A Celebration of Service – IMS Awards Staff and Volunteers

By IMS Staff

Educating Philadelphia’s youngest citizens is incredibly rewarding, but it’s a big job. It takes hundreds of dedicated individuals – teachers, staff, and volunteers – to serve the nearly 5000 students who attend IMS schools. From maintenance staff and librarians to tutors and coaches, it is the passionate and dedicated spirit of the people in our school buildings every day that drives our mission and helps transform the lives of children across the city.

As the 2017 school year came to a close, faculty, staff, and volunteers of the Independence Mission Schools network celebrated their tireless efforts with a prayer service and awards ceremony at St. Raymond Church. Following a prayerful introduction by Rev. Msgr. Wilfred Pashley, Pastor of St. Rose of Lima Church, Anne McGoldrick and Rick Auletta, new President of IMS, acknowledged all nominees and presented awards to the winners (listed below). Congratulations to all the nominees!

“[Ms. Jones] makes the process of learning pleasurable and as a result my son is inspired to learn.”

St. John Neumann Teacher Impact Award Nominees

These teachers were nominated for their outstanding commitment to education using innovative best practices in instruction, motivating students to develop a lifelong love of learning, and having a positive impact on their colleagues.

Theresa Tiffin, Gerard Visco (DePaul Catholic); Maura Gilbert, Lindsay Loughery, Sr. Rosanne Orchon, SSJ (Our Mother of Sorrows/St. Ignatius); Kim Ciocci, Sarah Riley, Lisa Bassett, Caroline Keeney, Loredana Modafferi, Shannon Arena Boyce (St. Barnabas); Terri Power, Janet Hunter (St. Cyril of Alexandria); Margaret Long (St. Frances Cabrini); Elaine Carboni, Kaitlin Williams, Josephine Varanese (St. Gabriel); Terry Peach (St. Helena-Incarnation); Thuy Ta (St. Malachy); Emma Ackels, Charlotte Gregory, Jessica Lopez, Bill Neef, Vernessa Johnson, Joe Dembick, Catherine Morrison, Sandra Streeter, Maria Dana, Susan Edelman, Alison Mezzanoffe (St. Martin de Porres); Marissa Higgins, Scott Jackson, Emily Munoz, Taylor Cassedy, Virginia O’Neill, Andrew Bevilaqua, Jennifer Muir (St. Martin of Tours); Lauren Sobieski (St. Raymond of Penafort); Michelle Maqboul (St. Rose of Lima); Molly Scheuerman, Michael Tattersley, Erin Kenny, Meghan Sundberg, Christel Turingan (St. Thomas Aquinas)


Kerrie Jones – St. Thomas Aquinas Catholic School
Erin Knox – St. Veronica Catholic School
Mary Iacovelli – Holy Cross Catholic School
Jennifer McLaughlin – St. Raymond of Penafort Catholic School
Dominique Fuller-Finley – St. Martin de Porres Catholic School

“[Mr. Jeter] brings joy to work each and every day.”

St. Katherine Drexel Award Nominees

This award is given to any IMS employee for outstanding service, commitment, and dedication to the Independence Mission Schools. These nominees go above and beyond the normal expectations of their positions with a positive attitude self-sacrifice and kindness representing the heart of IMS.

Diane Zieg (DePaul Catholic); Patricia Brown, Josh Rundle, Sr. Owen Patricia Bonner, SSJ (Our Mother of Sorrows/St. Ignatius); Catherine Callinan (St. Barnabas); Cassandra Copes (St. Frances Cabrini); Pat DeJohn (St. Gabriel); Frank Kopacz (St. Malachy); Juan Narvaez, Doris Narvaez (St. Martin de Porres); Ella Cooper, Minnie Spady (St. Raymond of Penafort); Juanito Rosal, Betzabe Toledo (St. Thomas Aquinas); Vicky Morales (St. Veronica); Reggie Urmson (Central Office)


Yolanda Haynes – Holy Cross Catholic School
Al Jeter – Our Mother of Sorrows/St. Ignatius School
Barbara Gray – St. Cyril of Alexandria Catholic School
Sr. Julia Ann Walsh, IHM – St. Martin of Tours Catholic School
Jackie Phillips – IMS Central Office

“A retired IBM employee, Tom’s dedication to IMS has improved the experience of thousands of our students.”

Angel of the Catholic School Award Nominees

This award is presented to a volunteer whose dedication and commitment fulfills the message and mission of IMS by embracing and enhancing the vision of Catholic education for the school or the IMS network.

Jackie Corbett (DePaul Catholic); Charles Seawright, Karen Seawright (Holy Cross);  Emma Caffey (Our Mother of Sorrows/ St. Ignatius); James Gray (St. Cyril of Alexandria); Greg Alexander (St. Frances Cabrini); Sr. Regina Angeline Oberdick, IHM (St. Gabriel); Lisette Arroyo (St. Helena-Incarnation); Margie Turk (St. Malachy); Cheryl Nichols (St. Rose of Lima); Steven Chudoff, Marietta Oslan (St. Veronica)


Tom Vitt – various IMS network schools

Nominated by an incredible number of her peers, […] the words repeated across [Sr. Nancy’s] many nominations are wisdom, guidance, kindness, and prayer.”

Christ the Teacher Award

This award is presented to a Principal of an IMS school chosen by his or her colleagues for outstanding Christ-like leadership in a Catholic school community.

Sr. Nancy Fitzerald, SSJ – Principal, St. Martin de Porres Catholic School

St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Years of Service Award

Christopher Leonard, Elizabeth Mavromatis, Elaine Diaz (DePaul Catholic); Joyce Leaphart (Holy Cross); Christina Fisher, Patricia Brown (Our Mother of Sorrows/St. Ignatius); Robert Wiseley, Vince Rossi (St. Barnabas); Maryanne Barbato, Barbara Mitchell, Loretta Yogis (St. Frances Cabrini); Josephine Varanese, Sr. Eileen Gillespie, IHM (St. Gabriel); Annette Hanagan (St. Helena-Incarnation); Robin Bacon (St. Malachy); Joseph Dembik, Ralph Price, Lisa Ruffin, Sophia Williams, Charlotte Gregory (St. Martin de Porres); Eileen Poole, Joseph Smith, Sr. Jeannine Dawson, Sr. Susan Immaculate Platt, John Brennan, Patricia Farrell, Jesse Frechette (St. Martin of Tours); Minnie Spady (St. Raymond of Penafort); Sr. Rita Murphy, Sr. Catherine Clark, Michelle Maqboul, Christina Bell, Donna Spano, Jhymy Papillon (St. Rose of Lima); Mike Tattersley, Juanito Rosal, Betzabe Toledo, Lisa Sailer, Christopher Joyce (St. Thomas Aquinas); Leigh Ann Wissman, Iris Victoria, Sr. Stephen Frances Meyers (St. Veronica)

Photos by Araceli Silva and Fidel Moreno – VideoStudio.