During Commencement & Reunion Weekend in May, five graduates received the Alumni Medal, the highest honor awarded by the Alumni Association. Recipients are selected by former president of the association from nominations submitted by any alum.
Charles A. Byrne ’50
More than 60 years after attending John Carroll University, Charles Byrne still recognizes what quality education is all about.
Even before his John Carroll days, Byrne understood first-hand the concept of service, which is a cornerstone of Jesuit philosophy. He served bravely with the U.S. Marines in the Philippines and Guam during the latter part of World War II, and subsequently pursued his college degree via the G.I. Bill.
He married Josephine Ward, his classmate from Euclid Central High School, and they settled in Cleveland Heights and raised seven children. The Byrnes, who have 17 grandchildren, celebrate 61 years of marriage this year.
Byrne worked as a manufacturer’s rep for a number of companies specializing in die-cast and plastic products. At 85, he’s essentially retired, although he still maintains one client.
While pursuing his career, Byrne also maintained an ongoing commitment to the educational system on a local, state, and national level. He was a member of the Cleveland Heights-University Heights Board of Education from 1977 to 1980 and the Ohio Board of Education from 1996 to 2000. Throughout that time, he wrote numerous op-ed pieces about education reform for The Plain Dealer and other local and regional newspapers. He even launched his own community newspaper, the Heights Conservative Press, in 2005.
Byrne served for 18 years as John Carroll magazine class scribe for the class of 1950 and on the 1995 and 2005 JCU reunion committees.
Ever the savvy businessman, Byrne thinks of a John Carroll education in marketing terms.
“There’s a phrase in business that’s popular these days: value added,” he says. “John Carroll provides that. In addition to training young people for a career, the added value at John Carroll is the Jesuit dimension that trains them for life.”
James M. Mackey ’71
In the four decades since he graduated from John Carroll, James Mackey has shared his vast expertise in business and business law with his fellow alumni.
Mackey, who graduated in 1971 with a bachelor’s degree in history, earned a law degree from Cleveland State University in 1974. He practiced law at Chattman, Gaines & Stern for 25 years before assuming his current position at Walter & Haverfield, where he specializes in business law and estate planning. He’s recognized as a specialist in trust and estate planning by the Ohio Bar Association.
Since the 1970s, Mackey has channeled much of his time and professional expertise to aid John Carroll and its alumni. He was instrumental in kicking off the spring reunion program, serving three years as chair of the initial planning committee. He also served as president of the Alumni Association from 1986 to 1988 – a position that included service on the JCU Board of Directors. He also served on the presidential selection committee that resulted in the appointment of Rev. Michael J. Lavelle, S.J., in 1988.
As a member of the executive committee of the JCU Entrepreneurs Association (EA), Mackey helped provide networking and continuing education opportunities for entrepreneurs – alumni or otherwise. Although no longer on the executive committee, Mackey is an EA Master Member, which includes sponsorship of Carroll students for EA-related activities.
Beyond Carroll, Mackey has served as a board member of the local chapter of the National Hemophilia Association and the Center for Mental Retardation. He was a charter member and a four-year board member of Leadership Geauga County, a civic organization dedicated to developing current and future leaders. He’s a former president of his parish council at St. Joan of Arc Church in Chagrin Falls, Ohio, and he co-chaired the parish’s building and capital planning committee during a fundraising campaign that resulted in a $3-million family center and church renovation.
Mackey and his wife, Laura, raised four children, and coached numerous CYO programs for 17 years. They enjoy spending time with their seven grandchildren.
John W. Magnotto ’60
John Magnotto’s journey has taken him from his hometown of Farrell, Pa., to John Carroll University, where he was a history major, and ultimately to Phoenix, with numerous stops in between. Despite the miles he’s traveled and the physical distance he is from the University, his commitment to Carroll and the Jesuit philosophy is resolute.
After eight years working in sales in Cleveland, Magnotto and his wife, Lynne, moved to St. Joseph, Mich., and then Fargo, N.D., in 1973, where he opened a wholesale appliance distributorship. He bought the company three years later, then bought a second distributorship in Phoenix in 1989. He helped develop the Hjemkomst Center in Fargo and co-founded the national Independent Distributor Association in 1991.
Magnotto continued to give back. In addition to their five children, he and Lynne raised his 14-year-old sister after his parents died in 1970. During the ’80s, they opened their home to two Vietnamese boys who were brought to the U.S. by Lutheran Social Services. In the late ’80s, the Magnottos took in a young Peruvian burn victim.
Throughout the years, the Magnottos have provided spiritual and financial support to the Nativity School of San Jose, the Ursuline Nuns of Cleveland and to Padre Juan Davis, a missionary from Fargo, who has worked in Peru for many years. They have made several trips to Peru to assist Padre Davis in his work.
Inspired by Fr. Joseph O. Schell, S.J., during his college years, Magnotto helped establish the Fr. Schell Chair, which helps bring a Jesuit to John Carroll to live in a residence hall and provide spiritual guidance to students.
Magnotto, who’s immensely proud of JCU and the class of 1960, served as JCU Alumni Association secretary in 1969 and 1970 and on the 1995, 2000, and 2010 reunion committees. In 2009, he and Lynne jump-started John Carroll alumni activity in Arizona by hosting a reception at the Arizona Biltmore.
Magnotto attributes his ability to balance career, family, and community service to the support of his wife and to the values instilled in him at home and during his college years.
Patti Rosenfeld ’87
Patti Rosenfeld’s record of service is extensive in politics and the private sector. Her commitment in both arenas has taken her from her hometown of Shaker Heights, Ohio, to Oklahoma City and Washington.
Rosenfeld helped plan the 1989 presidential inaugural ceremonies for George H.W. Bush and served in the White House Office of Personnel and Political Affairs from 1990 to 1993. She worked for Ronald Kaufmann, deputy assistant for political affairs under John Sununu from 1991 to 1995. She worked on special events for Christmas in April USA, an organization that provides assistance to low-income homeowners. She also was director of special projects in the office of Oklahoma’s First Lady, Cathy Keating, and involved with the publishing of two books: Our Governors’ Mansions and In Their Name based on the Oklahoma City tragedy.
Rosenfeld serves on the board of Georgetown University Hospital and the Foundation for the National Archives. She and her husband, Ron, generously support various other organizations, including the Jewish Federation of Greater Washington, the Washington Hospital Center, and the Smithsonian.
Appointed to the JCU Board of Regents in 2006, Rosenfeld currently serves on the University’s Board of Directors. She supports two scholarship initiatives at John Carroll: the Ohio Access Initiative, which recently was renamed the John Carroll Access Initiative, which assists students from low-income families, and the Rosenfeld Communications Scholarship. She also funded the Communication Conference Room in the O’Malley Center.
Rosenfeld, who continues to draw on valuable lessons she learned at John Carroll and apply them to her various pursuits, credits Jacqueline Schmidt, Ph.D., and Joseph Miller, Ph.D., of the communications department, for encouraging her to continue her studies in the 1980s as a nontraditional student. More recently, she has been greatly influenced by the friendship and support of Rev. Robert L. Niehoff, S.J.
Robert A. Valente ’69
Robert Valente keeps a plaque on his desk that reads: “What we extend to others, we strengthen within ourselves.” Valente is founder and CEO of RAV Financial Services, a wealth-management firm that provides financial planning for individuals and families. Since 1982, he has helped people understand there’s more to wealth than just money, and there’s more to life than just wealth.
“Money is temporal, and it doesn’t provide happiness,” he says. “No matter how much people accumulate, whether it’s money or things, it’s not going to make them happy. Their spiritual quest is much more important.”
Valente’s spiritual quest has involved a combination of his philanthropic expertise with the sense of service that was instilled in him as a John Carroll student. Much of his community service has been with The Gathering Place, a local organization that provides free programs and services to support, educate, and empower people touched by cancer. He has been a member of TGP’s board of trustees and several committees, including chairman of the planned giving committee.
Valente, a member of the Magis Legacy Society at John Carroll, is the inaugural chair of the Magis Advisory Group, which invites accounting, legal, financial, insurance, and real-estate professionals to advocate for the University and help advance John Carroll’s planned-giving efforts, visibility, and reputation.
A Master Member of the JCU Entrepreneurs Association, which includes sponsorship of Carroll students for EA-related activities, Valente’s service to the University includes the JCU National Alumni Association Board from 2007 to 2009.
Valente serves on planned giving committees and advisory groups for the Cuyahoga Chapter of the American Cancer Society, University Hospitals Health System, The Cleveland Museum of Art, and The Cleveland Orchestra. His commitment to health-related organizations stems, in part, from caring for his parents in their final years.
“My family life was devoted to taking care of my parents, and making sure I reciprocated their care for me,” he says.
Additionally, two other graduates received the 2011 Campion Shield during the alumni awards dinner this past May.
Col. Michael F. Campbell ’83, USMC retired
In 1993, as a captain in the U.S. Marine Corps, Michael Campbell put himself in harm’s way in service to the people of a country halfway around the world. The gesture almost cost him his life.
By the time he graduated from John Carroll in 1983 with a bachelor’s degree in psychology, Campbell already had served four years in the Marines. He was commissioned as a second lieutenant in May 1983 and was later promoted to first lieutenant and captain. He served in Somalia as part of Operation Restore Hope beginning in December 1992.
In February 1993, during an attempt to calm the rioting in the streets of Mogadishu, Campbell approached a crowd of about 200 people who were blocking a main road. Despite his efforts to initiate a peaceful dialogue with the crowd, he took several rifle shots to the upper body that, fortunately, were deflected by protective gear. Moments later, the crowd began hurling rocks and other objects at him. He suffered numerous injuries, most notably a severely broken jaw and damage to his upper vertebrae.
As a result of the incident, Campbell was awarded the Purple Heart. It’s one of several medals and decorations he received in his 28 years of military service before retiring with the rank of colonel at the end of 2008.
Since his time in Somalia, Campbell lives with chronic pain despite numerous surgical procedures and medication. Nevertheless, he has lived an exemplary life of service – military and otherwise. During the late ’90s, while living in El Paso, Texas, he helped establish a Boy Scout troop and volunteered with a mentorship program for low-income students. Years later, while teaching at the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, Md., he volunteered for a program that assisted midshipmen who were facing disciplinary issues.
Campbell and his wife of 28 years, Michelle (’84), have two sons, Ryan and Evan. He credits the well-rounded, liberal arts education from John Carroll as the foundation that helped turn him into a military leader.
“Nothing could have prepared me better to lead Marines than a degree in psychology,” he says.
Michael A. Henry ’00
Since graduating from John Carroll in 2000 with a degree in economics, Michael Henry has been drawn to one of the most impoverished and imperiled countries in the world. During that time, he has participated in ongoing efforts to rebuild shattered lives.
Henry, a native of Chagrin Falls, Ohio, works for Cross International, a faith-based relief and development organization headquartered in Pompano Beach, Fla., which has been his home since 2007. His work involves frequent trips to Haiti and Africa to oversee Cross programs that support local ministries in their efforts to provide services to the most needy.
While at JCU, Henry found inspiration in the Jesuit commitment to service and social justice. He participated in the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults and began exploring long-term volunteer opportunities during his senior year. Henry’s encounter with Haiti began when he joined the Peace Corps and took an assignment there from 2002 to 2004. He eventually returned to Cleveland.
“I thought I had gotten it out of my system, but I found myself looking for opportunities to get back to Haiti. It just stays with you,” he says.
Henry returned in the summer of 2006, working with the International Training and Education Center for HIV/AIDS before joining Cross in November 2007. During one of his frequent trips as part of the Cross Haiti Alliance Program, Henry experienced a 7.0-magnitude earthquake in January 2010 that destroyed much of the capital city of Port-au-Prince and the surrounding region. At the time, he was on the second floor of his office building, which was one of the few structures still standing in the aftermath. He stayed in Haiti for almost two weeks to assist in rescue efforts.
More than a year after the quake, Henry – a new father as of May 2011 – works primarily from Haiti, where he continues to oversee relief efforts that include the construction of housing and the establishment of long-term care for orphaned children.
The 2011 Silver Quill, awarded annually to a class columnist of the Alumni Journal in the magazine for dedication to the role, went to Paul Hulseman ’82, former president of the Alumni Association who has been penning his well-written column since 2004.
The following is an introduction written and read by John Walsh, university editor, who introduced Hulseman before presenting him the award during the alumni awards dinner:
It’s ironic Paul Hulseman wasn’t looking forward to being the next columnist for the class of ’82 in 2003. He thought there were better people to write the column. Maybe, but he’s proven himself wrong.
Paul pens a column that flows fluidly and reads rhythmically. It’s a humorous and fun read.
And he’s successful at it. Here’s an anecdote to support that: At a recent reunion, a younger alum approached Paul and asked him if he wrote the column for the class of ’82. He asked because he said he reads it every issue. Just like a Twitter account, Paul has followers.
“I had no idea it would be this fun,” says the former all-American swimmer. “I’ve had terrific conversations with classmates. It’s been a blessing, and I look forward to it every issue.”
As a class columnist, Paul faces one challenge: to keep information flowing, which has become easier with email and Facebook. Still, Paul would like to hear from more classmates.
“People love those connections,” says the former president of the Alumni Association.
After attending Loyola Academy in Chicago, Paul was the first of his family to attend Carroll. Three of his nine siblings – Joe, Jean, and Patty – followed him to University Heights. Before moving back to Chicago in 1987, Paul met his wife, Patrice McCauley, also a Carroll grad, and University Heights native. The Hulsemans continue the Carroll tradition – two of their children have graduated, and two are enrolled presently.
“I think the world of the place,” he says.
Paul, who’s a senior VP at Solo Cup, the company his grandfather founded in 1936, wants his column to be representative of the chapel steps, where classmates had, and still have, many conversations.
“It’s a place where everybody gathers,” he says.
Well Paul, I’m sure you’re glad Blue Streaks are still convening and conversing. There’s a lot to report. JCU
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