2014 Award Winners
|2014 LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT AWARD,
Tom Monaghan, Founder, Domino's Pizza
although best known as the founder of Domino’s Pizza and former
owner of the Detroit Tigers baseball franchise, is currently devoting
his attention full time to non-profit endeavors, specifically focused on
underwriting Catholic higher education. This support primarily flows through
the Ave Maria Foundation, which he founded in 1983 and for which he serves
as chairman of the board.
1998, Monaghan provided the impetus for a major initiative in Catholic
higher education with the founding of Ave Maria Institute in
Ypsilanti, Michigan (which later became Ave Maria College), a
Catholic liberal arts institution designed to prepare students for
leadership in academics, professional occupations, and service to the
Maria College was the predecessor to Ave Maria University, which was
founded in 2003 and which operated in an interim facilities in Naples, FL
until its permanent facilities were completed in the 2007. The
university’s permanent campus is located in Ave Maria, Florida, which is
just northeast of Naples. Monaghan serves as the university’s
In addition to supporting the university, the Ave Maria Foundation
provided the initial funding for Ave Maria School of Law, which was
founded in Ann Arbor, Michigan, but relocated to Naples, Florida in 2009 (for
which Monaghan serves as chairman of the board of governors). The
Foundation also helped establish the Thomas More Law Center, a
public-interest law firm that provides legal counsel to organizations and
individuals whose religious and other freedoms are threatened.
1987, Monaghan founded Legatus (Latin for “ambassador”),
an international organization of Catholic CEO’s and presidents committed
to studying, living and spreading their faith through their professional and
personal lives. Then-Domino’s
CEO, Tom Monaghan and his wife, Marjorie, met Pope John Paul II on May 7,
1987 (pictured, above). This meeting inspired Monaghan to found Legatus.
was born in Ann Arbor in 1937. His father died four years later,
ushering in a childhood spent largely in an orphanage and a succession of
foster homes. After graduating from Ann Arbor’s St. Thomas High
School in 1955, and enrolling at Ferris State University in Big Rapids, MI,
Monaghan enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps in 1956. Honorably
discharged three years later, he returned to Ann Arbor, where he enrolled at
the University of Michigan.
still a student, Monaghan founded Domino’s Pizza. He and his
brother, James, borrowed $900 to buy a small pizza store called DomiNick’s
in Ypsilanti. He later bought his brother’s share of the business,
and opened additional stores in Ann Arbor and Mt. Pleasant, Michigan.
By 1998, Domino’s had 6,250 stores, and ranked as the world’s largest
pizza delivery chain, pioneering a number of industry innovations inspired
story behind Domino’s Pizza (including the many obstacles and setbacks
Monaghan overcame and the path he took to success) was compiled for the
first time in his 1986 autobiography, Pizza Tiger, published by
Random House. He sold Domino’s Pizza in 1998 to Bain Capital, Inc.,
leaving behind its day-to-day operations, which he had overseen for 38
has received honorary degrees from twelve universities around the country,
and in March of 2000, he was named an Honorary Fellow of Magdalene
College within Britain’s University of Cambridge.
and his wife, Marjorie, have four daughters, ten grandchildren and
Of Christmases Past, Present
O’Hara = "Miracle on 34th Street"
first captured the public’s eye in her breakout role as the
dancing gypsy, Esmeralda, in The Hunchback of Notre Dame. She
has held our attention ever since. Known for playing feisty
heroines, O'Hara's famously flame-red hair lit up the screen like no
other star from Hollywood’s golden age. In a career that has
spanned over seventy-five years, she has starred in over sixty
motion pictures including such critically acclaimed classics as Miracle
on 34th Street, The Quiet Man, and How Green Was My
Valley. She is widely recognized as Ireland's most renowned and
Born Maureen FitzSimons on August 17, 1920 in Ranelagh,
Ireland, O’Hara began acting at age five with her own shadow. She
studied at the Ena Mary Burke School of Elocution and Drama and by
age ten had joined the Rathmines Theatre Company working in amateur
productions. She was soon hired by Radio Telefis Eireann (RTE) to
perform classic plays over the radio reaching nearly every household
As a teenager, Maureen FitzSimons joined the famed Abbey
Theatre and worked nights typing tags at a local laundry. She was
offered a leading role with the Abbey Players at age seventeen but
chose instead to take a motion picture screen test in London at the
request of Elstree Studios. Her screen test caught the attention of
Oscar-winning actor and producer Charles Laughton, who quickly
signed her to a seven-year contract. Laughton launched his new protégé’s
film career by casting her as his niece, Mary Yellan, in Alfred
Hitchcock's Jamaica Inn (1939) and by changing her screen
name to Maureen O’Hara.
Maureen O’Hara first arrived in Hollywood in 1939 to make
her American film debut (opposite Laughton’s Quasimodo) in The
Hunchback of Notre Dame. She was unable to return to Ireland
with the outbreak of World War II and became part of Hollywood’s
studio system when her contract was sold to RKO Pictures. In 1941,
O'Hara achieved critical acclaim for her haunting portrayal of
Angharad in the Welsh family saga How Green Was My Valley,
which marked her first collaboration with legendary director John
Ford. The film went on to win five Oscars including Best Picture and
During the 1940s and 1950s, O'Hara was often cast in lavish
Technicolor movies. Her fiery characters and striking features
earned her the nickname "Queen of Technicolor." O’Hara
is also the first female action star, having performed many of her
own stunts and sword fighting sequences in swashbuckling pictures.
The most notable include The Black Swan with Tyrone Power, Sinbad
the Sailor with Douglas Fairbanks Jr., and At Sword’s Point
with Cornel Wilde. In 1947, O'Hara appeared in the holiday
classic Miracle on 34th Street, playing a single mother whose
sensibilities are challenged by Santa Claus.
period in O’Hara’s career is also highlighted by her frequent
work with John Ford and John Wayne. Her screen
chemistry with Wayne was dynamic and she served as “the
Duke’s leading lady” in a series of Ford films including Rio
Grande, The Wings of Eagles, and her personal favorite, The
O'Hara turned to lighter roles in the 1960s appearing in
family comedies such as The Parent Trap, Mr. Hobbs Takes a
Vacation, McLintock!, and Spencer’s Mountain. In 1971,
she reunited with John Wayne a final time in the western comedy Big
Jake, before retiring to operate a Caribbean commuter airline
with her husband, aviator Charles F. Blair. Upon Blair’s
tragic death in a plane crash, O’Hara became the first woman in
United States history to head a scheduled commercial airline.
1991, following a 20-year hiatus, O'Hara returned to the silver
screen to play John Candy's overbearing Irish mother in the
bittersweet comedy Only the Lonely. She later starred in a
string of television movies and published her bestselling memoir, Tis
Herself, in 2004.
motion picture academy announced on Thursday, August 8, 2014 that
will receive an honorary Oscar on November 8, 2014 in the Dolby
Ballroom at Hollywood & Highland.
Of St. Nicholas Award Winners
Gerardo Cioffari – Paul W. Smith – Joe Kocur – Ron Mann –
Chris Baker – Debra Bonde
Nicholas as Our Model
Gerardo Cioffari –
Centro Studi Nicolini, Bari, Italia
Father Gerardo Cioffari
was born in Calitri, Italy on December 1, 1943. Following his
primary education, he joined the Dominican Order in Naples,
Italy. In 1970, the friar was ordained a Dominican priest. Shortly
thereafter, he received his Master of Divinity Degree from St.
Vladimir's Theological Seminary, Crestwood, New York (1973).
He attained his Doctorate in Ecclesiastical Oriental Studies
at the Pontifical Oriental Institute in Rome (1977). Padre
Cioffari has distinguished himself globally as highly respected
scholar historian, and is the Director of the Center for
Studies Nicolaiani. His important personal responsibilities
include the care of the Archive and Library of the Basilica of S.
Nicola, Bari, Italy.
1990, the Dominican first published a magazine, Nicholas
more than 3 decades, Fr. Gerardo Cioffari’s diligent work and
scholarship have contributed enormously to attaining a more
historically accurate understanding of the real-life person of St.
Nicholas. In consequence, he is recognized globally as a
quintessential expert on the beloved 4th century bishop
and Patron Saint of Children.
following titles (primarily available only in Italian)
represent but a small sampling of Padre Gerardo’s invaluable
Leggenda di Kiev: La Traslazione Delle Reliquie di S. Nicola
Legend of Kiev: The Translation of the Relics of St. Nicholas,1980)
Nella Critica Storica
(St. Nicholas in Historical Criticism,
Nicola: Leggende e Cronache Russe
(Saint Nicholas: Legends and Russian Chronicles, 1986)
Nicola Nella Critica Storica
(St. Nicholas in Historical Criticism, 1987)
Nicola di Bari
(Saint Nicholas of Bari, 1988)
Nicholas. His Life, the Translation of His Relics and His Basilica
in Bari (English
language edition, 1994)
Nicholas: Documentary Evidence in Literature and Archeology :
Historical Criticism on His Identity
(English language edition, 1997)
Nicola di Bari (Saint
Nicholas of Bari, 1997 editon)
Nicholas: His Life, Miracles and Legends
(English language edition 2008)
Elia. Il benedettino che costruì la basilica di San Nicola
Elijah. The Benedictine Monk who Built the Basilica of Saint
Openness to the Christmas Spirit
Paul W. Smith Golf Classic (Benefiting P.A.L.) www.paulwsmithgolf.com
was 15 years old when he started his radio career in 1968 at WVMO/Monroe,
Michigan. In the 1970s, he divided his time between college and WSPD/Toledo
and later returned to the station for nearly a decade as a salesman
and afternoon drive host. A successful turn as a television morning
show host led to Smith's first morning drive show on CWA/Toledo.
In 1984, Smith moved to morning drive and to CKLW/Windsor,
Ontario for a year before moving to WJR/Detroit as a weekend host.
Within a year, Smith had added a weekday show at WABC/New York to
his duties, later moving (and commuting) to WMCA/New York while
still hosting weekends at WJR.
In 1990, Smith was hosting a noon interview show at WJR while
also working mornings (via satellite) at WWDB-FM/Philadelphia. With
the 1996 passing of longtime WJR morning host J.P. McCarthy, Smith
began a lengthy run as the station's morning host. Smith also
co-hosts Destination 313, a weekly interview show devoted to Detroit
events and entrepreneurs.
the annual Paul W. Smith Golf Classic http://www.paulwsmithgolf.com/
, Smith has raised over $4,500,000 for
the Detroit Police Athletic League.
Detroit PAL is a private, nonprofit organization that is working to
make Detroit a great place to be a kid and raise a family. In
partnership with the Detroit Police Department and community
volunteers, Detroit PAL builds character in young people through
athletic, academic, and leadership development programs.
PAL is a non-profit organization positively impacting the lives of
more than 11,000 children each year through athletic, academic and
leadership development programs. Formed through a merger of Think
Detroit and the Detroit Police Athletic League in 2006, Detroit PAL
has roots dating back to 1970.
W. Smith was formally inducted into the National Radio Hall of Fame
In addition to Detroit PAL, Paul has dedicated time on his
radio show and acted as an emcee for notable charitable causes for
the American Cancer Society's Cattle Baron's Ball, Karmanos
Cancer Institute, the Salvation Army's Bed & Bread
Program, March of Dimes March for Babies, The Parade
Company and Detroit Goodfellows.
Kocur – Ron Mann – Chris Baker
Joe Kocur Foundation For Children
around the warm glow of a campfire in 2009, ex-Detroit Red Wing, Joe
Kocur along with close friends, Ron Mann and Chris
Baker became inspired to assist needy families and local
charities. The dream the three men envisioned became a reality when
they eventually co-founded what is today known as the Joe Kocur
Foundation for Children. The Foundation’s aim is to create
family-friendly events while, at the same time, bringing together a
variety of like-minded people from the local community who share the
same spirit of giving.
Since its formation, their non-profit organization has assisted
local charities who seek to offer assistance to families in need. As
a result, the Joe Kocur Foundation for Children has proudly
supported the efforts of a number of charitable organizations, who
include: The Wings of Mercy, Team Kendal Kidz, Orchard
Children’s Service, FAR Conservatory, The Huron Valley Special
Olympics, The Thin Blue Line, The Shannon Gaber-Silverthorn
Scholarship and other charities.
In addition to helping local charities, the Foundation has likewise
aided families who have endured profound tragedies. For example, in
December, 2012 a Benefit was held for the family of Officer
Patrick O’Rourke, a West Bloomfield Police Officer who was
killed in the line of duty. Due to a tremendous outpouring of
community love, support, and generosity, the Foundation held special
hockey fund-raiser at Compuware Arena. The hockey game that featured
seven NHL Hall of Famers became a sell out; thereby raising more
than $150,000.00 for the O’Rourke Family. A true “miracle on
its inception in 2009, the Joe Kocur Foundation for Children has
raised over $500k through generosity of its sponsors and faithful
Co-Founder, Joe Kocur Foundation for Children
fans will remember "Joey"
from his memorable Detroit Red Wings days when he and close
Probert, formed a gritty duo lauded as the "Bruise
Brothers." Scrappy NHL rival, Donald
attests that Kocur actually punched cracks into his helmet during
one particularly memorable physical altercation. Distinguishing
himself as one of the most penalized players in
history, he spent 2,519 penalty minutes in the “sin bin.”
he is widely remembered for his rough-and-tumble style of play, die
hard Red Wings fans will recall that Kocur contributed crucially
important goals in both 1997 and 1998 Stanley Cup finals series. On
both occasions, Joe along with other members of the
“Winged-Wheelers” subsequently hoisted the coveted Stanley Cup.
the creation of the Foundation that now bears his name, Joe Kocur (never
considered a Lady Byng Trophy contender during his NHL career) is
happy to reveal his softer side. For,
as the former “Bruise Brother” once reflected: “For
me, the most rewarding part of our [Foundation] events is our
ability to give back to our local charities and, at the same time,
seeing the smiling faces of the families we’ve helped.”
Co-Founder, Joe Kocur Foundation for
founded Mann Made Resources (MMR) in 2008 and is the President and
CEO. MMR evolved from Mann’s long history and experience in
wireless construction and provides professional services to the
more than 15 years Mann has served his industry and community
through close relationships, personal service and expertise.
Ron and his wife Maureen believe in a strong connection and
commitment to investing back in to the community. As a
founding member of the Joe Kocur foundation for children, over half
a million dollars has been provided to the community and families in
has 2 children. He enjoys boating, skiing, all outdoor
activities and demonstrates a great love for all people
Co-Founder, Joe Kocur Foundation
owns and operates three successful restaurants: Bakers of
Milford, South Lyon Hotel and Highland's Comeback Inn.
generosity in the community earned him the honor of Citizen of the
Year in 2011 awarded by The Huron Valley Chamber of Commerce for the
communities of Milford, Highland and White Lake.
has served on the Board of Directors of the Carls Family YMCA for 6
years and as Chair of the Leadership Committee.
is the current president of the Huron Valley Chamber of Commerce and
a respected spokesman for the business and not-for-profit
organizations in the community.
participates in several community fundraising activities and is
eager to assist the development of the youth through career
development and coordinated activities in both the Huron Valley
School District and South Lyon School District.
is a co-founding member of The Joe Kocur Foundation for Children.
Love for Children –
Founder/Executive Director, Seedlings Braille Books for Children www.seedlings.org
In 1984, Debra Bonde quickly learned that
Braille materials were scarce and expensive. It was then that she set two goals: increase the availability while lowering the cost of
Braille books; and promote literacy skills by enhancing a love of reading for visually impaired children. In 1985, the first year of book production, Debra made 221 books in her basement office. By 1990, Seedlings was producing 5,000 books per year and in 2013, Seedlings produced nearly 24,000
Braille books. This growth made it necessary to move from Debra’s home office to the Bentley Center in Livonia, Michigan, and eventually to its present location on Farmington Road in Livonia. To date, Seedlings has produced over 400,000
Braille books and articles, equaling over 18 million pages of Braille.
Braille materials have opened up new worlds for thousands of children. By reaching
Braille readers in all 50 states and 75 different countries around the globe, Seedlings is able to ensure that visually impaired children have access to many of the same good books that their sighted peers enjoy. Seedlings produces both classic literature and contemporary novels and by doing so, promotes
Braille literacy. At this time, less than 20% of the 50,000 blind children in the United States are proficient in
Braille. All too often, the written word has been inaccessible to these children, and this is what she is hoping to change.
Braille books are provided at each level of development, from toddler board books to classic literature for older children. Just as sighted children learn to “read” as they are exposed to the printed word, so do visually impaired children who are exposed to the tactile page at an early age.
As a non-profit organization, Seedlings sells its books for considerably less than it costs to make them. Support is very broad based and comes from individuals, philanthropic groups, corporations and private foundations. Seedlings is not a United Way agency and does not receive any government grants. Thanks to hundreds of generous donors and dedicated volunteers, the price of Seedlings books remains far below actual production costs, averaging only $10 per book.
2014 marks the 30th anniversary of Seedlings’ commitment to producing high-quality, low-cost
Braille books and it expects to produce over 25,000 books this year. The staff and volunteers work diligently to continue to offer
Braille books at the same cost today as when it first began in Debra’s basement office. Thousands of visually impaired children now know the thrill of being transported to a different place through reading the printed word.
4 Core Values forms the acronym:
Living these St. Nicholas Institute values says: