Hundreds of people from every part of the community celebrated the school’s 50th Anniversary at a Gala Dinner Dance on Sat., March 31, 2012, at the Hartford Marriott Hotel.
The event grossed nearly $350,000, making it the second most successful fundraiser in NWC history. (The first was a cross-country Bike-a-Thon in 1992 led by then-President Rev. Henry Frascadore, which raised $750,000 and established the NWC endowment.) The proceeds from this year’s event will go entirely toward financial aid, providing funds for annual and endowed scholarships.
“This event is a milestone in our history, and will allow us to create more scholarships for students wishing to attend Northwest Catholic,” said NWC Principal/Chief Administrator Margaret Williamson. “In addition, it was an opportunity for all of our constituencies to join together to celebrate the success of their beloved school. We could not be more pleased.”
WFSB anchorwoman Irene O’Connor ’85 and WDRC radio personality Brad Davis, whose daughter graduated from Northwest Catholic, were the emcees of the live auction, which raised just over $25,000 on sports tickets, trips, and a shoreline wine tasting.
The NWC motto – “In Your light, we shall see light” – set the theme of the Gala, which was evident in every corner of the ballroom. Instead of flowers, for example, the table centerpieces were three-sided luminaria with vellum panels that depicted the NWC motto, the Dominican Sisters’ motto, and a teacher, administrator, or staff member who had been influential in the life of a NWC student. These 45 different influential “luminaries” were nominated by alums over the past six months.
The Gala crowd, 550 strong, included alumni from every decade, current and former faculty and staff, and current and former parents. Three former heads of school were present – Rev. William O’Keefe, Rev. Henry Frascadore, and Sister Doris Regan, who traveled from Honduras for the event. A total of 73 different companies, families, and individuals signed on as sponsors; sponsorships ranging from $1,000 to $50,000.
United Technologies Corporation and Kenneth and Judith Boudreau were the two presenting sponsors of the Gala, contributing $50,000 each. The UTC donation will create a STEM scholarship for a NWC student interested in studying Science, Technology, Engineering, or Math. The Boudreaus’ contribution will establish the Boudreau Family Leadership Scholarship, earmarked for an upperclass NWC student who has displayed leadership skills.
“We are so grateful to the many members of our community who supported the Gala with their sponsorships, donations, and attendance,” said NWC Director of Advancement Patricia Walsh. “We definitely could not have done this without the tireless efforts of an amazing team of volunteers and NWC staff who collaborated for almost three years to plan and execute our beautiful celebration.”