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Veritas Award 1997

Excellence in Early Childhood Education
Sister Mary Kathleen MaLarky, O.P. ‘60

Almost all of Sister Mary Kathleen’s religious life has been spent with 3, 4, 5 and 6 year olds.  She was truly Early Childhood Education before it became the popular term of today.

Sister’s professional education at Caldwell College and Fairfield University prepared her for her unique teaching assignments.  Her greatest educational adventure was to design and name a new program at Sacred Heart School, Lyndhurst, New Jersey. The thrust of this program was dictated by the social climate in the 1980s which often required the working parents.  The need in Lyndhurst and surrounding communities was to care for little ones before school began and after school ended. Sister Mary Kathleen became the Director of this program in 1983, which she named “Small Blessings.”

Sister Mary Kathleen said the program “was established for parents seeking a caring, secure climate for their child’s first experience in school.”  She accepted the challenge with the Dominican ideal to praise God, to teach and to bless His little ones.

Sister Mary Kathleen had been a primary teacher in Sacred Heart, Lyndhurst as well as St. John the Apostle, Clark; and St. Elizabeth’s, Linden; before returning to Lyndhurst to initiate Small Blessings.  Having grown up in Bridgeport, Connecticut, it is also one of her great joys in life to say she had been a student, then teacher, then principal in Blessed Sacrament School in Bridgeport, Connecticut.

Sister Mary Kathleen enjoys an excellent reputation in the Dominican Community, the local community and the Archdiocese of Newark as a creative progressive educator in the field of Early Childhood Education.  To this end, her teaching abilities were recognized by the Archdiocese of Newark in 1995. Sister spreads joy wherever she goes. She calls herself the ‘last leaf on the tree’ – referring to the fact she is the last of the Dominican Sisters to serve in Sacred Heart – but what a leaf!

Excellence in Corporate Management
Patricia A. Peck ‘72

Upon graduating from Caldwell College, Patricia worked as a sales administrator for Rowlands Sales in Hazleton, Pennsylvania.  In 1978, she accepted a position with F.W. Woolworth Corporation, a Fortune 500 company with over $6 billion in sales.

Patricia is currently Vice President for Human Resources at Foot Locker, Inc, the successor to Woolworth.  Beginning as a corporate accountant and working in public affairs before she transferred to Human Resources in 1983, she held a variety of positions before being promoted to Vice President in 1992.

Patricia completed the Executive Development Program of Cornell University, Ithaca, New York in 1991 and is a Certified Compensation Professional.  She is a member of the New York Personnel Management Association, the Society for Human Resource Professionals, and the New York and American Compensation Associations.

She was a member of the Caldwell College Alumni Board and, in 1995, was appointed to the College Board of Trustees, where she served on the Development Committee.  In addition to hosting alumnae receptions in New York, she has participated in the Career Planning and Job Transition Seminars and was a member of the Capital Campaign Steering Committee.

A community-minded individual, Patricia is extremely active in her parish, St. David the King, Princeton Junction, New Jersey.  She serves as a Parish Trustee, Finance Committee member and Liturgy Committee member and participates as a lector, Eucharistic Minister and usher.  Her willingness to give to others has involved her also as a catechist in the Confirmation Preparation Program.

Excellence in Hospital Administration
Mary Anne Willson ‘62

Mary Anne Willson brings almost 30 years of experience in healthcare administration to her role as Vice President, Non-acute Care Services at Bon Secours Health System Inc.  She leads system-wide operational and leadership initiatives related to Assisted Living Facilities, Home Care and Hospice, Housing, Nursing Homes, Physician Practice Services, and system-wide nursing leadership initiatives.  This combination of service lines enables a broad understanding of the role of multi-faceted initiatives supporting acute care services within the health system as we move through the new millennium.

Non-acute Care Services crosses eight state lines and represents revenues of $308M which represents 11% of the total revenue within the system.  Bon Secours Health System, Inc. based in Marriottsville, Maryland is a $2.7 billion dollar not-for-profit Catholic health system that owns, manages, or joint ventures 19 acute care, 7 long term care, 6 assisted living facilities along with independent living and other ambulatory facilities, primarily on the East Coast.  Bon Secours Health System consists of more than 27,000 caregivers helping people in 13 communities in nine states. Its vision is to be a leader in Catholic health ministry reaching beyond tradition to liberate people’s potential and improve the communities it serves.

Prior to joining Bon Secours, Ms. Willson was President and Chief Executive Officer of Kerman Hospital, an affiliate of the University of Maryland Medical System in Baltimore, Maryland, Vice President of Operations at Highland Hospital in Rochester, New York, and Director of Planning at the Medical University of South Carolina in Charleston, South Carolina.  She received her Masters in Healthcare Administration degree from Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond, Virginia. In addition to a B.A. in Biology from Caldwell, Mary Anne has advanced degrees in Education and Biology from Georgetown University, Washington, D.C.

Mary Anne has attained the status of Fellow in the American College of Healthcare Executives and participates on non-acute care committees for the Catholic Health Association, St. Louis, Missouri and Mercy Housing, Denver, Colorado.  Additionally, she is active within the Baltimore community and at her parish in Baltimore.