Gala nets more than $250,000 for school

By Amanda Coronado     10/24/2017

Santa Margarita Catholic High School President Andy Sulick and Principal Ray Dunne welcomed 522 guests to campus on Saturday, Sept. 30 to celebrate the school’s 30th anniversary during the Blue and Gold 2017 Gala. The school first opened its doors in September of 1987. Preliminary fundraising results from the gala show that approximately $257,500 was raised, which includes $130,850 for tuition assistance.  

“We are here tonight because our Lord Jesus Christ has blessed this campus for more than 30 years and tonight we give thanks,” said Sulick, a member of the school’s charter class of 1991.  

As the guests arrived, they received a special welcome by talented student performers that included a steel drum band, string quartet and student vocalist Alec Melosini crooning Sinatra-era tunes. 

Among the guests were current and alumni parents, grandparents, alumni, faculty, staff, friends from area Catholic schools and parishes, as well as other Santa Margarita supporters. The school welcomed back families from its early years, including stakeholders Susan and Dr. Burr McKeehan of Monarch Beach, Claudia and Randy Redwitz of San Juan Capistrano, Rosemary and Rand Sperry of Orange, Susan and Tim Strader of Newport Beach and Sherry and Dr. Richard Van Meter of Ladera Ranch.  

“To see this amazing campus come to fruition has been such a blessing,” said Susan Strader, who along with her husband Tim attended the gala with their children Patrick Strader, a 1994 graduate of the school, and his wife Dana. “It’s hard to believe it has been 30 years. Santa Margarita instilled the same values we as parents wanted our children to have. The opportunity for every student to explore their full potential continues to be at the heart of this school.” 

Rev. Steve Sallot, the vicar general and moderator of the Curia for the Diocese of Orange, offered his appreciation to the school. 

“I want to thank you tonight for being such a great anchor of our faith here in South Orange County,” he said. “You are a great gift to our Church.”