Call them the Fab Five.
Matthew Bertani (’79), Kevin Cameron (’98), DebyJo and Jack Ericksen and Robert Lovstad were honored by the Joliet Catholic Academy Alumni Association with Alumni Awards at its annual Honors Banquet.
Shamus Mudron (’95), the president of the JCA Alumni Association, was master of ceremonies and the invocation was given by Jeffrey Budz, JCA’s Principal and CEO. The event at the Joliet Country Club was run by the JCA Alumni Association in conjunction with Holly Scordo (’90), JCA’s Director of Alumni Relations.
An update on the progress being made at the college preparatory high school for boys and girls was delivered as well by Budz, who also handled the benediction.
Bertani was named Alumnus of the Year and Lovstad was named Honorary Alumnus, while Cameron received the Rev. Paddy McGowan Award and DebyJo and Jack Ericksen were given the Sister Anna Marie Becker Service to JCA Award.
The Alumni Board was represented by Mudron, vice president Ragan Freitag (’99), treasurer Frank DiBartolomeo (’81) and secretary Mary Kroeger Sepulveda (’99) along with board members Sarah Bornhofen-Orr (’03), Sue Georgantas Gulas (’81), Michael Paone (’97), Karen Ragusa Grubisich (’81), Kelly Kovic Alt (’88), Christine Boban Merriman (’81), Mike Van Tassel (’95), Doug Giaudrone (’81) and Angela Doumanian.
Mudron praised the 2012 Alumni Award winners and spoke about how the Alumni Association has donated over $370,000 to JCA since 1995 for capital improvement projects and tuition assistance.
“To our recipients, I appreciate all of your hard work and commitment to this school,” Mudron said. “We hope that you continue to be proud supporters. I believe the existence of our Alumni Board can be summed up with two points: to build a spirit of community, friendship and camaraderie among our alumni and to promote the interests and welfare of JCA as it stands today by supporting JCA.
“Through your support, the Alumni Association strives to help Angel and Hillmen families in their time of need, making sure generations to come will be able to experience Joliet Catholic Academy like they have.”
A short biography on the award winners follows.
MATTHEW G. BERTANI: He lives in Joliet with his wife of 23 years, Kathy (’80) and children Louis Joseph (’14) and Anna Rose (’12). He is one of eight children, six of whom were educated at JCHS or JCA. Bertani attended Drake University and the University of Arizona’s College of Law. He was appointed as an Associate Judge in Will County in December of 2010. He served on JCA’s Alumni Board for six years.
ROBERT LOVSTAD: “Captain Bob” has worked at JCA for over 20 years as the Food Service Director. An assistant football coach, he has helped with school fundraisers and chaperoned student events. He enjoys fishing and NASCAR and spending time with his wife Judy and their daughter Stacey. “Being a part of the school and the football coaching staff has been some of the best years of my life,” he said.
KEVIN CAMERON: Cameron attended Georgia Tech on a baseball scholarship and played professionally for nine years, including three in the major leagues with Minnesota, San Diego and Oakland. A pitcher, he set a Padres team record for most scoreless innings to start a career. He notes that the highlight of his time at JCA was the day he met his wife Sara (Wolfersberger, ’98) in Dave Douglas’ math class.
DEBYJO AND JACK ERICKSEN: The Ericksens have been heavily involved with JCA since 1998. They served on the Parent Board from 1998-2009, twice on the Jubilate committee, and have been the Concession Stand Coordinators since 2005. They have sent four children through JCA with Jason (’98), Carollyn (’98), Chris (’02) and Mike (’09). Their hobbies include family time, traveling and biking.