route 8. Today, we call it the Dalling Sports Complex, and 800 students play football, soccer, lacrosse, field hockey, baseball, and softball, as well as tennis on the fields that Dalling built. Dick and Mary Ann Dalling sent all five of their children as well as their children’s children through St Joes. In honor of his son Tom ’89, the Dallings established a memorial scholarship, given to a St Catherine of Siena grad to ensure a bond that is now 40 years in the making. The Dallings are a legacy—through their sweat, blood, and bricks, the Dalling name will always be a blessing for St Joes.

’87-’88 Boys Basketball

The ’87-’88 Boys Basketball Championship team, led by captains Tom Montelli and Marvin Saddler, captured three straight ACC Titles and Class L State Titles. Prior to its sole loss, the team had been on a 39 game win streak, the longest streak in the state at the time. They bounced back to win both the conference and state titles. At the completion of the season, the team was ranked #1 in Connecticut, #1 in New England and #14 nationally in the USA Today poll. Coach Vito Montelli secured his 400th career win with this team. Five members went on to play basketball at the Division I level.

Fall 2017: Season of Champions

my high school career, I have always wanted to be a leader at this school. Whether it was on the football “ Throughout field or leading the fan section. A student section can definitely change the outcome of a game and we did that multiple times. I am proud to say we are state champions.


~ Luke Bauro ’18

Being a part of the girls soccer team has given me the opportunity to meet girls that I now call family. Finally getting our FCIAC title after falling short the last two years is something we will all remember for a lifetime. I’ve never been more proud to call St Joes my home and can’t wait to see what the teams will achieve in years to come. ~ Jordan Wymbs ’18

” ” 13


Photo Credit: Trumbull Times. Former Trumbull, CT First Selectman, Ray Baldwin ’66 was sworn in to the Police Commission on February 6, 2017. This marks the first time in more than 30 years that Ray has had an official law enforcement role in town.

Laura Pizone ’69 (center) poses for a picture with her husband Robert ’69 and daughter, Christine ’01 after receiving an award for 25 years of service and dedication to the Oxford School District.

1970’s David Hoha ’71 and wife, Natalie, signed their marriage license in Madison, AL on November 16, 2017. When they travelled to CT in December, they decided to throw a party for family and friends. 84 people joined them, including Dennis Laccavole ’71 and William Schrade ’71. Food, drink, music, dancing and conversation made the night. “I am blessed with a wonderful wife, my extended family and good friends. Life is great. God bless our St Joes community.” Peggy Marino ’71 poses with her granddaughter, Taylor Elizabeth (1) and husband, Bob Marino (SJ Faculty). Taylor is the daughter of Emily (Marino) ’04 and husband Phil Schellhorn.

Ann Homza ’79, will be the second speaker in St Joe’s new Francis Xavier Lecture Series! Ann will speak on the issues of justice and racism in education.

Denise Walker Frezza ’87 is excited to share the news of her son, Luciano (11). “Luciano is kind, caring, and a fantastic athlete. He won 3 Little League Championships at 10 and 4 Championships in the 11-year-old bracket (including 3rd in the State)”. Luciano is Denise’s pride and joy! Alumnus Coach Joe Della Vecchia ’81 was awarded the CT High School Coaches Association 2017 Football Coach of the Year Award.

Christine Mansfield ’87 (center) is the Owner and CEO of Discovery Training Services, and recently received the 2017 Quinnipiac Chamber of Commerce “Women of Achievement” Community Impact Award.


Photo Credit: CT Post LtR: Jeff Pinckney, Pete Morotto and Fred Caserta ’88, founders of Fire Rescue, LLC

Friends from the Class of ’84 traveled from 5 different states to reconnect in Santa Fe in January 2018. Calling themselves the New England 9, their motto is “Do good while having fun!” Pictured above at the Santa Fe Cathedral Basilica of St Francis of Assisi are: Elaine Vanesse DeLuca, Liz Tierney Greenwood, Patty Huffman Marr, Kate Murphy, Kim Belichick Bradley, Claire Mealey Ingwerson, Susan Greenwood Adams, Beth Dalling Michalka, and Laura Falanga Wilson. 14

Fred Caserta ’88 and his start-up, Fire Rescue VR Simulator, was one of among 22 business owners participating in the 2018 Impact Accelerator program, an annual four-month program hosted by Hartford-based nonprofit reSET. The program features workshops, as well as other resources and mentorship opportunities to help entrepreneurs prepare to pitch their concepts and find investors.

ALUMNI NEWS James Dunford ’99 and wife, Leanne, welcomed their son, James Leonard Dunford on September 6, 2017 at 9:38pm. James was 8lbs and 21” at birth. Friends across the ’80s recently reunited over food and drinks. Pictured are: Jeff Sargent ’82, Jim Ferris ’84, Nanci Ferris-Zibell ’83, Eileen Scully ’87, Maura Rowe-Hegley, and Christine Donohue-Brown ’87.

Coach Montelli and friends were invited to the set of Inside College Basketball! Pictured: Greg Gumble, Seth Davis, Luke Gosselin ’88, Clark Kellogg, Tom Montelli ’17, Tom Montelli ’88, Vito Montelli, Michael Montelli ’82.

1990’s Faith Bailey ’96 is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker at Yale New Haven Hospital and has worked in the emergency department for the past 8 years. This year, Faith earned her Social Work 2 status after completing a 15 month project. Her daughter, Miranda Rose Bailey Russomano, is graduating from Green Mountain College in Vermont and her youngest daughter, Gloria Almonte Bailey, is graduating from 8th grade.

Michelle Beaulieu Lazurek ’96 writes bible studies and children’s books and has just published her 10th book. Her newest children’s book, Uniquely You, teaches children that God has given them gifts and talents that make them unique. In addition to being a multi-genre award winning author, she just became an associate literary agent with Wordwise Media Services.


Lynn Cadrin Meady ’00 and husband, Eric, welcomed twin boys into the world on January 19, 2017. Lucas James was born at 4:53 am, weighing in at 4lbs 12oz and 18.2” long. Logan Kyle was born at 5:00 am, weighing in at 5lbs 8oz and 18” long. Lucas and Logan join siblings, Evan and Charlotte. Lynn is the daughter of Elvira Cadrin, long time St Joes Librarian. Connecticut State Police Sgt Mike Dogali ’01, a State Trooper for 12 years, was off-duty on Monday, November 27, when he sprung into action and rescued a man from a car fire on Highway 84.

Jennifer Fusco Zoppi ’01 and her husband, Peter, welcomed their daughter, Olivia Grace Zoppi on November 3, 2017.

Elizabeth Marino Juselis ’02 (left) and husband, Tim, celebrated the christening of their son, Noah Scott Juselis on January 20, 2018 in Warrensburg, MO. They were joined by Anthony Bombaci ’02 (2nd on left) and Jen Maffeo Morrissey ’02.

Katherine Garber ’02 and her husband, Todd welcomed their second daughter, Murphy Marie Barsevich on January 19, 2018, weighing 8lbs 13oz. Murphy joins big sister Charlotte!

Colleen Morey Gerbino ’04 gave birth to Conor Alex Gerbino on January 6, 2018 at 2:14 am. He was 8lbs 6oz, and 8 days late!

Loriann Reyher Thopsey ’04 and her husband Graham welcomed Oliver Brooks Thopsey on February 14, 2018, weighing 7lbs 13oz and 20” inches long. 15

ALUMNI NEWS Christopher Pia ’05 won the seat for Councilman, District 1, Stratford, CT on November 7, 2017. Chris resides in Lordship, Stratford and is a business owner of Pinnacle Strategies, Inc. and a representative for New York Life. He is currently chairman of the Stratford Chamber of Commerce and is past president of the Stratford Rotary Club.

Alexandria Julian ’08 and Evan Byron ’08 were engaged on May 3, 2017. They both attended SJ together and were high school sweethearts. They plan to get married in April 2019, alongside many other SJ alumni, who are still their close friends! Alexandria writes, “It’s amazing how SJ ties you together, providing you with strong friendships that will last.” Siblings Brittany Hyde ’09 and Richard Hyde ’13 have opened their own business selling authentic and elegant French Macarons in the Trumbull Mall.

Fireman ED Justice Cook ’15, United States Coast Guard, was a member of the United State Coast Guard Hockey Team, which participated in the Interational Armed Forces Hockey Tournament in Las Vegas over the Veterans Day Weekend. The team On February 3, 2018, Katie Landry ’09 became Mrs Woolums as she celebrated the Sacrament went a perfect 5-0 and were the Champions of of Holy Matrimony with Blake Woolums in hte New Dawn Division. 52 military teams from Houston, TX. Two of her classmates Lydia around the world particiapted in the tournament. Monks ’09 (top, center) and Kylen Farrell ’09 (bottom, left) were bridesmaids! Lydia is also Nina Panullo ’13 was expecting a baby boy in July and Kylen recently accepted into the Nursing earned her master’s degree and became a Program at SCSU in National Certified Counselor. 2015. In July 2016 she began working as a Patient Care Associate 2010’s in the Neuroscience ICU at Yale New Haven Hospital and she loves it! She just accepted a job there as a registered nurse after graduating and passing her boards. Nina’s completed over 600 hours of clinical experience, is a member of the National Student Nurses Association, and was invited to join the Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society for Nurses. She will graduate in May. “I look forward to beginning my career as a nurse with so much excitement and I can’t wait to see where my career takes me. I plan on going back to school to get my Masters degree in nursing in a few years.” On September 30, 2017, Lauren Fernandez ’10 married her college sweetheart, Timothy, at St Jerome Parish in Weymouth, MA and became Lauren Curtin.

Jade ’15 and Jana Hernaez ’15 are majoring in Biology at Providence College and both made the Dean’s List for the fall 2017 semester!

2017 Alumni: In Memoriam

Masses are celebrated in the Alumni Chapel at 10:00am throughout the year and all are welcome to attend. For more information or to schedule a mass, contact Director of Advancement and Alumni Affairs, Michele Krasznai at Michael Owen Allison ’75 Maureen Bennett ’80 Wayne P Bloschichak ’89 James A Dennean ’75 Sarah Ellen DeVorak ’79 Bill Freibott ’75 Robert E Grailich ’67 Cheryl Marie Bohn Leblanc ’85 Eugene Lewis ’84 Kathleen Lilley ’88 Eileen Sheehan McCann ’75 Joseph Pieragostini ’73 16

John Trautman ’71 Michael Verderame ’80 Katie Walkley ’99 Jennifer Cira Warner ’93 ANNUAL MASSES Melissa Albin ’89 Michael Burke Edward Caliendo John Cesario Eileen Colllins Thomas Dalling ’89

Helen & Robert Dalton Sister Catherine Fanning SSND Diane Duford Gentile ’70 Albert Graham Bernard Helfrich Eileen Hickey ’91 George Johnston Genevieve Leso Loretta Martone Margaret Turecek Nikituk ’66 Robert O’Keefe John & Clara Ondecko

James & Catherine Pezzullo Karen Dunford Reilly ’75 Bob Santucci Frank Serino ’72 Frank & Rosalie Skawinski Michael Thomas, Jr Ernest Trefz Dr Juan Vazquez David Wade ’69 Ryan Walsh



June 13 - 14

48 Hours...May The Best Class Win!

In their first official act as SJ Alumni, the Class of 2018 has issued a challenge to ALL alumni—don’t let them win! For 48 hours (12AM June 13 - 11:59PM June 14), the alumni class with the highest participation in the Class Act Challenge will be recognized as our Class Act Champions! The class will be recognized in our 2017-2018 Annual Report, during Homecoming Weekend 2018, and earn some serious bragging rights! Your class gift directly impacts the experience of current and future Cadets and builds your class’ legacy of support!

Ready to Show Your School Spirit? Take the Challenge! Visit to donate! Every Cadet. Any Amount. Your participation makes all the difference for students, today and tomorrow. Thank you for all that you do for St Joseph High School.

Profile for St Joseph High School

Spring Communique 2018  

The Magazine of St Joseph High School, Trumbull, CT

Spring Communique 2018  

The Magazine of St Joseph High School, Trumbull, CT

Profile for sjcadets