I want to thank all who participated to help make our first-ever Donor Appreciation Event a huge success last night.  More than 50 Annual Fund donors attended along with selected students who wonderfully represented the St. Mary Programs supported by the Annual Fund.

The purpose of the event was to extend thanks to those who generously donated and make the 2013/2014 Annual Fund Campaign a huge success; raising more than $50.0 for the school. Approximately $30.0 of the funds provided tuition assistance to families who financially qualified via FACTS Grant and Aid application and evaluation process. $2.0 provided yearbooks for every student in the school and another $2.0 completed the funding needed for the 8th grade annual trip to Camp Don Lee. The remainder of the funds were used to support the S.T.E.M. Programs as well as for the addition of Lego Robotics to the 3rd through 5th grades.

Led by Mrs. Westermark, violin students (Emily Cox (4), Alex Schultz (5), Molly Kiser (5) and Bailey Folan (8)) entertained guests during arrival and seating and a trumpet fanfare by Nathan Nichols (5), Giovanni Leone (SMS 2014 Grad) and Mr. Purcell was followed by Amazing Grace to begin the evening’s presentations.

Athletic Director, Tony Viollis, spoke about the continued development of the Falcon Athletic program and introduced Kasey Kiser (7) and Madison Swart (7) who read their contest winning essays outlining their experiences as SMS athletes.

IT Facilitator, Daniel Scullion, talked to the donor group about the rapid advancements in technology and the challenges in both keeping up with and ahead of those advancements in terms of student instruction and resources available to the school.

In addition to hands-on demos of IPADS, laptops & robotics, the guests were invited to view a student visual art display, illustrated 5th grade Figurative Language Projects and a photo/art presentation from the 145th Birthday of St. Mary School historic walking tour and celebration of the Boundary Oak.

Closing comments from Tim Breslin, Director of Stewardship and Advancement for the Diocese of Raleigh stressed the importance of a strong advancement effort and the absolute need for a successful annual fund to ensure the future of our school.

This year’s annual fund mailing will go out this week in time for end of year giving, however, donations made through June 30, 2015 will apply to the 2014/2015 Campaign.

Again, many, many thanks to all of the volunteers, especially the students, who helped me with this event – and the generous donors who support us.


JoAnn Daley