Donor Spotlight

Madeline Bialecki

Madeline Bialecki ’82 CLAS, ’93 MA 

Spanning from her time on campus as an undergraduate student, working as a coordinator at the now Charles Widger School of Law and then as graduate student, Madeline Bialecki ’82 CLAS, ’93 MA credits Villanova for introducing her to the lifelong friends that have “shaped her life.”

As a first-generation college student hailing from Detroit, Madeline says her involvement at Villanova enriched her life in a multitude of ways. International school trips instilled in her an appreciation and love of learning about other cultures, and her career in non-profit management was inspired by the Rev. T. Shawn Tracey, OSA, who served as the Director of Campus Ministry during her time on campus. “From the moment I walked on the Villanova campus, I felt I had entered holy ground, and I still feel that way,” she said. “I was nurtured and supported by Villanova with abundant generosity through scholarships, as well as work and travel opportunities,” she said.

So, when she moved back to Michigan six years ago and didn’t know many people, Madeline knew she could rely on her strong Villanova connections to ease her transition. “I reached out to the Villanova University Club of Michigan because I knew our shared experience of Villanova would provide common ground,” she said. From golf outings to game watches, to participating in the St. Thomas of Villanova Day of Service, her involvement with the Club has consistently grow over the years, and today she serves as the Club President.

Professionally, Madeline has had a successful career in the non-profit sector and even spent four years in voluntary service in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. Over the years, she has held leadership roles including Director of Cabrini Mission Corps, Executive Director of Delaware County Literacy Council and Director of Development and Marketing at Mercy Education Project. Currently, Madeline holds the role of Executive Director of The Lake House, a cancer support center in St. Clair Shores, Michigan.

In addition to the non-profits she has served, Madeline also generously and abundantly supports the University. “I support Villanova with my time and money because Villanova has enriched my life in more ways than I can imagine,” she said. “My whole life has been shaped by Villanova, and I give back however I can.”

 

John Sturgeon

John Sturgeon ’09 VSB

While he was a student at Villanova, John Sturgeon ’09 VSB was continually impressed by the theme of community present at the University. Fortunately, he was able to remain involved with the Villanova community even after graduation through the Villanova University Club of Chicago.

Sturgeon joined the Club in 2012 and increased his involvement in 2017 when he became Club president. According to Sturgeon, the Club strives to keep Chicago alumni and surrounding family members connected to what is going on around campus and organizes a wide variety of events including service outings, basketball game watches, fundraisers, University speaker events and happy hours.

“Our Club is made up of people of all ages and is always growing, which keeps things fun,” he said. “I love staying connected to the school and continuing to be a part of the community here in Chicago.”

Sturgeon says he is proud of what the University stands for and strives to be, with each member of campus taking an active and supportive role in fostering the sense of community that keeps so many Villanovans engaged with the University long after they graduate.

“Whether we were studying together, having fun, or serving others, people looked out for each other,” he said.

After graduating from Villanova, Sturgeon earned a JD from Valparaiso School of Law in 2012. He is currently a senior associate attorney at Rusin & Maciorowski, a worker’s compensation defense firm. Aside from connecting Chicago-area Villanovans through the Club, he enjoys spending time with his fiancé, Marie, fine dining, golfing, keeping up with entertainment and following Chicago sports and—of course—Villanova Basketball.

 

Kendell Mahanna

Kendell Mahanna '06 CLAS

Kendell Mahanna ’06 CLAS knew from the moment she stepped on Villanova’s campus during Candidates Weekend back in 2002 that she had found her home.

Originally from Connecticut, Kendell received her bachelor’s degree in Chemistry from Villanova and then followed her passion for food and received her master’s degree in Food Science from the University of Illinois. She continued her journey west to Texas for an R&D position at PepsiCo, a company at which she has proudly held roles in innovation development, brand stewardship and global R&D program management over the past 10 years.

When Kendell first moved to Texas, she said that finding her Villanova family was a top priority—and integral to her adjustment there. She soon became an active part of the Dallas-Fort Worth Alumni Club, starting first as a member and rising in rank to the president of the Club. “Through the Villanova Dallas-Fort Worth Club, I have found some of my best friends who traveled with me from Dallas to not one, but two national championship games!” she said.

Kendell is also a loyal donor who hopes that giving back to her alma mater helps advance the University and support students in need, so that they have access to a Villanova education. “I donate financially to Villanova to give back to the University that gave me so much,” she said.

She said that while Candidates’ Day was the start of her Villanova journey, it was the big moments—formals, basketball games, trips to Philadelphia—and even more so the small ones, such as coffee at Holy Grounds between Inorganic Chemistry and Calculus freshman year and car chats while driving to campus senior year—that helped to shape who she is today. “I can’t point to a specific moment or event of that weekend, but I knew then that Villanova would be a part of me forever,” Kendell said.

 

brady_profile

Lynda ’90 VSB and Bob ’89 VSB, ’91 G.S. Brady

For some, running a successful home-building business while raising a family of six children, might leave very little time for anything else. But for Lynda and Bob Brady, sharing their gifts with others is a part of what it means to be a success.

As a student athlete at Villanova, Bob received his undergraduate and graduate degrees from VSB while setting 17 individual school records as a Four Year Starter and GTE Academic All American on the Villanova Football Team.  He also is a member of the Villanova Hall of Fame with the honor of having his jersey retired (#8).  
 
Currently Bob is president and owner of Keystone Homes in Bloomington, Illinois, which provides custom new home construction, remodeling and real estate investment services. Lynda is also a VSB graduate, and an active owner and partner in Keystone Homes.

The Villanova commitment to service and the Augustinian values they received at Villanova inspire Bob and Lynda to look for ways to give back to others. The Bradys are members of the President’s Club, Midwest Regional Campaign Committee and the Varsity Club. They have generously supported the University and most recently the West End Zone Project which will provide exciting new facilities for Villanova Football. The Bradys are also active in many non-profit charities in their community having built six St. Jude’s Homes for the St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital, raised over $600,000 for their local Community Cancer Center, chaired The Grape Soirée for Easter Seals, and were spotlighted on the TV show “Extreme Makeover Home Edition” building a new home for a family in need. They donated their time, materials and expertise as well as garnered support from others in the local building community. “There is nothing more rewarding than giving back of your time, treasure and talent in St. Augustine’s fashion.” notes Bob Brady.

 

Kerry Cooley Bruggemann

Kerry Cooley Bruggemann '06 COE

Villanova University graduates go on to make an impact, to ignite change, to be greater. Kerry Cooley Bruggemann ’06 COE is no exception. The Minnesota native, inspired by Villanova’s academic rigor, commitment to service and overall spirit, has committed herself to the University that helped shape the successful engineer and volunteer she is today. 

Bruggemann is a managing principal with Michaud Cooley Erickson, a Minneapolis-St. Paul based consulting engineering firm. Over the years, she has developed an extensive background in the design of HVAC and plumbing systems for public, commercial, industrial, office and retail building projects. In February, Bruggemann was named the 2015 Young Engineer of the Year for the state of Minnesota. 

Today, Kerry works to preserve and share the University’s unique heritage and personality. Since graduation, she has made enhancing the Villanova alumni community in the Midwest a priority. Bruggemann is member of the Villanova University Alumni Association Board of Directors and serves on the Young Alumni Campaign Committee. As an active member of the Minnesota alumni community, she will once again host the Minnesota New Student Send-Off in August. 

Villanova University is in the midst of one of the most exciting periods in its history – the University’s first provost has been appointed, tremendous progress has been made through the capital campaign, and Villanova will be making a move toward becoming a doctoral/research university in the coming year. Bruggemann calls upon her fellow alumni to be part of the momentum. “Giving back to Villanova, in any way, benefits all of us in the end. In part, we are the architects of our students’ success, serving as guides as our University moves forward into the national spotlight”.

 

Jan and Paul J. Varello '65 COE

Jan and Paul J. Varello ’65 COE

Jan and Paul J. Varello ’65 COE are helping to chart the future of the College of Engineering with theirhistoric $13.5 million commitment - the largest in the College of Engineering’s history and second largest single gift in the history of Villanova University.

Paul, a Houston resident and the CEO of Sterling Construction Company Inc., credits much of his success to the experience and education he received at Villanova, “I learned to value the Augustinian tradition and the call to do something in service to others. The larger lessons I learned at Villanova have stayed with me my whole life”. The Civil Engineering major was dedicated to his studies and worked summers and during breaks to afford tuition while enrolled at the University. It was through Villanova that Varello learned diligence and determination and gained an appreciation for the opportunities he had at the University.

Since graduation, Varello has supported Villanova annually. Today, the Varello’s endowed fund will be used at the dean’s discretion, providing the College of Engineering perpetual support and will be used wisely to ensure Villanova Engineering remains a leader in academic innovation and research – reinforcing  the College’s rightful place on the national stage.

Over the years, Paul has remained an active member of the Villanova alumni community, hosting events and attending them when his schedule permits. He will return to Villanova in June for Reunion when he will celebrate his 50th Reunion. 

 

Molly Schreiber

Molly Schreiber '11 CLAS

When you ask Molly Schreiber ’11 CLAS why she is involved with Villanova, she responds without hesitation: education.

Molly, a senior associate at the corporate and crisis communications firm, Reputation Partners LLC, based in Chicago, attributes much of her current personal and professional success to the strong academic foundation established at Villanova University. As a recent graduate, her involvement in the campaign, For the Greater Great ®: The Villanova Campaign to Ignite Change, goes without question. “Villanova afforded me incredible opportunities, provided me with lifelong friends and mentors and exposed me to countless formative experiences. I feel indebted to the University and its staff, and I feel honored to be a part of Villanova’s ongoing effort to raise the bar for academic excellence.”

As an honors student, a reporter for the Villanovan and a member of the Villanova Women’s Club Lacrosse team, Schreiber capitalized on a tremendous array of academic, athletic and philanthropic activities. Since graduation, Molly has made her involvement in Villanova University a priority. Through her work with the Midwest Campaign Committee and her membership in the Young Alumni Circle, Molly hopes to inspire other young alumni to give back to the institution that has afforded them so much. “Whether through volunteering time or contributions toward our campaign goals, every gift matters”.

 

JoeCampolo

Joe Campolo '90 VSB

Joe Campolo '90 has been an active member of the Villanova community from the moment he stepped on campus. Over the years, his passion for and dedication to his school has grown.

Today, Joe is the co-founder, partner and president of Arbor Investment Management LLC – a food and beverage private equity firm based in Chicago. In addition, he is chairman of Gold Standard Baking, LLC, Fieldbrook Foods Corporation and Pita Bread Factory, Ltd.

Amid his activities at Arbor and his busy family life, Joe and his wife, Angela, have remained active within the Villanova network. The Campolos are very involved in many aspects of Villanova, but have been particularly committed to the soccer program. In fact, in a dedication ceremony scheduled for October 4, the recently renovated soccer game field will be named Campolo Field in honor of his gift.

"Attending Villanova was one of the most pivotal events in my life.  I believe it's important to give back to the University that has been so instrumental in shaping me into who I've become today." Villanova is grateful to have Joe on its team – he is the Midwest Campaign Committee chair and serves on several other groups, including the President’s Leadership Circle and the Campaign Executive Committee. 

 

 

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Contact Us

LeighAnn Bridges, Executive Director of Regional Development

Leigh Ann Bridges '04, '06
Executive Director of Regional Development
212-792-4263
leighann.bridges@villanova.edu