On June 29th, St. Vincent de Paul celebrated 55 years of service to the community by hosting over 200 Vincentians, volunteers and supports at St. Stephen Church in Walnut Creek.
Sister Paule Freeburg, a member of the Daughters of Charity and the Western Region Spiritual Advisor to St. Vincent de Paul, captured the spirit of the evening speaking about the love that it takes to serve the needy day after day. Additionally, Steve Wilcox spoke on behalf of his wife, Vincentian Peg Wilcox, highlighting the impact that doing the work of a Vincentian has had on their lives.
This year’s prestigious Top Hat Award was awarded to Ron Weston, a beloved Vincentian of over 30 years and former Executive Director, who passed away earlier this year. Eileen Weston, Ron’s wife of 54 years and fellow Vincentian, accepted the award with a moving speech that highlighted Weston’s life of service to the needy in the community.
Other awards were presented as well, including the following:
Blessed Rosalie Rendu (Zeal for the Poor) Award:
This award was presented to Vincentians that went above and beyond to serve our neighbors in Contra Costa County. These individuals bring a special level of enthusiasm to their work with the underserved. They are:
|Sue Banducci, St. John Vianney||Joyce Ohanesian, Immaculate Heart of Mary|
|Tony Bargas, Our Lady Queen of the World||Karen Randle, St. Anne|
|Linda Bilbay, District Council||Donald Rondeau, St. Joseph|
|Rose Cable, St. Catherine of Siena||Duane Rusted, Christ the King|
|Evo Coehlo, St. Anne||John Taillac, St. Joan of Arc|
St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Award:
St. Elizabeth Ann Seton overcame many obstacles before dedicating her life to works of charity and education. This award is presented to Vincentians who have persevered through adversity in service to our neighbors in need.
|Don DeWitt, St. Agnes||Jordan Pitta, Immaculate Heart of Mary|
|Flora Dumlao, Our Lady Queen of the World||Noreen Pitta, Immaculate Heart of Mary|
|Kathie Hieb, St. Agnes||Theresa Rusted, Christ the King|
|Maurine Jones, St. John Vianney||Gloria Schafer, St. Agnes|
|Arlesa Miles, St. Callistus||Doris Snyder, St. John Vianney|
|Bev O’Connor, St. Isidore||Ted Todd, St. Mary|
|Ronn O’Connor, St. Isidore||Monica Wnuk, St. Joan of Arc|
The St. Louise de Marillac Award:
St. Louise de Marillac, inspired by her spiritual advisor St. Vincent de Paul, co-founded of the Daughters of Charity as a mechanism to serve the poor. This established the importance of the role of Spiritual Advisor that The Society utilizes to this day. This award recognizes our fellow Vincentians currently in the role of Spiritual Advisor who exemplify the dedication to the spiritual growth of The Society.
|Francis Barnes, Most Holy Rosary||Dick Sanders, St. Isidore|
| Deacon Loc Ngyuen, Our Lady Queen of the World
Finally, a special recognition award was presented to Mr. Stephen Krank, longtime Vincentian Coordinator for his embodiment of Vincentian values and unwavering service. Pictured below, from left to right, is Ron Costanzo, Board President, Claudia Ramirez, Executive Director, Eileen Weston, Top Hat Award Recipient, Jim Noe, Longtime Vincentian, and Steve Krank, Special Recognition Award Recipient.