St. Bernard Prep
St. Bernard Preparatory School celebrated the accomplishments of its graduating seniors in grand style at its 114th Commencement Exercised held on Sunday, May 26. With sounds from the Alabama Pipes and Drums Corps filling the air, a capacity crowd filled the Abbey Church as thirty-six seniors completed their high school course of studies and were offered college scholarships amounting to just under three million dollars.
Father Joel Martin opened the ceremony with a word of welcome to the parents and families of the graduates. Special recognition was given to the seniors who had enrolled as seventh graders and were now completing six years of education at St. Bernard. Also recognized were several families who had several sons and daughters who graduated from St. Bernard in previous years.
School Chaplain Bede Marcy gave the invocation and led the National Anthem.
St. Bernard honored Robert L. Blevins and William J. Breslin III as distinguished alumni during the commencement ceremony.
Blevins enrolled at St. Bernard College in 1976 where he completed his two years of basic studies. Transferring to the University of Alabama , he completed his bachelor’s degree in 1981. In 1985, he founded the Texican Natural Gas Company. Under his leadership the company has become the largest independently-owned natural gas marketing company in the United States serving municipalities, hospitals, and commercial customers in the management of gas systems.
William J. Breslin, a native of Pennsylvania, enrolled in St. Bernard College where he earned his Bachelor’s Degree in 1971. Working in the insurance industry, he received the top J.D. Power Award for Service-in-Insurance as well as recognition by Business Week for his work as a World -wide service provider. He is the founder of Wenonah Consulting.
Sister Cecilia C. Zamobini, MC , who serves as Director of the Catholic Center of Concern for the Diocese of Birmingham in Alabama was the keynote speaker. Sister Cecilia encouraged the students that, no matter road they decided to travel, they should always give it their full and complete attention. “Be your best,” she said, “always living high Christian values.”
Abbot Cletus Meagher, Chairman of the Board; Father Joel Martin, president, and John Tekulve, headmaster, presented the salutatorian award to Jerrica Crawford. The valedictorian award went to Siohban Russell and the general excellence award was presented to John Schneider.
After the presentation of diplomas, Siohban Russell delivered the valedictory address, followed by the singing of the alma mater.
Music for the occasion was led by organist, Rebecca Whited; and the Alabama Pipes and Drums. A reception was held following the ceremony in the dining hall.