The 29th Bruin Benefit Celebrazione was like no other! It raised a record-breaking $301,250 (net) on Saturday, April 24, 2021.
We honored Fr. Allan DaCorte, ofm who will be retiring on June 30th after serving as Padua’s president for eight years, as well as Vice Principal Br. Tom Carroll, ofm who is moving on to a new ministry with the Franciscan Formation Program after 32 years at Padua. Both of these friars changed Padua Franciscan, as well as the lives of so many students. The video tributes to them were heartfelt, funny and sincere as students, faculty and alumni shared their reflections. In celebration of their impact on Padua, the Forever Friar Scholarship was created to provide financial assistance to students, as well as honor their legacy and that of the many Franciscan Friars who have graced the halls of Padua. The Forever Friar Scholarship was fully funded at $100,000 through the generous support of the Padua family that evening.
This year’s event was hybrid with guests streaming the program live from the comfort of their homes, as well as a limited number of special guests of Fr. Allan and Br. Tom celebrating in-person in the Padua Gymnasium.
Padua senior Daniel Obloj ‘21 shared his story and gratitude with the Padua community. When it looked as though a Padua education was not possible for Daniel after the passing of his father, hope, perseverance and Padua’s financial assistance offering made his dream a reality. The rest of his story is history; he will graduate with honors in June and attend Case Western Reserve University in the fall, where he will play on the football team and study aerospace and mechanical engineering. Daniel represents just one of many students who succeed through the generosity of our Padua benefactors.
Principal (and soon-to-be President) David Stec ‘86 entertained the guests with humor and passion as he led the live auction and Fund-A-Bruin segments of the evening. Virtual and in-person guests had fun bidding on several new and exciting offerings, including flying on a private jet to watch the Browns take on the Ravens in Baltimore next season, a walking tour of Little Italy and dinner along with David and Beth Stec, a signed Odell Beckham, Jr. jersey, Pappy Van Winkle bourbon whiskey and a blessed keepsake quilt made with Fr. Allan’s T-shirts.
The 50/50 raffle generated more than $11,000. The split was graciously donated back to Padua by the winner Lori Margevicius. The Hess family won the $3,000 tuition voucher raffle for next school year.
The many challenges COVID has brought us did not deter the Padua family! A special thanks to the benefit sponsors, the generous bidders and the committee who helped make this year’s Celebrazione a success in every way. You can watch a recording of the event on Padua’s YouTube channel.
Please mark your calendar for next year’s 30th Bruin Benefit – Saturday, April 30, 2022. Let’s hope that we will be together for one big party in celebration of the 60th anniversary of Padua educating young men and women!
PROGRAM BOOKLET: Click here to flip through the program booklet and see our sponsors.