Congratulations to this year’s Alumni Award recipients, Sister Rosemarie Freitag, Joseph T. Mancuso, Esq., Celeste Gudas’76 and Paul Hemsley ’71.
Sister Rosemarie Freitag
The Faculty Award is being given to Sister Rosemarie Freitag in recognition of her 32 years of service at Bishop Grimes. Sister Rosemarie earned her Bachelor’s degree in Education from the College of St. Rose in 1962 and her Master’s degree from Cortland State in 1974.
A member of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet, Sister Rosemarie was a member of the faculty at five different parish schools throughout New York prior to completing her tenure at Bishop Grimes. She came to Bishop Grimes as a member of the Religion faculty teaching in this role for twelve years before being named Assistant Principal. Sister Rosemarie served as the Assistant Principal under Msgr. George Sheehan for two years before moving to the Library as the Information Center Assistant. She has served in this capacity for the last eighteen years.
Sister Rosemarie shares that her favorite part about working at Bishop Grimes is, “to watch the young men and women grow both spiritually and developmentally.”
Congratulations to Sister Rosemarie Freitag as she celebrates her Diamond jubilee this year, marking her sixtieth year in religious life.
Joseph T. Mancuso, Esq.
Joseph T. Mancuso is being presented with the Distinguished Citizen of the Year award. This award recognizes an individual for his outstanding contributions to the school, community, and society. Joe is a Partner in the law firm of Hancock Estabrook, LLP.
Over the last seven years, Joe has displayed his dedication to Bishop Grimes by participating as an active member of the Advisory Board of Trustees and Board of Trustees, serving as the Vice Chair and Secretary. Joe’s contributions to the board have been innumerable. He authored all of the legal documents and contracts which enabled Bishop Grimes to become an independent entity. The documents he developed have become the standard for all the high schools in the diocese. Chair of the BG Board of Trustees, Hank Fust shares, “His advice and moral support to me as Bishop Grimes chair throughout the reformation of BG has been invaluable.”
In addition to his position on the board, Joe and his wife Kristin are active members in the Bishop Grimes Booster Club. He volunteers frequently at various sporting events and fundraisers throughout the year and was the leading force in the addition of the baseball scoreboard and the signage on the baseball and softball fields. He was also the first Coby the Cobra, our mascot!
Joe and Kristin are also the parents of Christopher (Class of 2016) and this year’s Salutatorian, Kendall, and has attended and cheered on the Cobras at an incalculable number of BG basketball, baseball, volleyball and softball games over the past eight years.
Celeste Gudas ’76
The Distinguished Alumni Award recognizes an alumna who has excelled in her field and attained outstanding success. Congratulations to this year’s recipient, Celeste Gudas, class of 1976.
Celeste is the founder and CEO of 24 Seven, Inc., a strategic talent management partner to the most prominent companies in the Fashion, Retail, Beauty, Marketing, and Advertising sectors globally. The company has grown to now include twelve locations in the US and two locations internationally, working with recognizable and diverse companies including, Juicy Couture, Motorola, Levi’s, Johnson & Johnson, Disney, J.Crew, Sony and more.
The success of 24 Seven Inc. is attributed to Celeste’s dedication and management of 24 Seven’s team, many of whom are women. As a working mother of three, Celeste is personally committed to furthering the prominence of executive level women; not only within the company, but within the industries the company serves.
Most recently Celeste has been recognized by Glassdoor for International Women’s Day a Spotlight on Women CEOs and named the 8th Largest Women-Owned Company by Crain’s NY Business 2016. She is actively engaged with her community spearheading diversity initiatives, such as: YMA Fashion Scholarship Fund, Enterprising Women, The Committee of 200, and many more.
When asked about her secret to success, she shares, “The secret of success at any point in your career is to find something you really care about doing and pursue it relentlessly.”
Paul Hemsley ’71
The Lifetime Spirit Award recognizes an alumnus who has demonstrated dedication to Bishop Grimes over the years through personal commitment, contribution and leadership. This year’s recipient, Paul Hemsley, class of 1971 has been invested as a member of the second graduating class.
A student from 1967-1971, Paul was extremely involved. He was a member of boy’s choral, the National Honor Society, Student Council, Junior Prom Committee, Senior Ball Chairman and a class officer. He participated on the Golf and Lacrosse teams. After graduation Paul attended The College at Brockport State University of New York. Paul returned as a member of the faculty and to coach at Bishop Grimes in 1977. The following academic year he became the Assistant Athletic Director. Paul became the Athletic Director in 1988 and worked in this capacity until 1999. Paul continued at Bishop Grimes as the Science Chair, teaching biology until he retired in 2016. This was also his last spring coaching Softball and the fall of 2017 was his last season as the Varsity Women’s Soccer coach. Paul continues to stay actively engaged as a member of the Hall of Fame committee and attends games and events regularly.
Assistant Principal, Pat Kinne ’98, shares, “As a student and colleague of Paul Hemsley, I am indebted to him for the many life lessons that he taught me. In the Biology classroom, I remember being fascinated by the labs and stories that Paul told. After all, what teenage student can forget scouring through an owl pellet to piece together a rat skeleton?! When I think of Paul Hemsley though, the biggest influence he had on my life was that he encouraged and equipped me to grow and mature in my faith. I consider myself blessed that I had the opportunity to return to Bishop Grimes to work alongside Paul for over a decade. Paul’s commitment to the mission, ministry, and students of Bishop Grimes was and still remains, unquestionable. I am proud to call him my teacher, a mentor, a colleague, and a friend.”