Dinner for Education to celebrate past, future

A generational theme will mark the 40th annual Archbishop’s Dinner for Education Sept. 21 – starting with chairpersons Denise and Tate Fitzgerald of St. Wenceslaus Parish in Omaha.

Tate’s mother and father, Barb and Bill Fitzgerald of St. Margaret Mary Parish in Omaha, chaired the first dinner in 1977.

"We’re excited to bring a new generation to the event," said Kaitlyn Maloney, a Stewardship and Development officer with the archdiocese.

The dinner at the Embassy Suites in La Vista honors educators and raises scholarship money for Catholic schools. Archbishop George J. Lucas will attend the event, which includes a 6 p.m. social hour, 7 p.m. dinner and program.

Denise Fitzgerald said Catholic education is a passion for the Fitzgeralds, and "it means so much" to support and help organize a dinner that honors educators and helps families financially make the choice of a Catholic school.

The generational theme doesn’t stop with the Fitzgeralds. This year’s honorary chairpersons, Phyllis and Les Lawless of St. Robert Bellarmine Parish in Omaha, asked their daughters – Susan, Molly and Kristy – to host a party for their friends who have children in Catholic schools, to help spread the word about the dinner’s importance.

Susan and Buck Heim of St. Wenceslaus Parish in Omaha held the party at their home in June, with help from Kristy Gustafson and Molly and Chris Roth, all of St. Vincent de Paul Parish in Omaha.

The party will pick up again with the dinner, where eight teachers and administrators will be honored (for more details see ad on Page 32). Proceeds from the event will provide a $5,000 gift to each honoree and fund scholarships for families in need, administered by the Children’s Scholarship Fund of Omaha.

Tickets are $125 each, or $60 for people under age 35. For more information, or to order tickets online, go to, or contact Janet Griffin at 402-827-3764 or

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