Scholarship Dinner to Honor Susan Saint James, GE’s Bill Conaty & Fairfield’s Rev. Lawrence Carroll

News Story: April 30, 2007

CBS News’ “The Early Show” Weatherman Dave Price to Serve as Master of Ceremonies

Sacred Heart University will host its 18th Annual Discovery Awards and Scholarship Dinner on Wednesday, May 2nd, at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Old Greenwich.

Each year, the black-tie gala honors notable individuals while raising funds for student scholarships at Sacred Heart University. This year’s Discovery Award honorees include actress and community activist Susan Saint Jamesand Fairfield resident Bill Conaty, the senior vice president of Corporate Human Resources at GE.

Saint James, known for her title roles on the hit television series McMillan and Wife and Kate & Allie, earned 10 Emmy nominations throughout her acting career. She has been active in the Special Olympics for 35 years and has served on the board of the Connecticut Special Olympics since 1983.

Conaty spent his entire career at General Electric. A Fairfield resident and a SHU Trustee since 1994, he sustained a key partnership between GE and SHU, introducing numerous GE best practices and providing strategic resources that have influenced continued growth and development for the University.

Reverend Lawrence J. Carroll, the pastor of Fairfield’s St. Pius X Parish, will receive the Curtis Medal of Honor. Prior to his present assignment, he served at parishes in Trumbull, Greenwich, Easton, Stratford and Brookfield. He also enjoyed a long ministry at his alma mater, Notre Dame High School, as a teacher, spiritual director and assistant principal. 

Dave Price, weatherman and a feature reporter for CBS News' The Early Show, will be the master of ceremonies for the evening. Event chairs are Sacred Heart University Trustees Mark E. Freitas, president & CEO of Frank Crystal & Company; Linda McMahon, CEO of World Wrestling Entertainment; and Bill Mitchell, vice chairman of Mitchells of Westport and Richards of Greenwich.

The gala event begins with a reception at 6:00 p.m. The presentation of awards will begin at 7:15 p.m., with dinner to follow.

SHU’s Discovery Award invites the community to recognize and celebrate the gifts of caring and accomplished people—those who embody the tradition of the University in their lives. They represent a wide diversity of professions but hold in common a passion for excellence and a devotion to their fellow citizens. Each is truly an educator showing by example the inestimable value of learning, leadership and service.

The Bishop Walter W. Curtis Medal of Honor is named for second Bishop of the Diocese of Bridgeport, who founded Sacred Heart University in 1963. The University first presented this singular honor, to its founding father, in 1967. The Medal of Honor identifies exemplary members of the community who are living models of the Bishop’s own clarity of vision and generosity of spirit.

Last year, the Discovery Dinner raised more than $500,000 for financial assistance to deserving scholars.

Sponsorship opportunities are available. Individual tickets are $500. All proceeds will benefit the University’s Scholarship Fund.