The Mother McAuley/Saint Xavier Academy Alumnae Association will induct six women into the McAuley Hall of Honor on Sunday, April 30. Alumnae, friends and supporters of the school are invited to attend the event which will be held on the school’s campus, located at 3737 W. 99th Street in Chicago.
The event will begin with Mass at 10:00 a.m. in the auditorium and include a ceremony inducting the six women into McAuley Hall. A champagne brunch will take place in the student lounge immediately after the induction. Tickets to the brunch cost $50 per person and may be purchased in advance by clicking here.
Established in 2013, McAuley Hall is a permanent installation at the school, serving to educate and inspire current and future students and all who visit the school. Inductees into the Hall were chosen from more than 100 nominations. This year’s inductees include a renowned artist, scientist, business leaders and philanthropist.
“These six women infuse Catherine’s vision of Mercy and compassion into their work and exemplify how a McAuley education challenges and empowers young women to rise to the top of their profession and vocation,” says Peggy Evans Rourke ’76, director of alumnae relations and development. “It is fitting that we gather at McAuley – the place where their integrity, confidence and drive for excellence was first engrained – to honor each of them, as well as our history and heritage.”
This year’s inductees into McAuley Hall include:
Kathy Roche Napleton ’68, a former educator who embodies the values and vision of Catherine McAuley. Kathy is an advocate for Catholic grade school education and support services. As a family volunteer and philanthropist, she has devoted countless hours supporting local organizations and parishes, including Circle of Friends, The Illinois Club for Catholic Women, and several Catholic high schools in the Chicago area.
Renée Popovits ’82, a nationally-recognized thought leader, strategist and policy advocate in the behavioral health field, is founder and principal attorney of the law firm, Popovits Law Group. She lectures extensively on ethics, parity, confidentiality and managed care issues. She serves on the boards and committees of several organizations, including the Catholic Charities Legal Advisory Committee and the Illinois Opioid Crisis Response Advisory Council. Francis Cardinal George awarded her with the Compassion in Action award. Renée is currently working on a book describing her watercolor paintings.
Dr. Bernadette Ryan ’76, an accomplished scientist, business owner and author. In 2000, she cofounded, Experimur, a company dedicated to conducting research for the development and safety evaluation of pharmaceutical and biotechnology based medicines. During the company’s 2007 expansion, Bernadette oversaw the design and construction of the 54,000 square foot state-of-the-art research facility and labs. Bernadette also is a diplomate of the American Board of Toxicology.
Kathy Wendt Sudeikis ’64, a leader in the travel industry for more than 45 years. She has served as president and CEO of The American Society of Travel Agents, earning her induction into its Hall of Fame and the honor of being named Travel Agent of the Year. Since 2004, Travel + Leisure magazine has named her a Top Travel Agent. Kathy appears in Travel Agent Magazine as one of the 100 Most Powerful Women in Travel. In 2015, Kathy was given a Lifetime Achievement Award by Travel Weekly Magazine.
Marita Carey Sullivan ’65, the former Chief Executive Officer and now the Chairman of the Board of JMG Financial Group Ltd., an independent wealth management firm. In 2008 and 2009 Marita was named as one of The 50 Distinguished Women in Wealth Management by Wealth Management Magazine. She is a member of The Chicago Network and Illinois CPA Society. Marita serves on the Board of Almost Home Kids, a charity that provides transitional care to children with complicated health needs.
Jean Morman Unsworth, a renowned artist, lecturer, author and founder of the Mother McAuley art department. She also is a professor emerita of fine arts at Loyola University. Her extensive portfolio of media includes sculptures, stained glass, fabric, photography, paints, drawing and metal. Most recently she endowed the Jean Morman Unsworth Art Expressways Gallery at Loyola University Museum of Art (LUMA).