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Celebrating 100 Years of Hope andPromise

October 11, 2023

OCTOBER 12, 2023/BALTIMORE, MD–On November 9, Catholic Charities will be celebrating 100 years of hope and promise at its Annual Celebration event at the Baltimore Marriott Waterfront Hotel. Maryland’s largest private provider of human services is commemorating a long history of helping our neighbors, and the evening will highlight that history and the future along with recognizing community partners and colleagues.

Several awards will be presented to exemplary supporters of the mission and vision of Catholic Charities. The Msgr. Arthur F. Valenzano Joyful Servant Award is given in memory of Monsignor Arthur F. Valenzano, Rector of the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary and a member of Catholic Charities Board of Trustees until his passing in September of 2015. This year’s awardee is Hal Smith who, for 35 years, served our church and the citizens of Maryland.  Hal’s passion for social justice and service were unwavering. He led Catholic Charities through growth and change as he assessed the needs of our neighbors and made the commitment to develop programs and services to meet those needs.

The Distinguished Service Award is given to an individual or group that exemplifies or significantly supports compassionate caregiving and service, has a personal commitment to the work of Catholic Charities, and demonstrates the goal of cherishing the Divine within those we serve. This year, there are two awardees—The Bunting Family and Church of the Nativity. Three generations of the Bunting family have volunteered and supported the mission and work of Catholic Charities. Their leadership, their example and their generosity have made Catholic Charities, the state of Maryland and beyond stronger. George, Mary Catherine, and Marc Bunting, among other family members, have demonstrated the power of personal commitment. The Church of the Nativity, one of the fastest growing parishes in the Archdiocese of Baltimore, whose mission is to Love God, Love Others, and Make Disciples, lives its mission in extraordinary ways. Hundreds of parishioners and their families have supported Catholic Charities by serving on the board of trustees and board committees, volunteering in programs such as My Sister’s Place Women’s Center, Christopher Place Employment Academy and Gallagher Services, hosting Catholic Charities inaugural symposium, and providing generous donations to support programs and services.

The Anne Lindsey Otenasek Youth Service Award is given to students in recognition of outstanding volunteer service with Catholic Charities. It is given in memory of Anne Lindsey Otenasek, an energetic teenage Catholic Charities volunteer and passenger on 1988 Pan American Flight 103, to honor and perpetuate her spirit and personal commitment to helping others. This year’s recipient of the award is the Cristo Rey Jesuit High School, whose commitment through volunteering and service has been exceptional. Cristo Rey’s mission is to empower Baltimore youth to succeed in college, career, and life, and its students have been strong teammates of Catholic Charities’ endeavors. More than 200 students have interned  in Catholic Charities programs by serving as partners in providing services to children at city Head Start sites and by accompanying elders at St. Elizabeth’s Nursing and Rehabilitation Center. The students of Cristo Rey have shown their commitment to leading change in our community and the world by their compassionate service and dedication to learning.

“We are truly humbled and honored to be strengthened, supported and accompanied by such amazing partners,” said Bill McCarthy, executive director of Catholic Charities. “ Together with those recognized tonight and thousands of others, lives are improved, and our community is made stronger. “

“Catholic Charities of Baltimore truly depends on the generosity and commitment of supporters around Maryland,” noted Jocabel Michel-Reyes, chief development officer. “This year’s honorees have shown their kindness in extraordinary ways. We are so grateful.”

In addition to our five awardees, Catholic Charities will honor six employees with its Mission in Action Award for extraordinary examples of commitment and living the agency’s values to love, serve, teach and work for justice . These awardees include David Bena, clinic director Cumberland, Villa Maria Behavioral Health; Allen Graves, head cook, St. Elizabeth’s Nursing and Rehabilitation Center; Emmanuel Hamilton, program security assistant, Weinberg Housing and Resource Center; Mary Ann McCloskey: human resources talent acquisition partner; Jan Pennington, service coordinator, Reister’s View and Reister’s Clearing senior communities; and Becky Stein, human resources business partner, Family Services division.

The Annual Celebration on November 9 will include a cocktail hour, dinner and program highlighting the awardees and the agency’s centennial. Tickets can be purchased online at




Catholic Charities of Baltimore celebrates 100 years of improving the lives of Marylanders in need. Established in 1923, inspiration came from the direction of Bishop Carroll in 1792 that one-third of parish revenue would be provided for relief of the poor. Today, 100 years stronger, the organization is Maryland’s largest private provider of human services, with more than 80 programs in 200 locations. Catholic Charities focuses on the key causes of Achieving Independence, Welcoming New Neighbors, Empowering Careers, Supporting Children & Families, Healing Trauma & Addiction and Aging with Dignity. Inspired by the gospel mandates to love, serve, and teach, Catholic Charities is committed to a Maryland where each person has the opportunity to reach his or her God-given potential.


Media Contact

Andy Wayne
Director of Communications
667-600-2008 (O)
410-499-2764 (M)
[email protected]

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