Eighteen members of the faculty and staff celebrated anniversaries in Catholic education during the 2013-14 school year, but perhaps none more impressive than the 40 years Charlene Wheeler ‘65 has dedicated to her alma mater.
Her relationship with the CJ community actually dates back more than 50 years when Charlene started as a freshman at Julienne High School. Since that time, she has proudly been a cheerleader, alumna, parent (to graduates Mollie ‘90 and Mark ‘94), and valued employee.
“Throughout my time at CJ, Charlene has filled a number of professional roles: counselor, principal, mentor, parent of two students, testing coordinator, and post secondary coordinator to name a few,” said math teacher Ann Meyers ‘76. “Charlene is always informed, prepared, and willing to help move the school forward.”
Doing just that, Charlene is fondly remembered for stepping up to take over as interim principal during the 1998-99 school year. “Charlene, needless to say, did an excellent job, as she always does,” said math department chair Nancy Dever.
Charlene has been characterized by her colleagues as a friend, a role model, a leader, an advocate, a class act, and a spirited fan. Most notably, she has helped countless young people discover their talents and maximize their opportunities for success as a longtime counselor and the director of the Guidance office.
“While she has been an outstanding colleague for all of us and an inspiring mentor for many, her impact can best be seen in her passionate focus on generations of CJ students,” said Dan Meixner ‘84, president.
“Chaminade Julienne is — and will remain — a better Catholic educational community because Charlene Wheeler has been here,” he said.
Celebrating 30 years is Tim Dillon.The veteran educator has spent his entire teaching career in the CJ religion department where he currently serves as chair. Tim teaches both freshmen and seniors, but owns the distinction of having taught every religion course offered during his tenure.
In December 2013, Tim received his doctorate in theology from the University of Dayton’s Department of Religious Studies. He and his wife Mary Ellen have two children, both graduates of CJ: Brendan ‘10 and Kateri ‘12.
OTHERS CELEBRATING MILESTONES INCLUDE:
Cindy Budde, 20 years of service
Cindy began working in the development office and is currently in the Welcome Center serving as Assistant to the President. Cindy and her husband Steve ‘69 are parents of three CJ graduates: Mike ‘97, Julia ‘02 and Laura ‘02.
Lois Mann, 20 years of service
Lois works in the Welcome Center as Assistant to the Principal. Her children, Curtis ‘98 and Keri ‘03, are both graduates of CJ. She joins her longtime colleagues Janet Lasley and Marilyn McCrate in retirement this summer.
Angela Ruffolo, 20 years of service
All 20 years of Angela’s teaching career have been spent in the social studies department at CJ. She is actively involved in student life as faculty moderator of Student Council and organizer of the annual senior trip to Washington, D.C.
Cheryl Smith, 20 years of service
Cheryl joined the staff in 1995, founded the Students of Diversity Club in 1999, and currently serves as Accounts Receivable and Tuition Coordinator in the business office. She has two sons, Dwayne and Troy ‘98.
Claire Davis, 15 years of service
Claire began working at CJ in the Welcome Center in 1999. She currently serves as Assistant Director of Ministry & Service. She and her husband Jim have five children, all of whom graduated from CJ: James ’95, Amanda ’97, Emily ’98, Kip ’01, and Hannah ’03.
Judi MacLeod '88, 15 years of service
Judi is department chair of the Cuvilly program. She earned her National Teaching Certification in 2010 and received the first annual Founders’ Award this school year. The award honors an adult member of the CJ community who best represents the spirit of Blessed William Joseph Chaminade and Saint Julie Billiart. Her daughter Jenny is a member of the graduating Class of 2014.
Dan Meixner '84, 15 years of service
Dan has served in both the development office and as President of his alma mater. He and his classmates are celebrating their 30th reunion this year during Reunion Weekend 2014. His daughters Cari ‘12 and Carly ‘13 are both graduates of CJ.
Mick Mominee, 15 years of service
Mick has spent his entire teaching career in the religion department at CJ. He recently graduated with a doctorate from the University of Cincinnati’s Urban Educational Leadership program in May 2013. Mick is married to alumna Nicole LaSelle ‘96.
Jeanne Spitzig '75, 15 years of service
Jeanne began working in the development office and is currently in the Welcome Center as Assistant to the Director of Admissions. She and her husband Ken ‘75 have five children, all of whom attended CJ: Kenny ’02; Denny ’03, Lisa ’05, John ’08 and George ’10.
Marcus Colvin, 10 years of service
Marcus joined the faculty to teach social studies in 2004 after working as a student-teacher at CJ. After he was named head varsity football coach in 2011, the Eagles finished the season as regional runners-up. He has amassed a 21-13 record with two playoff appearances in three seasons and was selected to the coaching staff for the 2014 OHSFCA North-South Classic.
Mike Kelly, 10 years of service
Mike has served as a baseball coach and English teacher since returning to his alma mater in 2005. He has been a full-time faculty member since 2011.
Angela Mason '81, 10 years of service
Angela joined the staff as an administrative assistant at her alma mater in 2004. In addition to working in the Office of Student Services, she also serves as Spirit Committee moderator and helps staff many CJ events and activities. Angela and her husband Lonnie are current CJ parents and parents of alumni: Brenna ‘09, Logan ‘11, Sarah ‘16, Cole ‘16 and Riley ‘18.
Jim Sparrow, 10 years of service
Jim has taught social studies and religion at CJ. He also serves as moderator of the National Honor Society and the highly successful Quiz Bowl team, which has won league championships seven of the last eight years. His son Benjamin is a member of the Class of 2016.
Amanda Ooten, 5 years of service
Amanda Ooten serves as a Project Lead the Way biomedical sciences teacher and co-chair of the science department. She has also coached tennis. Amanda and her husband Mike are expecting their first child this summer.
Joe Whatley, 5 years of service
Joe serves his alma mater as Director of Choirs. During the 2010-11 school year, he founded Vega, the school’s premier pop a cappella group. In four years, Vega has released two highly regarded studio albums and competed in the International Championships of High School A Cappella, taking second place in 2014.