Catholic Diocese of Spokane, Washington



From the

Official News Magazine of the Diocese of Spokane

Eric Meisfjord, Editor
P.O. Box 48, Spokane WA 99210
(509) 358-7340; FAX: (509) 358-7302


Nazareth Guild Board member honored by NCEA

the Inland Register

(From the November 21, 2013 edition of the Inland Register)

Michael Patterson, founding Board member of the Nazareth Guild, was honored with the St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Award from the National Catholic Educational Association (NCEA) last month in Washington, D.C. (IR photo from the NCEA)

With more than 350 supporters enthusiastically applauding, five individuals received the St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Award from the National Catholic Educational Association (NCEA) during the 23rd annual Seton Awards Gala Monday, Oct. 7 at the Mayflower Renaissance Hotel in Washington, D.C.

The Seton Award is NCEA’s highest honor to those providing significant personal and professional contributions to Catholic education.

Christian Brother Robert Bimonte, NCEA president, presented the awards, which were preceded by brief video tributes. Bishop Blase Cupich, chairman of the NCEA board of directors, offered the invocation.

Among those honored was Michael Patterson, Bainbridge Island, Wash., a member of the Spokane Diocese’s Nazareth Guild.

Patterson is a Catholic-educated lawyer who also helped form the Napa Institute for Catholic Thought, whose mission is to help Catholic leaders face the challenges posed in today’s emerging secular society, including those affecting the education of our youth.

“The Nazareth Guild Board members join me in offering heartfelt congratulations to Michael A. Patterson on receiving the National Catholic Educational Association (NCEA) Seton Award,” said Bishop Cupich. “The Seton Award is given by the NCEA to individuals who have made outstanding contributions to the well-being of our nation’s youth and to Catholic education. It is simply the highest honor given by Catholic educators and I was proud as the Chair of NCEA to be present for the award ceremony in Washington, D.C.

“Mr. Patterson has been a longtime supporter of the Fulcrum Foundation, an organization incorporated in 2002 for the purpose of raising funds in the Archdiocese of Seattle to ensure the excellence and accessibility of Catholic schools, especially for families in need. Currently, he serves as a founding Board member of our similarly focused effort, the Nazareth Guild. The Guild has raised over $1.5 million in its first two years. Happily, $780,000 in grants were distributed last year, and the Guild anticipates that it will be able to award over $600,000 in this year for tuition assistance, teacher enrichment, technology upgrades and special projects.

“All of this is due to the dedication and generosity of good people like Michael Patterson,” said Bishop Cupich, “and so as the Nazareth Guild salutes him on receiving the NCEA Seton Award, we take pride in knowing that one of our own has been nationally recognized for building up our Catholic schools in Washington State.”

The award is named in honor of St. Elizabeth Ann Seton (1774-1821), the first native-born American saint. The award is a bronze-colored medallion with the image of Mother Seton in profile, circled by the words NCEA Elizabeth Ann Seton Award. It is placed on a wide red ribbon and worn around the neck.


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