In January of 2017, the first regional chapter of the national Gay & Lesbian Alumni Association for Notre Dame and Saint Mary’s was created. This group is called the GALA ND/SMC Club of New York City. Their mission is to bring together the NYC metro area LGBT alums and friends from Notre Dame & St Mary’s in fellowship and to provide a forum for social events, community service, professional networking, and student support.
The NYC Club is lead by a team of alumni volunteers whose goal is to provide programming that is fun, interesting and promotes camaraderie in their community.
The NYC Club even has its own webpage. It will be the “go to” spot containing all the activities and events hosted by the club. Check it out at: NYC GALA ND/SMC Club of NYC.
GALA-ND/SMC, the Gay and Lesbian Alumni/ae of the University of Notre Dame and Saint Mary’s College, is proud to announce the winner of the 2017 Thomas A. Dooley Award. This year’s award recipient is Kristen Matha SMC ’03.
“It is our pleasure to recognize Kristen with this award” says GALA Chair Jack Bergen. “The work she has undertaken at both the NCAA and at her alma mater Saint Mary’s College to strive for greater inclusion and diversity exemplifies the true spirit our organization’s key values and of the courage displayed by Dr. Dooley, for whom the award is named.”
Also being honored during the event with the Award for Distinguished Academic Achievement is Joseph Pequigney ND ’44 for his pioneering work in LGBTQ studies.
Full information on the award recipients can be found at: 2017 Dooley Awards.
The Dooley Award ceremony will be held during a Weekend Celebration April 28/29, 2017 in South Bend. There will be a Welcome Event Friday evening April 28th, a Panel Discussion on Saturday April 29th, an After-Party following the Award Ceremony Saturday evening and a Morning Prayer Service at the Grotto on Sunday April 30th.
For the complete schedule of the weekend activities, go to: LGBT Leadership Celebration Weekend. Exact time and location, including event registration, will be announced by March 1st.
The December 2016 Newsletter was published on December 19, 2016. The focus of the newsletter was a “Year In Review” highlighting the many events, changes and accomplishments over the prior 12 months affecting our community. The key topics are shown below. To view the full publication go to: December 2016 Newsletter.
- Alumni Engagement Events
- New York City
- Student Support
- LGBT Student Scholarship
- LGBT Student Scholarship Benefits
- Membership Options
- Official Recognition With The NDAA
- Major Events On Campus & Across the Nation
Over 30 members of the GALA ND/SMC NYC Community got together for a Christmas Party on a cold, blistery evening. A gay and festive time was had by all. Through everyone’s generous participation in the raffle we raised over $600 for the LGBT Student Scholarship Fund. For more fun pictures of the event go to: New York City Area Events.
After two days for getting deals – Black Friday and Cyber Monday –#GivingTuesday is a day for giving back. #GivingTuesday is a movement, built by people around the world, to celebrate giving of all kinds. This year it falls on November 29, 2016.
Join fellow alums and friends on #GivingTuesday by making a contribution to GALA ND/SMC. For more information and how to donate, go to GALA ND/SMC #GivingTuesday.
The holiday season has arrived! Celebrate with other alums and friends at GALA’s NYC Christmas Party on Thursday December 15th from 6:00pm to 8:00pm. The party is hosted by Kevin Romero ’03 and his husband Philip Maziarz in a beautiful lounge at their building. Drinks and light appetizers will be served while being entertained by festive Christmas music. A few “surprise” Christmas gifts will be available for raffle. Attendees are asked for a $25 contribution, and all net proceeds will be donated to the LGBT Student Scholarship Fund. To register, go to: GALA Christmas Party Registration (prior registration is encouraged but not necessary). The event will take place at 50 Riverside Blvd between 61st & 62nd (not Riverside Drive) just a 10 minute walk from Lincoln Center.
The November 2016 Newsletter was published on November 13th and contains a number of interesting pieces. To view the full publication go to: November 2016 Newsletter.
- 2017 Dooley Award Nominations
- Alumni Socials in NYC and On Campus
- Second Annual NYC Alumni Fall Weekend Including Stories & Pictures From the LGBT Pilgrimage of Mercy & Student Scholarship Benefit
- Camp Pride Experience as Shared by Student Elsie Ngomi ND ‘18
- New Ways Ministry Blog Highlighting Jack Bergen’s Plea for Acceptance of LGBT Catholics as Reported in the Observer
GALA ND/SMC held our 2nd Annual NYC Alumni Fall Weekend in early October, 2016. Over the course of the weekend, alumni and friends were treated to a variety of events ranging from a small dinner at a quiet Italian Bistro, a fun game-watch in Hells Kitchen to the two signature events. For a recap of the weekend including pictures, go to NYC Events, LGBT Pilgrimage of Mercy and 2016 NYC Student Scholarship Benefit.
GALA ND/SMC is happy to sponsor our Second Annual New York City Alumni Fall Weekend from September 30 to October 2, 2016. This year there will be a number of planned events for GALA members and friends to enjoy, as well as other activities happening around the city for the ND/Syracuse football weekend.
Featured events will be the LGBT Student Scholarship Benefit on Sunday afternoon October 2nd at Phil Donahue’s apartment as well as a Pilgrimage of Mercy earlier on Sunday morning at 11:00am.
Come to one, two, or all of the events planned over the weekend! For a complete calendar of events and more information, go to: Second Annual New York City Alumni Fall Weekend
DONATE HERE: To help LGBT students by donating to the Student Scholarship Fund to go: Make a Gift
At the end of June 2016, a group of almost 50 Notre Dame and St. Mary’s alums and friends attending a fundraising event in Malibu to benefit the GALA ND/SMC LGBT Student Scholarship. Special guest speakers included ND SPB Bryan Ricketts ’18, current scholarship recipient Sam Chou ’18 and Hindsey Horvath ’04. For pics of the event go to: LGBT Student Scholarship Benefit – June 2016 – Malibu, CA
The May 2016 Newsletter has just been published and contains a number of interesting pieces. To view the full publication go to: May 2016 Newsletter.
- New York City LGBT Alumni Social May 12, 2016
- Alumni Reunion Weekend June 2-5, 2016
- LGBT Student Scholarship Benefit in Malibu, CA June 26, 2015
- 2016/2017 LGBT Student Scholarship Winners
- 2016 Officer Elections
- GALA Student Board Member Connor Hayes Wins Award
On November 12, 2015 GALA held a fundraising event in NYC for the LGBT student scholarship fund. The event was attended by over 80 alums and friends and raised over $17,000. Everyone who attended was so engaged in the evening and thrilled to participate in helping out the scholarship fund.
In addition to Phil Donahue ’57 (who hosted the event) giving an impassioned speech, a video was shown of four current Notre Dame/St Mary’s LGBT students. One of the students was the recipient of the first scholarship. All of the students showed remarkable poise and confidence as they told their stories.
For more info and pictures, go to: NYC Scholarship Fundraising Event
The fundraiser also received very positive attention on campus. The event was featured on the front page of the student newspaper The Observer with the heading: GALA ND/SMC Hosts Fundraiser for LGBQ Scholarships.
One June 26, 2015 the US Supreme Court handed down a decision that gives same-sex couple the right to marry in all 50 states. The vote was narrow – 5-4 – but Kennedy’s majority opinion was clear and firm: “The court now holds that same-sex couples may exercise the fundamental right to marry.”
The ruling will put an end to same-sex marriage bans in the 14 states that still maintain them, and provide an exclamation point for breathtaking changes in the nation’s social norms in recent years.
ND grad and GALA member Greg Bourke and his husband Michael Deleon were lead plaintiff’s in the Kentucky case that was part of the decision. We all thank Greg and Michael for their efforts to help bring about this change. For more information on their story go to: Huffington Post Article.
Greg Bourke (right) and his family.