The University of St. Joseph’s black-tie gala Friday night in Hartford honored the Most Reverend Henry J. Mansell, D.D., Hartford’s Archbishop, and commemorated three women in service to others (who also happen to be USJ alumni) Bonnie Gauthier, Hebrew Health Care; Molly Rees Gavin, Connecticut Community Care, Inc.; and Sister Beth Fischer, The Wellness Center.
“I share the honor with the students and the faculty who are involved with the program,” said Fischer.
The Wellness Center on Church Street is a partnership between the University and the Franciscan Center for Urban Ministry. Nursing, nutrition, social work and graduate counseling students serve as volunteers in the Wellness Center’s outreach programs.
“What makes it unique is it’s not just the academic year, it’s 12 months,” said Fischer. “They are there for vacations…They are awesome.”
Among those at the “Imagine…The Sky’s The Limit” gala, held at the Connecticut Convention Center, were Jeanne Merola, chair of the board of trustees at the University and Senior VP at Hartford Steamboiler; board of trustees members Paddi LeShane and Michael McDonough; board member (and former honoree) E. Clayton “Skip” Gengras, Jr. and wife Edie; and Laura and Geoffrey Sheehan. The elegant evening featured a cocktail reception, dinner, dancing, music by Shaded Soul and a silent auction.
“Both the Archbishop and these women, our alumns, are doing all these things in the community and really providing a leadership for the Greater Hartford area,” said St. Joseph president Pamela Trotman Reid.
Proceeds from the evening will benefit the Pope Pius XII Library Renovation Fund at USJ.