WTU Elects New Board Chair, Celebrates 40 Years

HNP Communications Around the Province

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Washington Theological Union kicked off its 40th anniversary celebration recently in an event attended by Provincial Minister John O’Connor, OFM, Russel Murray, OFM, and Gregory Jakubowicz, OFM.

Following the Nov. 17 reception, the board of trustees, of which John is a member, elected a new chair.

The Rev. Frank S. Donio, SAC, a WTU graduate, was elected chair of the WTU board. He replaces the Very Rev. John Welch, O.Carm. Fr. Donio, a member of the board since 2002 and chair of WTU’s Development Committee, will serve a two-year term. He is director of formation and holds provincial, national and international leadership positions for the Pallottine Fathers and Brothers, and the Union of Catholic Apostolate.

The anniversary reception, attended by more than 50 people, took place at the Croatian Embassy. Faculty members, along with Fr. John Burkhard, WTU president, and the WTU board had a chance to meet many WTU donors and friends.

Will Heaton of WTU’s communications department said that Fr. Burkhard spoke at the reception, along with outgoing chairman Welch, and Barbara Patoaka, WTU alumna and newly-elected trustee.

12-3-08-WTU-LGIn a Thanksgiving e-letter, President Burkhard shared his gratitude: “At this national time of giving thanks, I wanted to share how thankful I am for you and each person who makes up our WTU community. Your dedication and commitment to the Union is such a blessing.”

He continued: “In addition, we are all especially grateful for our 10-year re-accreditation and for the successful beginning of the new doctorate of ministry in Christian spirituality program.”

Additional details about this event are available on the school’s Web site.

Shown in photo above are John O’Connor, center, with Justin Biase, Croation chief of mission. In rear photo are WTU staff members Gregory Jakubowicz, OFM and Russel Murray, OFM.