St. Mary's Academy auction exceeds $1 million; Breaks auction fundraising record
Portland, Ore. - St. Mary's Academy's 27th Annual Auction: A Moment to Sparkle raised a record-breaking $1,070,000. This extraordinary amount is the largest in the history of the event and $170,000 over last year.
"We are so grateful to our generous supporters who attended and participated in our annual auction. The magnitude of the auction's success is a testament to the strong belief our parents, alumnae and benefactors have in the value of a St. Mary's Academy education. The funds raised at the auction will allow St. Mary's to continue to provide a premier college-preparatory Catholic education to young women," said St. Mary's Academy President Christina Friedhoff.
More than 700 guests joined St. Mary's Academy at the Oregon Convention Center's Portland Ballroom the evening of Saturday, April 11. The success of the auction is attributed, in part, to auction co-chairs, Molly Mathews Bjorklund '85 and Marilyn Whitaker, both parents of current St. Mary's students. Sparkling examples of volunteer leadership, these women inspired participation and altruism leading up to and on the night of the event. Cathy Marshall of KGW served as the mistress of ceremonies for the evening, keeping the crowd excited and engaged.
"It was a spectacular night that celebrated the best of St. Mary's. Our donors were extraordinarily generous and the energy and enthusiasm for St. Mary's was palpable. We are so grateful for the leadership of our co-chairs, Marilyn Brown Whitaker and Molly Bjorklund Mathews '85 who worked tirelessly on behalf of the school. It's an exciting time to be a part of St. Mary's as we set the stage for a bold future ahead," said St. Mary's Academy's Vice President for Development, Emily Niedermeyer Becker '86.
Highlights of the evening included Bids for Kids, an opportunity for auction guests to contribute to the school's tuition assistance program, led by Sister Linda Patrick '76, Assistant Principal and a Sister of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary, the school's founding order. Bids for Kids raised a record-breaking more than $300,000 in support of the 41 percent of St. Mary's families who receive financial aid. This was leveraged by a challenge grant provided by the B.P., Lester and Regina John Foundation and the OCF Joseph E. Weston Public Foundation. Sister Linda will retire at the end of the school year after serving St. Mary's for 20 years.
The auction is St. Mary's largest annual fundraising event. Proceeds from the auction benefit the more than 700 students who attend St. Mary's Academy.
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St. Mary's Academy is a Catholic high school for young women located in the heart of downtown Portland that provides a challenging college-preparatory education with a focus on developing the whole person. Founded in 1859 by the Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary, St. Mary's Academy is Oregon's oldest continuously operating secondary school and offers a supportive learning environment to a diverse student body from more than 35 cities in urban, suburban and rural Oregon and Southwest Washington. For more information about St. Mary's Academy, please visit www.stmaryspdx.org.
St. Mary's Academy celebrates Earth Day with author Colleen Carpenter, Ph.D., as part of its annual Women in Theology lecture
Portland, Ore. - St. Mary's Academy will host its second annual Women in Theology lecture on Wednesday, April 22 at 7:00 p.m. in St. Mary's Academy's Clark Family Auditorium. This year's lecturer, Dr. Colleen Carpenter, will speak about "Living on Holy Ground: A Spirituality for Earth Day (and Every Day)." The lecture will be followed by a reception with Dr. Carpenter in the St. Mary's Academy Student Commons. St. Mary's students will also benefit from this speaker as Dr. Carpenter will talk to the entire student body during an all-school assembly.
Dr. Carpenter is an Associate Professor of Theology at St. Catherine University in St. Paul, Minnesota. Her fields of interest are systematic theology, ecotheology and feminine spirituality. Dr. Carpenter's academic background includes a Ph.D. in Religion and Literature, and an M.A. in Theology from the University of Chicago Divinity School, an M.A. in English Literature from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and an A.B. in English and American Literatures and Languages from Harvard University. Last May, she was awarded the Sister Mona Riley Endowed Chair of the Humanities for 2014-2017 at St. Catherine University. Dr. Carpenter has given numerous presentations at the yearly Catholic Theological Society of American meeting. Her second book Is the Earth Holy? An Introduction to Ecotheology will be published in 2016.
Thanks to an anonymous annual grant from a St. Mary's Academy family, the school has been able to cultivate its annual women in theology events. "Our school and our mission were created by women who were leaders in theology, the Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary, who opened St. Mary's Academy more than 150 years ago. It is our goal to walk into their footsteps by hosting annual Women in Theology lectures benefitting the students and the community. We are looking forward to welcoming Dr. Carpenter to link women in theology and Earth Day," said Patty Gorman, St. Mary's Academy's Theology Department Chair.
Tickets are $10 each and can be purchased online at stmaryspdx.org /women_in_theology. St. Mary's Academy appreciates the unique opportunity provided by its thoughtful and generous donors to share the voice of women in theology with the greater community.
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St. Mary's Academy is a Catholic high school for young women located in the heart of downtown Portland that provides a challenging college-preparatory education with a focus on developing the whole person. Founded in 1859 by the Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary, St. Mary's Academy is Oregon's oldest continuously operating secondary school and offers a supportive learning environment to a diverse student body from more than 35 cities in urban, suburban and rural Oregon and Southwest Washington. It is the only school in the state to have received three Blue Ribbon awards from the U.S. Department of Education. For more information about St. Mary's Academy, please visit www.stmaryspdx.org.