The 2022 Fairfield Awards Dinner Raises Over $1.25 Million for Scholarships

The 2022 Fairfield Awards Dinner Raises Over $1.25 Million for Scholarships

Pictured from left to right: Rev. Gerry R. Blaszczak, S.J.; Trish Comey Preston ’80; John Berisford, P'21,'20; Lori Berisford, P'21,'20; University President Mark R. Nemec, PhD; Kassandra Almanzar '23; Frank J. Carroll III '89; Adrienne A. Johnson ’91; Maureen Errity Bujno ’90; and Michael G. Archbold ’82.

More than 600 alumni, parents, students, and friends of the University gathered at Cipriani 42nd Street in New York City and raised more than $1.25 million to support student scholarships while honoring exemplary members of the Fairfield community.

"[As] much as the University has given me, I know the Fairfield student experience today is even greater, with all the extraordinary growth going on at the school. That is why tonight is so important, because one of the main goals for this dinner is to help make this incredible Fairfield experience accessible to a new generation of students."

— Maureen Errity Bujno ’90, Alumni Service Award Honoree

On Wednesday, April 20, 2022, the Fairfield Awards Dinner, Fairfield University’s flagship fundraising event for scholarship, took place at the renowned Cipriani 42nd Street in New York City, in-person for the first time since 2019. More than 600 Fairfield alumni, parents, faculty, staff, students, and friends gathered to recognize honorees for their professional achievements, outstanding leadership, and volunteer commitment to Fairfield, as well as to raise funds for student scholarships. This generous community, along with some who were unable to attend, raised more than $1.25 million through table sponsorships, tickets, and fundraising to support student scholarships—making it the most successful fundraising dinner in the last seven years. Since its inception in 1988, supporters of this annual dinner have contributed more than $20 million toward scholarships.

Scholarship recipient Kassandra Almanzar ’23, a nursing major and public health minor, received warm and enthusiastic applause from event guests after she shared her story, her struggles with overcoming self-doubt, and how the nursing program at Fairfield has helped strengthen her character and Jesuit values.

“As the first in my family to pursue nursing, I didn’t know what to expect. At Fairfield, I did know that I had to take advantage of each opportunity my educational experience would provide," Almanzar said in her remarks. “Committing myself to the nursing program strengthened my character, and taught me many lessons about cura personalis." She concluded her speech by encouraging guests struggling with self-doubt to take a leap of faith as she did, assuring them, “the first step will be the hardest, but so worth it.”

The Awards Dinner also annually recognizes members of the University community who exemplify Jesuit values in their communities, careers, and commitment to Fairfield.

This year’s honorees were: Michael G. Archbold '82, former CEO and current board member of The Council for Inclusive Capitalism with The Vatican, and former CEO of GNC; Maureen Errity Bujno '90, audit & assurance managing director and governance leader of the Center for Board Effectiveness at Deloitte & Touche LLP; Rev. Gerry R. Blaszczak, S.J., special assistant to the President and alumni chaplain; and John and Lori Berisford, P’21,’20, president of S&P Global Ratings and president and board chair of Sphere of CT, respectively. During the event, special recognition was given to the late George F. Keane ’51, founder and former president of Commonfund and former director of the United Negro College Fund.

“Wanting to give back to a University that has given me so much seems natural.” Maureen Bujno said during her award acceptance speech. “And, as much as the University has given me, I know the Fairfield student experience today is even greater, with all the extraordinary growth going on at the school. That is why tonight is so important, because one of the main goals for this dinner is to help make this incredible Fairfield experience accessible to a new generation of students. Giving the opportunity to share in the life-changing experiences that I and so many of you value so dearly.”

The night was truly a celebration of service, leadership, scholarship, inclusive excellence, and making a Jesuit education accessible to all communities.

Learn more about the Fairfield Awards Dinner here. Couldn't attend the dinner but would like to donate to scholarships at Fairfield? Show your support here.

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Last modified: 04-22-22 10:49 AM

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