Kailey O'Connor - Coach Leroy Cantrell Celebrates 25 Years

 
Kailey O'Connor - Coach Leroy Cantrell Celebrates 25 Years
THE MAGAZINE OF MOUNT ST. MARY CATHOLIC HIGH SCHOOL                   FALL 2020

                                                                Kailey
                                                               O’Connor
                                                               2020 Valedictorian

Coach Leroy Cantrell          MSM Alum Finds                     The Craft of
 Celebrates 25 Years       Passion for Filmmaking               Rosary Making
       page 4                         page 12                        page 26
Kailey O'Connor - Coach Leroy Cantrell Celebrates 25 Years
Mount St. Mary Catholic High School
                                               Board of Trustees 2020-2021

                                               Dan Carsey                               Jason Miller
                                               Chairperson of the Board                 Owner
                                               Attorney and Shareholder                 McCorkle Truck Line, Inc.
                                               Hall, Estill, Hardwick, Gable,
                                               Golden & Nelson, P.C.                    Teresa Moisant
                                                                                        Owner
                                               James Biscone                            Moisant Promotional Products
                                               Vice Chairperson of the Board            MSM Alum ‘67
                                               Attorney, Johnson & Biscone, P.A.
                                               MSM Alum ‘09                             Janis Mollman
                                                                                        Community Volunteer
                                               Reverend Rex Arnold                      MSM Alum ‘78
                                               Pastor
                                               St. John Nepomuk Catholic Church         Hugh O’Hara
                                               Yukon, OK                                President
                                                                                        Maguire O’Hara Construction
                                               Peter Evans
                                               Business Development Coordinator,        Jerry Peace
                                               Public Safety & Community Initiatives    Retired Vice President, Integrated
                                               Moore Norman Technology Center           Resource Planning & Development
                                               MSM Alum ‘03                             Oklahoma Gas & Electric Company

                                               Stacey Hollopeter                        Maria Scaperlanda
                                               Director of Business Development         Author, Journalist, Blogger
                                               i2E Inc.
                                                                                        Paige Williams Shepherd
                                               David Johnson                            Director of Tourism
                                               Business Manager                         Chickasaw Nation
                                               Archdiocese of Oklahoma City             MSM Alum ’03

                                               Vi Le                                    Sister Rose Marie Tresp, RSM
                                               Regional Vice President                  Director of Justice – Sisters of Mercy
                                               General Counsel                          Belmont, NC
                                               Mercy Health Oklahoma Communities

                                               The Magazine of Mount St. Mary Catholic High School
                                               is produced annually. To request additional copies, inquire about
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                                               Mount St. Mary Catholic High School
Continued from Front Cover
                                               2801 S. Shartel Avenue / Oklahoma City, OK 73109
Sisters of Mercy on the front steps of Mount
                                               (405) 631-8865 / jstiles@mountstmary.org
St. Mary Catholic High School
Kailey O'Connor - Coach Leroy Cantrell Celebrates 25 Years
Principal’s Letter

W                             hen we talk
                              about The Mount
                              Way, we are not
                              just talking in
                              generalities. We are
              talking about a Catholic community,
              all working towards one goal –
              getting our children to heaven – and
              it begins with our families and
              educators.
                                                                  from the students and parents through
                                                                  several surveys. In order to help our
                                                                  families, we needed to know what they
                                                                  were feeling and how they were doing
                                                                  through all this mess. Sometimes the truth
                                                                  was brutal, but more often, the praise and
                                                                  appreciation were uplifting and kept our
                                                                  journey of discovery faithful all for the sake
                                                                  of our students. I greatly admire our staff
                                                                  for their willingness to be open to criticism,
                                                                  but more so, to be open to change. That is
              Never has it been more evident of our
                                                                  what ministering is…to answer the call no
              teachers’ commitment to our students and
                                                                  matter the circumstances or the obstacles
              our families than these last three months
                                                                  and to keep hope alive!
              of distance learning. Our entire world was
              suddenly thrown into a chaotic, distressing         So many things have been learned
              state. Nothing but confusion and turmoil            during these last few months we’ve
              seemed to fill the news reports and social          experienced, but for me, two things that
              media sites. As it became more and more             I hold onto the most are the gratitude
              apparent our beloved school community               and admiration I have for our staff. Their
              would not resume classes after spring               leadership and guidance to our students
              break, our faculty and staff willingly faced        and families during those moments of
              the challenge head-on, with a resolute              crisis exhibited a deep and sincere love
              attitude to continue to teach and serve             for Catholic education. Our teachers
              with dependability and strength. And trust          remained loyal to the end and are ready
              me when I say….it was not easy. We were             to prepare for what may come next. No
              confused. We were frustrated. We were               one knows what that will look like, but you
              grieving the loss of our entire Mount family.       can be certain that at The Mount, our staff
                                                                  is committed to the spiritual formation of
              Our school year ended like no other, but
                                                                  our students, to guide these young folks
              I am so very proud of our students, our
                                                                  to be faith-filled disciples of Christ in the
              families, and our staff for their resilience
                                                                  spirit of mercy. We remain committed
              and trust. We knew if we were going to
                                                                  to strengthening and elevating our
              make it through those difficult times, we,
                                                                  professional learning community. We are
              the MSM staff, needed to hold true to our
                                                                  steadfast and determined in discovering
              promise….to serve, to lead, and to live
                                                                  new heights through these challenges,
              mercy…now more than ever. During those
                                                                  and we are constant in our intentions to
              two-and-a-half months of only seeing our
                                                                  be prepared. For it is through our faith in
              students through the screen of a laptop
                                                                  God and strength together as one Mount
              or phone (or not seeing them at all), our
                                                                  community we are able to persevere and
              teachers committed themselves to not
                                                                  be better for what tomorrow may bring.
              only continue teaching but to also learn
              more and more about distance learning
              programs. As we became somewhat
              accustomed to the “new normal,” to do
              better and be better, we relied on input            Talita DeNegri, Principal

Mount St. Mary Catholic High School Administration & Advancement

Talita Córdova ’80 DeNegri, Principal / Whitney Faires, Assistant Principal / Rachel Dowell, Dean of Curriculum & Instruction /
Fr. Alex Kroll, School Chaplain / Chris Crosbie, Director of Athletics / Charley Finsel, Business Manager / Chris Stiles, Director of Advancement /
Diane McGlashan ’71 Wilson, Director of Admissions / Jessica Stiles, Director of Communications & Marketing / Tonya Averyt, Director of Special Events /
Joy Groth ’98 Murphy, Director of Constituent Relations / Kim Pickens, Director of Advancement Operations

                                                                                                                                                           3
Kailey O'Connor - Coach Leroy Cantrell Celebrates 25 Years
Living
    The
    Mount
    Way Coach Leroy Cantrell
        Celebrates 25 Years

4
Kailey O'Connor - Coach Leroy Cantrell Celebrates 25 Years
Faculty

«           In the Fall of 2019, Leroy Cantrell found himself walking across an
            Oklahoma City Archdiocesan stage to accept a silver lapel pin. He
walked side by side with his long-time friend and colleague, Brian Boeckman, in
recognition of their 25 years in Catholic education—all of them at MSM. In the
audience, peers not only from The Mount, but all surrounding Catholic schools
stood in applause acknowledging exactly what this little round piece of metal
represented: commitment, excellence and dedication to a job well done.

In 1988, the Cantrell family moved to          In a reflection of other memories, Sister          Claes Nobel Educator of Distinction by the
south Oklahoma City. Unbeknownst to            Diane Koorie is recalled. Cantrell reflects,       National Society of High School Scholars
Cantrell, he would find himself next door      “We attended a seminar in the early 2000s          and receiving Catholic School Educator of
to long-time friend and future colleague,      where we learned ‘to have a comfortable            the Year nomination that very same year.
Talita DeNegri. Cantrell explains, “The high   cup of tea’ from a display of Sister               Cantrell’s resume boasts numerous tennis
school she worked with was looking for a       MacAuley (foundress of The Sisters of              and basketball coaching awards from state
computer teacher and tennis coach. Both        Mercy).” Cantrell further explains, “This          championship wins to All State coaching
of those are in my wheelhouse so I applied     means that when you are stressed and               awards throughout his 25 year career.
and a quarter of century later—here I am.”     having a difficult time in life, take some
                                                                                                  In 2012, Mount St. Mary challenged
                                               time and ‘have a comfortable cup of tea.’
During those 25 years, Cantrell watched                                                           themselves to be aggressive with
                                               We actually brought this idea back with
his two kids grow up, graduate from MSM                                                           technology updates where every
                                               us to an in-service staff meeting. I can still
and begin their own careers. His daughter,                                                        classroom had streaming capabilities and
                                               see the teacups and sugar cubes strewn
Mallory Tecmire ’06, is now on staff in                                                           every student a Chromebook. Cantrell
                                               along the meeting tables and the small
the counseling office, doubling as a high                                                         was at the helm of the initiative: “We
                                               doll-like cup I held. The staff shared in
school counselor and college advisor.                                                             introduced the DCI program: Digital
                                               fellowship and powerful, prayerful likeness
Connor Cantrell ‘00 is an attorney in                                                             Curriculum Integration. The school had
                                               that day. It’s a method I still cherish to this
Denver, Colorado, practicing litigation law.                                                      a complete overhaul to our 116-year-old
                                               day and when I see Sister Koorie I ask,
“My children brag about their education                                                           building and every four years we receive
                                               ‘Have you had a comfortable cup of tea?’”
at The Mount. Connor loves to engage                                                              updates. We pride ourselves in staying on
in theology arguments and Mallory has          “When I retrieve these memories, they are          the cutting edge of technology.”
made her home here, just as I have.            what I call ‘Catholic-like’,” Cantrell explains,
                                                                                                  Cantrell now serves Mount St. Mary as a
Teaching and coaching both my kids was a       “I am Methodist, but that takes nothing
                                                                                                  part-time faculty member. “I just have a
rewarding experience and something I am        away from my understanding of ‘The
                                                                                                  hard time leaving my forever home. It’s
very proud of,” Cantrell adds.                 Mount Way’.” When asked to expound the
                                                                                                  funny, because I wasn’t looking for it,
                                               term, Cantrell quickly answered, “When I
Other memories include fun charades                                                               but I’m certainly glad I found it! That pin
                                               interact with our students, I draw attention
and games played in pep rallies over the                                                          I received last year isn’t just a pin—it’s
                                               to the MSM crest on their shirts and say,
decades. When Cantrell was new to the                                                             recognition from your peers that you are
                                               ‘That’s what you represent. THAT is the
staff he was conned into a banana-eating                                                          doing something right.”
                                               Mount Way.’ And they do it. You see it in
contest and a “Kiss the Bulldog” act. “This
                                               their actions. From the way they behave,           Leroy has been married to his beautiful
school is a special place and we want to
                                               play, act—our kids are respectful and hard-        wife, Cindy for 42 years. Between their
entertain.” Cantrell continues, “I want the
                                               working. I see it in the hallways, I see it in     two children, Mallory and Connor, they
kids to laugh at me and have fun. The kids
                                               the classrooms, even on the tennis court.”         have four grandchildren: Declan (5), Bailey
appreciate you more when you show your
                                               Cantrell continues, “We are teaching these         (3), Ivy (2) and Wyatt (4 months). He will
goofy side and I’ve certainly done that—
                                               kids to take the trip—a trip to heaven.” The       continue to serve on The Mount staff as
kissing a dog for football homecoming
                                               coach has represented MSM well in “The             part-time faculty.
proves my point!”
                                               Mount Way” by being named the 2006

                                                                                                                                                5
Kailey O'Connor - Coach Leroy Cantrell Celebrates 25 Years
downstairs and posing as one of her              The music group was known as one of the
                                                   parents. So after the phone call, I went to      best and hardest working in the state. “He
                                                   the stairwell and waited on her. When I          was also so supportive of my job here at
                                                   made eye contact I said, ‘I enjoyed talking      The Mount. He would play at our annual
                                                   to you.’ Needless to say, she got the point      gala, Magic at The Mount. Everyone
                                                   and she did not dismiss early that day,“ she     would dance and have such a good time.
                                                   laughed.                                         He was such a fun man and definitely a
                                                                                                    people person.” Reflecting on her loss, she
                                                   Mrs. Burdg has also witnessed the change
                                                                                                    says, “Losing him was the hardest thing
                                                   in generations— in particular, confidence
                                                                                                    in my life. Coming back to work after my
                                                   levels of young students. “Freshmen used
                                                                                                    bereavement lightened my burden. The
                                                   to come in shy and almost embarrassed
                                                                                                    support was greatly received.”
                                                   to ask questions. Now they walk in
                                                   completely assertive and proud.” In the          Mrs. Burdg is a parishioner at Our Lady
                                                   MSM front office, you are bound to meet          of Perpetual Help Cathedral in Oklahoma
                                                   many fun and interesting people. Mrs.            City and serves as a Sacristan and
                                                   Burdg confesses, “But I love seeing              Extraordinary Minister of the Eucharist.

    the
                                                   the generations of families….good, old           She has three children (all graduates of
                                                   Catholic families. I have fun identifying if     MSM): Bevin Burdg ‘94, Aaron Burdg ‘95
                                                   they take more after their mom or dad. It        and Catherine Birks ’01. In addition, she
                                                   really is a beautiful thing to see.”             is also blessed with four grandchildren:

    poet
                                                                                                    Chandler Edwards ’15, Keaton Edwards,
                                                   Mount St. Mary is often referenced as
                                                                                                    Annabelle Birks and Donovan Birks.
                                                   a family— a home. Mrs. Burdg agrees,
                                                   “This place is like working from home.           When asked about retirement, Mrs. Burdg
                                                   I remember Rosie would cook in the               is adamant, “I don’t have an interest in
                                                   evenings and it would smell so good. You         retiring. I enjoy watching the students

     within
                                                   would just want to stay here for dinner!         grow. Some even come back to teach and
                                                   You also develop so many friends with            work here. The spirit of this place is really
                                                   the faculty that they become like family.        special. You walk in these doors and it
                                                   Mount St. Mary really is a special place.”       feels like a special place. Everyone should
                                                                                                    know about it.”
     In the fall of 1987, Mount St. Mary           After three decades in an office, styles of
     accepted an application of a wonderful        record keeping are bound to change. Now
     and dedicated staff member who to this        inputted on computer, attendance and
     day answers the phones in the front office.   grades used to be hand-written. “It was
     She is lovingly known as Mrs. Linda Burdg.    so worldly getting a computer processor                    Mercy Day 2016
                                                   in the 90s,” she explains, “We thought we               a poem written by Linda Burdg
     “I actually applied for a position in
                                                   were big-time using Scantron for tardies                    for Catherine MacAuley
     the advancement office,” Mrs. Burdg
                                                   and absences. I used to come in at five
     explained, “but it was filled by one of
                                                   am on Monday mornings and collect                      Mount Saint Mary standing bright.
     my good friends. It was only a few
                                                   attendance lists outside all the classrooms.             Catherine’s beacon in the night.
     months later when I accepted my job in
                                                   Everything had to be scanned before a                     When I feel lost and all alone
     administration.” Within her 32-year MSM
                                                   new school week could be recorded.”                   I call your hallowed halls my home.
     school career, she has seen staff come
     and go, worked under the leadership of        “I enjoyed my drive in the early, dark and
                                                                                                           Your holy spirit comforts me
     five principals and assisted over 2,500       dawn hours. You look for the highest
                                                                                                            In such a way that I can see
     students with daily school needs. Mrs.        point on the horizon and there she is— The
                                                                                                           All the souls who came before
     Burdg proudly emphasizes, “It’s the           Mount— in all her glory just resting on top
                                                   of the hill with a lit steeple. She looks like
                                                                                                        Through your welcoming front door.
     students you learn to love and cherish.
     They come through our doors and are           a castle! And it would never fail as I walked
                                                   in that Sister Judith would tell me she
                                                                                                       They hold their breath when I pass by,
     instantly part of the MSM family.”
                                                   watched me walk in from her window. She                Then heave a nearly silent sigh.
     But don’t let her humble and gentle                                                                 They let me know in quiet ways
                                                   was always making sure I was safe and
     demeanor fool you. She still enjoys                                                              They stand beside me through the days.
                                                   guarded with her prayers in escort.
     catching a student in a fib. From
     forged notes to faux calls, this school       Not all moments in life are easy. In               They have not gone, they’re with us still
     administrator keeps students on the           September 2007, Mrs. Burdg lost her                       In this place upon the hill
     up-and-up. “I remember one time there         beloved husband, Harvey. Harvey Burdg              Where laughter rings and Mercy reigns
     was a pay phone on campus. I knew             was a talented musician and headed the              In Catherine’s school upon the plains.
     this particular student was calling from      local band “Harvey and the Wallbangers.”

6
Kailey O'Connor - Coach Leroy Cantrell Celebrates 25 Years
Advancement

Jimmie Austin                                                                            CORPORATE PARTNER

  THE UNIVERSITY OF
OKLAHOMA GOLF CLUB

The 32nd Annual Pete Córdova Golf Classic                   Thank you to our Corporate Partner: Mercy
was held at the prestigious Jimmie Austin
                                                            We appreciate all of our corporate sponsors,
OU Golf Club on June 18, 2019. Eighty-eight
                                                            hole sponsors and donors:
golfers enjoyed lunch before hitting the links
                                                            CareSource
for the four person scramble. New to the
                                                            Redrock Canyon Grill Norman
tournament was a stop at the Heatly House                                                          Majestic Construction &
                                                            Architectural Design Group             Roofing of Oklahoma
(located between green 4 and 14) to enjoy
                                                            CMS Willowbrook                        Mark Tomlinson Farmers Insurance
beverages and cigars. Many toasts were
                                                            Alvarado’s Mexican Restaurant          3Nines
made to honor our beloved Pete Córdova.
                                                            Ward Glass Law                         Wegener Human Resources
After the golfing, everyone gathered in the Everest Event   Tyler Media-The Franchise              Larry Howell
Center for dinner and awards. The 2019 Trophy Champion      Mollman’s Culligan Water               Mark Krapff Total Home Exterior
was the Mercy Team of Leroy Cantrell, Russell Payton,       CRG Laboratories                       Mollman Media
Johnathan Tecmire and Greg Jackson.                         Weokie Credit Union                    Hellas Construction
                                                            Farm Bureau Insurance-Mark Wolf        Robert C. Zahl, PE, PLC
Thanks to our golfers and the following sponsors, we        All Saints Catholic School             Eskridge Honda
raised over $17,000 to provide scholarships and tuition     Christ the King Catholic School        CINTAS
assistance for MSM students, along with monies to help      St. Charles Borromeo Catholic School   Denis Rischard & Associates
with student projects and alumni activities.                Quad M Ranch                           Greg Robinson TRC Legal Systems
                                                            The Brown Family                       Hal Smith Restaurant Group
Unfortunately, due to Covid 19, we were forced to cancel
                                                            Wedel Rahill & Associates, CPA’s       Russell Britten
our 2020 golf tournament. We plan to be back next year
                                                            Willow Pregnancy Support
bigger and stronger for the 33rd Annual Pete Córdova
                                                            Ferguson Buick GMC
Golf Classic. We hope you will join us!

                                                                                                                                      7
Kailey O'Connor - Coach Leroy Cantrell Celebrates 25 Years
Anahi Angeles Figueroa ’09

                                                                          James Biscone ’09
    Tim Campbell ’10

                                 Recent graduates of Mount St. Mary
                                 are making a profound impact in their
                                 respective communities. Featured here
                                 are several of these young alumni who
                                 are leading, serving, and living Mercy
                                 in their professions and communities.
    Jessica Mascote ’09

                                                                          Jacquelyn Hooper ’16

8
Kailey O'Connor - Coach Leroy Cantrell Celebrates 25 Years
Alumni

ANAHI ANGELES FIGUEROA ‘09                                              TIM CAMPBELL ‘10
Since 2015, Anahi Angeles ‘09 Figueroa has been working                 “Looking back on my journey from a high school freshman to
for the Oklahoma City non-profit organization Variety Care.             now is truly amazing. MSM played a role in transforming this
She is a Community Outreach Coordinator at this wonderful               small, skinny, athletic young boy into a professional, reflective,
organization, and she loves everything about her job. Reflecting        and humble man,” says Tim Campbell ‘10, expounding on the
on her career, Anahi exclaims, “I am passionate about public            influence of his time at The Mount. After high school, where
health for many reasons, but mainly because it protects the             Tim was a four-sport Rocket athlete and played the drums, Tim
health of individuals and of our communities.” Anahi fondly             earned an education degree from UCO. Tim was recruited to join
remembers how much MSM teacher Magi Whitaker has                        the staff at Yukon Public Schools, where he is a seventh grade
supported her on her educational journey: “Mrs. Whitaker made           English Language Arts teacher and basketball coach. Tim is highly
a huge impact during my senior year! She made sure that I               respected and admired as an educator both by his colleagues
had all the proper tools in order to graduate...and was a huge          and students, earning Rookie Teacher of the Year for YPS after
supporter throughout my college career.” Upon leaving MSM,              his first year, and being recognized as the “Teacher of the Game”
Anahi graduated from UCO in 2015 with a public health major             for the Texas Tech vs. OU football game this past fall. Tim has
and Spanish minor, and credits her faith as the foundation for          powerful advice for current MSM students. “People will also tell
what she achieved, reminding current MSM students, “When                you that your aspirations and dreams are crazy and impossible. If
you allow God to be the center of your life, everything falls into      that situation presents itself, I want you to do the following. Smile
place at its own timing.”                                               at them and recite Philippians 4:13: ‘I can do all things through
                                                                        Christ who strengthens me’.”

JAMES BISCONE ‘09
For those who attended MSM with James Biscone ‘09, he’ll
                                                                        JACQUELYN HOOPER ‘16
always be remembered for winning basketball homecoming at               For Jacquelyn Hooper ‘16, her time and teachers at MSM
the buzzer, literally coming off the bench to sink two free throws      were crucial in developing the interests that would drive her to
after an injured teammate couldn’t go to the line...and doing           excellence in her education, recalling Coach Hepner and Ms. Pace
this as a freshman. That moment proved to be auspicious, as             specifically. Jacquelyn earned her bachelor’s degree in three years
James would go on to represent MSM in athletics and a host of           from OU with a 4.0 GPA, receiving a special medal from President
other extracurricular activities, ranging from school newspaper         James Gallogly for doing so. With a political science major and
editor to student council and National Honor Society member.            Spanish minor, Jacquelyn was well equipped for admission to
                                                                        OU’s law school, where, among many service activities, she is
Since graduating from The Mount, James has continued
                                                                        currently part of the Volunteer Income Tax Association (VITA).
that same path of achievement and service. After becoming
                                                                        VITA volunteers help lower-income individuals and families to
the first graduate of Oklahoma City University’s Oxford Plan,
                                                                        complete their tax returns, which allows them access to essential
completing his B.A. and J.D. studies in six years, James began
                                                                        tax refunds. These refunds can help them pay for things like
working as an attorney at Johnson & Biscone in Oklahoma
                                                                        rent, food, clothing, gas, etc. Jacquelyn is fulfilling her childhood
City. Of his career as a trial lawyer, James says, “A trial lawyer is
                                                                        dream, as she remarks, “I’ve known I wanted to go to law school
called when a wrong has been perpetrated. Usually, the voice
                                                                        ever since I was a kid.”
on the other end of the line belongs to a person who is scared
and looking for help. Trial lawyers answer the call. I am in the
profession of answering the call and helping other people.”             JESSICA MASCOTE ‘09
James is clear that his time at MSM has had a huge impact               Jessica Mascote ‘09 has inspiring advice for MSM students
on him professionally and personally, especially in his faith           headed to college: “Get involved in college and accomplish
life. “The class that I enjoyed the most, by far, was theology.         more than what you think you can, so that if you reflect back to
Theology is the heartbeat of the school. The theology classes           your undergraduate years, you can say, ‘Yes, I did that!’ instead
educated us and equipped us with the necessary tools to                 of wishing you had done that.” Jessica herself accomplished
embark into the world as Christ’s living, breathing Mercy.”             so much after leaving MSM, working for the Upward Bound
Several teachers were influential, James says. “Mr. Boeckman            program and becoming the community outreach and scholarship
taught me how to think. Coach Hatchett taught me how to win.            assistant at the University of Central Oklahoma while earning her
Coach Kielty taught me, and countless others, how to DREAM              bachelor’s degree. She followed those achievements by earning
BIG DREAMS!”                                                            her master’s in higher education in 2017, and she currently
                                                                        serves as senior admissions counselor for UCO, based in the D/
James is married to his wonderful wife Stephanie, and are
                                                                        FW metro, along with many other roles. Jessica reflects, “I love
expecting their first child, a baby girl in November. James
                                                                        working within student affairs and assisting students as they
and Stephanie are deeply connected to MSM, where James
                                                                        continue to pursue and obtain that college degree. I have always
currently serves as a member of the board, and continue to
                                                                        told myself that I want to be that person/mentor that I never had
support the school in many ways.
                                                                        when I first started college as a first-generation student.”

                                                                                                                                                9
Kailey O'Connor - Coach Leroy Cantrell Celebrates 25 Years
UP
OWE
     Mount Powerlifting Team
     Shows Impressive Gains
     Meralyn Staudt steps into the Dickson         At the time of his first encounter, MSM
     High School weight room for a regionals       Director of Advancement, Chris Stiles,
     powerlifting competition. Starting off last   was the head football coach. Farold
     year at very minimal weights, this MSM        remembers, “He would flash an infectious
     junior is about to set a school record of     smile and was all about hospitality. You
     745 pounds: 315 deadlift, 295 squat           were impressed by the kids on campus
     and 135 bench. A very impressive feat         from the way they played to how they
     awarding her the 4th place title for the      respected their coaches and adults. It was
     girls state meet! Welcome to Coach            a true sense of community.” So in 2018,
     Farold Smith’s world of powerlifting—         when Coach Willis Alexander called with a
     executing a healthy program of strength       job offer, it was taken without hesitation.
     conditioning for high school athletes.        “I knew I would be joining a great
                                                   program and was up for the challenge of
     Coach Smith is well versed and
                                                   implementing a competitive powerlifting
     accomplished in high school and
                                                   program.”
     college sports—in particular, Christian
     campuses. His resume not only includes        Why powerlifting? For this small-town
     a master’s degree in coaching and athletic    Kansas farm boy it’s all about discipline.
     administration, but also experience in        “Nothing in life is easy. You have to put
     many sporting programs from Southern          in the work. And if you don’t put in the
     Nazarene University, Oklahoma Christian       work, you don’t have results. You put in
     School, Oklahoma Bible Academy as well        the work, however, not only do you see
     as the University of Central Oklahoma         results, you attain personal bests.” This is
     and Oklahoma City Community College.          one of the core values taught in the MSM
     During his high school team experience at     powerlifting program along with good
     other schools, Smith found himself very       form, technique and diet. Smith explains,
     impressed with The Mount.                     “We want our athletes to be well-equipped

10
Athletics

                                                                                                 “You cheer one
and knowledgeable in the weight room.
No student should be intimidated by the
                                              and added on two freshman competitions
                                              with regionals and junior regionals. We            another along to
gym. We don’t stress pounds or how
much you weigh—what’s important is
                                              finished this year with two new members
                                              of the 1,000 pounds club with junior,
                                                                                                 their personal best
how you fit in your clothes and how you       Garrett Hanke*, and sophomore, Niccolas            regardless of what
feel. When you feel strong you exude          Bennett. We anticipate an increase in
confidence and this confidence, starts        participation this 2020-21 school year.”           team they represent.”
with diet and smart food choices. We also
                                              As the MSM program continues to
emphasize to never compare your body to
                                              become competitive, it is important to
                                                                                                 — Coach Farold Smith
another’s. All body types are different and
                                              note that the sport of powerlifting is much
the goal is to be the best unique you.”
                                              different than others. Smith details, “You       No stranger to the bar himself, Coach
With such important and confidence            cheer one another along to their personal        Smith holds the 2019 Oklahoma
building tools, it’s no wonder the            best regardless of what team they                Master Novice title for a total weight
powerlifting program at MSM has               represent. This is a good lesson to carry on     of 1,470 pounds. When ask what it
grown exponentially. In 2019 there            in life.” Another difference is the individual   takes to earn such a record, he simply
were 6 students enrolled. This year 32        aspect. “Although you are on a team,             answered, “You just have to lift the
competed. Coach Smith boasts, “We             it’s simply you against the bar.” Smith          weight.”
also went from no girls to half a dozen       continues, “You either lift or you do not. I
young ladies competing. And I continue to     pride myself in teaching proper technique        Farold is married to Tammie for the
recruit—whether it be in the gym or school    and diet. I want all these students to           past 23 years. And yes, they met at the
hallways, I’m always recruiting.” Smith       succeed in their personal best which could       gym! He—lifting weights at the Kansas
adds, “It’s fun to watch them mature in the   result in a win for the MSM team.”               State fitness center and she—teaching
weight room. Perhaps once they were                                                            aerobics. Together they have four
                                              Powerlifting also offers many health             children: John (26), James (24), Jacob
intimidated, now they certainly know what
                                              benefits such as stronger muscles, bones,        (22) and Jordan (21).
they are doing and how to compete. This
                                              joints, and improved metabolism. Smith
program is catching ground.”                                                                   (*Garrett qualified for the state meet
                                              explains, “I see the high school athletes on
The numbers are there to back up the          the basketball court in knee braces and          but the competition was cancelled due
statement with double competition dates       wraps. Powerlifting helps you develop            to COVID-19)
compared to the year before. Smith            stronger muscles and tendons around the
explains, “We had two meets and regionals     bone which can actually decrease the risk
in 2019. For 2020, we have four meets         of injury.”

                                                                                                                                           11
MSM Alum
     Discovers Passion
     for Filmmaking

12
Alumni

T
           hey say it’s impossible to be in    idea to work at Merrill Lynch, so I did.”
           two places at once, but if anyone   Twenty-seven years (and a couple firms)
           is, it’s MSM alum Al Mertens        later, he’s the proud owner of a thriving
           (Class of ’86, Cornerstone          nation-wide financial advisory practice.
Society Member). As a senior vice              “Helping generations within families
president and financial advisor at Hilltop     and assisting non-profits with their
Securities brokerage firm in Oklahoma          investments is a passion,” he says.
City, he successfully navigates financial
                                               It took tragedy to draw out his creative
markets for clients on a daily basis. Oh,
                                               side. “When a close friend was killed in a
and he’s also a screenwriter and movie
                                               plane crash, our circle charged me with
director. A prolific writer, he has written
                                               the task of writing and delivering her
multiple scripts that have been #1
                                               eulogy. Writing it somehow triggered
bestsellers on Amazon.com, and his latest
                                               an outpouring of pent-up emotions. I
movie, feature film Lord Finn, is currently
                                               began to blog obsessively and had quite
on the festival circuit, taking home awards
                                               the group in cyberspace who really dug
from around the globe.
                                               my dark purges. Then I wrote a novel,
All this after quite a humble beginning. As    learning in the process that long-form
an infant, Al was adopted from the now-        prose writing is not my skill set.”            Al and Brandi Mertens at an International
closed Catholic Charities orphanage in                                                        Film Festival in Los Angeles
                                               On a whim, Al took a week-long
Oklahoma City. Growing up, he attended
                                               screenwriting class at Oklahoma City
the Temple B'nai Israel, New World School,
                                               Community College and was hooked.
and St. Philip Neri in Midwest City.
                                               Since then he’s written and directed a
But it’s the teachers at Mount St. Mary he     number of films and penned numerous
most credits for making him the man he is.     scripts. “I'm very proud of all of my pieces
“So many had such a profound influence,”       of art. They’ve all helped me navigate
he says. “Mary Lee Gill and the late Nina      important issues in my life,” he says.
Smith on the English and literature side of
                                               “Maturing and finding balance in life has
things. Steve Reynolds, Senor Córdova,
                                               been an ongoing process,” Al says. “You
and Skip Ashworth on the life side of
                                               make the time to do the right things when
things. And of course, Talita DeNegri for
                                               the pain of not doing them becomes too
teaching me how to type!” He laughs,
                                               great. As a long-time recovering alcoholic,
adding, “I may even have been one of her
                                               every single day with my wife is a gift. The
students during her first year of teaching.”
                                               future undoubtedly holds many more
Al credits Smith’s Film Study and              blessings as I continue my commitment
Introduction to American Literature            to do for others even more than what
classes for providing the foundation           was done for me in this great country of
for his interest in storytelling through       ours. A top-notch Christian life path and
film. “The Mount not only focused on           lifelong friendships coalesced for me
                                                                                              Al Mertens, MSM Class of 1986
the fundamentals, but also included            from having attended Mount St. Mary
what basically amounted to a degree in         Catholic High School.”
humanities.”

After graduating, Al spent a couple years
in the U.S. Army, lived in Seattle briefly,
then moved back to Oklahoma City,
enrolling at Oklahoma City University
where he received a degree in business
finance graduating with honors. “I had an

                                                                                                                                          13
Student
     Feature
      Students are the heartbeat
       of the Mount family. Meet
     three of our current students
         and get to know what        Max Garza
                                     Max Garza, Class of 2021, has been playing golf since
      motivates them and things      he was five, and it shows. He was a member of the
                                     MSM golf team which made it to the OSSAA state
       they love most about their    competition in 2019. As an individual, Max also plays

            MSM experience.          golf tournaments throughout the year all over Oklaho-
                                     ma and Texas. Asked what he enjoys about golf, Max
                                     declares, “Watching the ball go in the hole is the best
                                     part.” Max’s goal is to earn a college golf scholarship,
                                     and he’s well on his way to reaching it. Max came to
                                     MSM as a freshman from Houston, Texas, and says he
                                     has really come to “love what The Mount stands for.
                                     The people here are with you in the good times and
                                     support you through the bad times.” He admires his
                                     golf coach, John Mazza, and says Coach Mazza’s ex-
                                     perience really helps the team. Max represents MSM
                                     very well as both athlete and student.

     “The people here are with you in
     the good times and support you
     through the bad times.”
14
Students

Noelle Ducote                                             Sofia Shepelwich
Waking up early, staying up late, pain, sweat: Noelle     Sofia Shepelwich, Class of 2022, has a heart for
Ducote, Class of 2021, likes the hard things that go      animals. Her family currently has eighteen pets--
with being an MSM track athlete. Noelle is a sprinter,    yes, you read that correctly: two pigs, three goats,
running the 100 and 200 meter races for the Rock-         ten chickens, two cats, and one dog. All of them
ets. She likes running track because it makes her test    are rescue animals on the family’s seven-acre es-
herself, and she likes sprinting precisely because        tate, and as Sofia says, they’re a part of the family.
it does not require her to pace herself. Noelle just      Sofia has another love, too: music. She plays the
wants to go! Noelle’s interests outside of school         saxophone and violin, and wants to learn the pia-
are pretty far away from the track--she is a frequent     no. Sofia says of her affinity for music, “It’s a special
hunter, going after deer, turkey, dove, duck, and,        feeling when you’re making music with other
as she says with a laugh, “whatever walks under           people.” Her career goals don’t include music, but
the tree.” But her motivation is the same, as she         she does want to learn the electric guitar because
bow hunts precisely because it’s more challenging.        she regularly listens to classic rock. “I love Bruce
Whatever she hunts, Noelle eats. She describes how        Springsteen,” says Sofia, an unexpected choice
eating game meat is “normal” for her family: “It’s just   of favorites among current teenagers--along with
what I grew up doing.” Noelle says she loves The          Pink Floyd, Rush, and other timeless bands. One
Mount because she feels so comfortable here and           of her favorite classes at MSM is English with Mr.
values her relationships with the teachers. Noelle’s      Wolfkiel, who Sofia says gives the students “lots
enthusiasm, energy, and sense of humor make her a         of chances to voice what we think.” And as you
valued member of the Rocket family.                       can tell by her diverse interests, Sofia has lots of
                                                          interesting things to say.

                                                                                                                                 15
A ssisting
                                                             C harities
                                                             T hrough
                                                             S ervice

     ACTS
     of Kindness
     Community service is what we are called to do as
     Christians and living out the Mercy Values honors the
     Sisters of Mercy and their legacy and commitment to
     our school. Service is not only taught but modeled at
     The Mount through activities within our school and
     throughout the larger community.

16
Programs

At The Mount, community service is wo-             Make-A-Wish Foundation of Oklahoma             them from participating in typical athletic
ven into the daily lives of our students           was the recipient for our third Annual ACTS    activities. The Rockets were umpires and
in an effort to allow them to experience           Week. MSM students and staff have also         coaches and assisted the Courage League
the joy of giving of themselves and to             supported Downs Syndrome Association           team members in getting to bases and
alert them to the needs of the commu-              of Central Oklahoma and the OU Children’s      fielding the ball. Both groups had a lot of
nity. While service hours are not “required”       Hospital Foundation.                           fun and members of the Rocket football
for graduation, we feel that our method of                                                        team shared that they were inspired by the
                                                   Mercy Girls is a spiritual organization
instilling service as a Christian responsibility                                                  players who showed such joy and enthu-
                                                   focused on providing all students at
is leading students to a life-long commit-                                                        siasm for the sport they were playing. The
                                                   The Mount time each week to gather in
ment to be a person of service rather than                                                        coordinator of Courage League was very
                                                   fellowship to pray and share how the Lord
just a project to fulfill before leaving high                                                     impressed with the MSM students who
                                                   is working in their lives. They invite guest
school. Below is a partial listing of service                                                     showed an eagerness to support and en-
                                                   speakers who come throughout the year
projects in which MSM students, faculty                                                           courage all of the Courage League athletes.
                                                   to share their thoughts on topics such as
and administration participated during the
                                                   healthy relationships, living a Godly life,    Unfortunately, due to the Covid 19 pan-
2019-2020 school year.
                                                   growing in your relationship with God, and     demic, service projects planned by the win-
The Wisdom Project is a collaboration be-          strengthening your prayer life. Mercy Girls    ter and spring sport teams were cancelled.
tween the Theology and Art Departments             also do outreach projects such as Valen-
                                                                                                  It is exciting to see the desire for service
at The Mount. Students go to St. Anne’s            tine’s for Veterans.
                                                                                                  grow in the hearts of our students during
Retirement Center in OKC and spend the
                                                   Members of the National Honor Society          their years at The Mount. It is also heart-
day visiting with residents to learn about
                                                   supported two out-of-school projects this      warming to know that they will continue to
their life experiences while gaining insight
                                                   year. NHS members collected backpacks          carry the Mercy Spirit with them into their
into an older generation. Students write
                                                   and school supplies and then delivered         colleges, careers, parishes and families. If
an essay about the person they interview
                                                   them to local elementary schools for stu-      ever you meet a Mount St. Mary student, or
and take photos during their visit. We often
                                                   dents in need. Pierce Carsey, an elementary    alumni, be sure to ask them how their ser-
hear that this project is a favorite among
                                                   student at Rosary and son of MSM Baord         vice experience at The Mount has shaped
the residents who look forward to sharing
                                                   of Trustee Chair, Dan Carsey, requested the    their vision of the world and enhanced their
their knowledge and wisdom with a young-
                                                   assistance of NHS members in collecting        desire to serve.
er generation.
                                                   items such as socks, gloves, and snacks, so
Habitat for Humanity is an organization that       he could prepare small bags to be distrib-
builds housing for deserving families. MSM         uted to people on the streets of Oklahoma
junior and senior students spend their an-         City. In addition to these projects, NHS
nual class service days working at Habitat         members have a responsibility to perform
for Humanity doing a variety of projects           service activities within the school and in
including painting, laying grass, and debris       their larger community.
removal.
                                                   A fun project taken on by the freshman
OKC Regional Food Bank is where our                Rocket Experience Class, was decorating
freshman and sophomore students spend              the Mercy Convent, located at Mercy Hospi-
their service day performing a variety of          tal, for Christmas. While decorating, they
tasks including boxing foods, and sorting          visited with the retired Sisters and enjoyed
produce and other products. They also fill         honoring them with love and support.
backpacks which are delivered weekly to
                                                   All athletic teams at MSM do a group
area schools so children will have food for
                                                   project during their pre or post season to
the weekend. Students also tour the facility
                                                   serve the community. These projects are
and learn how the food bank processes
                                                   chosen by the team members from areas
and distributes food to the OKC community
                                                   that inspire their desire to serve.
in support of individuals and families strug-
gling with the lack of ability to get food.        This past fall, the Rocket football team
                                                   chose to attend baseball at Courage
ACTS Week (Assisting Charities Through
                                                   League, which is a baseball program
Service) is the annual week-long fundrais-
                                                   sponsored by Moore Youth Baseball. The
ing event sponsored by the MSM Student
                                                   Rockets participated in baseball games
Council. The entire MSM community par-
                                                   with athletes who have intellectual or
ticipates in fun activities and dress up days
                                                   physical disabilities that often prevent
to support one charity chosen each year.

                                                                                                                                                 17
returning
     home
     Mount Alumni Return to Give Back What They Received
     In times of uncertainty one can only go
     back to what they know is certain. What
     is certain to Mount alumni are the core
                                                     extraordinary teachers throughout her
                                                     history, but they were more than teachers
                                                     of a subject. They were mentors who
                                                                                                    mentors on a personal level. “Mr. [David]
                                                                                                    Roberts and Mr. [Mark] Woodward were
                                                                                                    super encouraging by inspiring me to
     values of life which hold true in both the      equipped their students about life. “Señor     grow as a leader,” said Pickens. Tecmire,
     good times and the bad times. Values of         David Naranjo, my art teacher, challenged      who is a Guidance Counselor added, “Mrs.
     faith, family, education, and treating others   me to care about being creative and to         [Talita] DeNegri has been like a second
     like you would like to be treated build         find joy in it. But while he inspired me as    mom to me. I will never forget as a student
     one’s character as a young person and will      an art teacher, he taught me about God’s       overseeing Student Council and going into
     be guideposts throughout their life. For        mercy and showed me what it was like to        her office upset and crying that no one
     Mount Alumni, Becca Brooks ‘90 Lane,            be a faithful follower of Christ. This still   raised their finger up during the singing of
     Leigha Pierce ‘10 Liuzza, Kathryn Pickens       influences me with my students today,”         the alma mater after a game. It was like no
     ‘07, Mallory Cantrell ‘06 Tecmire, and          shared Liuzza, who teaches art and assists     one really cared. She helped me under-
     Elle DeNegri ‘08 Muzny, the lessons they        with the Kairos Program at the school.         stand not all things are going to go our
     learned as Mount students have inspired         English teacher, Rebecca Lane, collabo-        way but to stand up and be a leader. She
     them to “Come Home” to give back what           rated a similar story. “Nina Smith taught      said if I was passionate about something
     they have received.                             English in a way that you were educated        then people would follow me.”
                                                     about many things, including the Human-
     Many schools have outstanding teach-                                                           The route back to The Mount has been
                                                     ities. This made my interest in her class
     ers who challenge their students in the                                                        a different one for each of our alumni
                                                     soar through the roof!” Moreover, math
     classroom. Not only has The Mount had                                                          teachers. Lessons have been learned
                                                     teacher, Kathryn Pickens got to know her

                        Leigha Pierce
18                                                                                Kathryn Pickens ‘07
                         ‘10 Liuzza
Alumni

                                               “I always wanted to teach here at The Mount
                                               because I had such a good experience as a
                                               student. Now I get to not only teach but to educate
                                               the whole person in their faith, their leadership,
 Becca Brooks
   ‘90 Lane                                    their service, and their character.”
                                               — Kathryn Pickens ‘07

                                               She explained, “What The Mount did for me, now I can do
                                               for The Mount.” In contrast, Lane taught for 16 years at
                                               Mustang High School before returning to her roots. “Kids
                                               are kids wherever they are, but at The Mount I can teach
                                               them in a more complete manner. We don’t just teach the
                                               core subject, but we teach our faith, and if you are in tune
                                               with your faith, it will touch everything in life,” said Lane.
                                               Liuzza taught in Edmond Public Schools before being
                                               recruited back to The Mount. “Talita [DeNegri] reached
                                               out to me and asked me to come back. She made me feel
                                               wanted and has invested in me as an educator and leader.
                                               It was a good feeling to be called out to come back to The
                                               Mount,” said Liuzza.
Mallory Cantrell
                                               As Mrs. [Talita] DeNegri encouraged Mallory [Cantrell]
 ‘06 Tecmire
                                               Tecmire as a student to be passionate about a cause so
                                               that others will follow, passion for teaching today’s stu-
                                               dents soars through the souls of these alumni teachers.
                                               Lane shared, “Teaching is helping these kids reach their
along the path, but all have felt a special
                                               potential and seeing the possibilities of what they can
calling to return to their alma mater to
                                               do.” Pickens added, “I always wanted to teach here at
teach, to mentor, and to equip young
                                               The Mount because I had such a good experience as a
people just has they had been as Mount
                                               student. Now I get to not only teach but to educate the
students themselves. Elle Muzny is now                                                                          Elle DeNegri
                                               whole person in their faith, their leadership, their service,
the Freshman Guidance Counselor and                                                                              ‘08 Muzny
                                               and their character.”
sees the school through two lenses. “The
Mercy Values and Catholicity are the same      In the Senior Superlatives in the 2010 MSM Yearbook,
as when I was a student. What has come         Leigha Pierce [Liuzza] was named as the graduate most
to the forefront is how students of today      likely to teach at The Mount! Whether or not they were
are changing with the times, and it is neat    expected to Come Home to teach at The Mount, a group
to be in a role to help them adapt with this   of dedicated and passionate alumni has made their way
change almost daily,” said Muzny. Muzny,       back to the classrooms where it all began for them. Now
who never envisioned herself as a teacher      in uncertain times there is one certainty that all Mount
after graduating from The Mount, now has       students can count on as shared by Mallory Tecmire, “I was
a perspective shared by her alumni peers.      once in your shoes. We can get through this together.”

                                                                                                                               19
AP    22 AP Courses Offered
                                           192 32.3
                                                   by the
                                                   numbers

                                                    AP Exams taken
                                                    by 108 students
                                                                                                                          %
                                                                                        (Nearly one-third) of the class of 2019
                                                                                        scored a 3 or higher on at least one AP

     821
                                                                                         exam during their high school career.

           # of AP Scholars                       # of AP Scholars                               # of AP Scholars
     (Granted to students who receive               with Honors                                  with Distinction
      scores of 3 or higher on three or    (Granted to students who receive an            (Granted to students who receive an
             more AP exams.)              average score of at least 3.25 on all AP       average score of at least 3.5 on all AP
                                          exams taken and scores of 3 or higher          exams taken and scores of 3 or higher
               AP Scholars
                                             on four or more of these exams.)               on five or more of these exams.)
             Lily Bonds '20
          Courtney Brierly '19                  AP Scholars with Honors                      AP Scholar with Distinction
         Alejandra Cisneros '19                   Patrick Martinez ‘20                           Erick Lassiter ‘19
             Risa Davis '19                       Calliope Staudt ‘19
              Ean Heise '19
           Claire Keupen '20
          Thien-Nhi Luong '20

                                             $101,113
          Kailey O'Connor '20
          John Paul Pierce '20
             Cole Ranck '20
           Emily Rockers '19
          Sophia Shepherd '19
            Logan Smith '20
            Piper Smith '20
           Samuel Sproat '19                 Mount St. Mary class of 2019 earned 254 credit hours translating into a cost-saving
           Abigail Staudt '19                 of $101,113. This is based on the Oklahoma Board of Regents AP credit transfer
             Zach Tyler '20                         policy and the average cost of tuition and fees at state universities.
           Mary Wavering '20

20
Alumni

MSM Grads Step Out!
We celebrate the more than $6.4M in scholarships awarded to our class of 2020 as
they take their next step at prestigious universities across Oklahoma and the US!

            Avila University                                                        University of Arkansas
            Kansas City, MO               Oklahoma State University - OKC               Fayetteville, OK
                                                Oklahoma City, OK
           Baylor University                                                     University of Central Florida
               Waco, TX                         Presentation College                     Orlando, FL
                                                   Aberdeen, SD
     Florida Institute of Technology                                            University of Central Oklahoma
              Melbourne, FL                 Redlands Community College                    Edmond, OK
                                                    El Reno, OK
           Friends University                                                        University of Dallas
               Wichita, KS                        Rhodes College                          Dallas, TX
                                                   Memphis, TN
       Metro Technology Center                                                    University of Notre Dame
          Oklahoma City, OK                      Rose State College                    South Bend, IN
                                                  Midwest City, OK
      Oklahoma Baptist University                                                  University of Oklahoma
            Shawnee, OK                       San Jose State University                 Norman, OK
                                                    San Jose, CA
     Oklahoma Christian University                                                    University of Tulsa
            Edmond, OK                   Savannah College of Art and Design               Tulsa, OK
                                                   Savannah, GA
   Oklahoma City Community College                                              Universtiy of Central Oklahoma
          Oklahoma City, OK            Southwestern Oklahoma State University             Edmond, OK
                                                  Weatherford, OK
       Oklahoma City University                                                     Westminster College
          Oklahoma City, OK               The University of North Carolina-             Fulton, MO
                                                    Chapel Hill
      OKlahoma State University                                                    Wichita State University
                                                   Chapel Hill, NC
            Stillwater, OK                                                               Wichita, KS

                                                                                                                 21
Leveling the Playing Field
     Gift of Turf Football Field, Track, and Stands Puts Mount Athletics on New Playing Field

     In the Spring of 2012, a lunch with a new      coach for FREE,” exclaimed Stiles. Glass,
     MSM parent may have ignited the torch          who currently is the Senior Partner in the
     leading to the school’s world class new        Norman based law firm, WARD/GLASS,
     football turf, track, and visitors’ stands.    would drive over each afternoon during
     MSM Director of Advancement and then           the fall for the next three years coaching
     Head Football Coach, Chris Stiles, set up      the quarterbacks for the Rockets. “Woody
     a lunch with new Mount parent, Woody           made a lot of personal and professional
     Glass, to discuss the mission of the           sacrifices to coach football with us. Not
     school and to ask for his support of the       only was he an outstanding coach, but
     school’s annual fund, The Mount Fund.          what stood out was how much he cared.
     Glass’ daughter Chloe was just finishing       I knew he cared about me, the coaches,
     up her freshman year at The Mount,             the players, the football program, and
     having previously been in the Norman           the school. He and I had numerous              Cooper, Grace, and Grady Glass
     Public School system. The pursuing             conversations during our years coaching
     conversation and action may have been          together on all the things we could do to
                                                                                                 capital to fund the field, track and visitor
     the catalyst having a transformational         improve the football program, and most
                                                                                                 stands. Uniting this project with what was
     impact on The Mount’s future student           of those talks centered on improving
                                                                                                 completed five years earlier with the new
     athletes for decades to come.                  our outdated football facilities,” shared
                                                                                                 press box and home stands now gives the
                                                    Stiles. In 2014 some of those goals
     Glass was a former college quarterback                                                      school a football field and athletic facility
                                                    were achieved as the school’s generous
     at Northwestern State. Stiles had just                                                      second to none.
                                                    benefactors gave to renovate the home
     completed his first season as The Mount’s
                                                    stands, press box, and baseball field.       Reflecting, Stiles knows there are
     Head Football Coach, and one could
                                                                                                 many layers of conviction which may
     imagine how the conversation between           Fast forward to the Spring of 2019. Glass’
                                                                                                 have inspired this gift. “God works in
     these two quickly turned to football. “The     younger children, triplets Grace, Grady,
                                                                                                 mysterious ways. Gilbert leaving most
     more we visited, it became apparent            and Cooper, were finishing up their junior
                                                                                                 of his estate to the school is a legacy gift
     to me Woody’s football knowledge               year at The Mount. Even though Glass
                                                                                                 which will never be forgotten. Likewise,
     and background could be an asset to            had not coached for the Rockets in five
                                                                                                 I can’t answer unequivocally Woody’s
     our football program,” said Stiles. The        years, he still wanted to help the school
                                                                                                 connection in coaching at The Mount
     conversation then became centered on           in any way he could, and the discussions
                                                                                                 was the initiation of his family’s incredible
     Glass joining Stiles’ coaching staff. “Woody   continued how his family could make
                                                                                                 gift to the school, but I do believe his
     expressed a desire to coach, and I jumped      an impact. In addition, the school had
                                                                                                 involvement drew both himself and his
     at the opportunity to hire him. Plus, his      just received an estate gift from the late
                                                                                                 family closer to our mission and whom we
     price to coach was right. He was going to      Gilbert Stockinger, MSM Class of 1962,
                                                                                                 were and what we stood for. Now we have
                                                    and this gift, combined with a family gift
                                                                                                 a beautiful football field we are proud of
                                                    from Woody, Kacee, and Woody’s mother,
                                                                                                 and it certainly levels the playing field for
                                                    Jaquetta Glass, gave the school enough
                                                                                                 The Mount’s student athletes for decades
                                                                                                 to come,” shared Stiles.

22
Alumni

                                            A Night of

The 2019 Magic at The Mount Gala held in the wonderful MSM Commons was an evening
to celebrate the mission of Mount St. Mary. The event was a huge success raising funds
for various projects including a special appeal for remodeling the school’s chapel.
Larry Pierce, The Voice of the Rockets, served as the     the event a success. Committee members included: Amy Alley, Ed
evening’s emcee and Rick Miller, Founder of Fund Your     Averyt, Erin DeWalt, Laurann Donahue, Holly Eaton, Becky Flesher,
Org, was the auctioneer. This team brought incredible     Janet Lujan, LaTonia McDaniel, David Pickens, Richard & Paulette
vitality to the room. An adorable Frug puppy kicked       Rice, Pearl Summers-Garza, Piper Wiewel, & Annie Wildes. A special
off the live auction followed by several other great      thank you goes out to all of the volunteers who worked many hours to
packages including: a seven-day stay at a cabin in the    ensure the success of the gala.
Adirondacks, suite for a Thunder game, exceptional
                                                          We would also like to extend our gratitude to the school’s corporate
seats to several Thunder games with behind-the-
                                                          partners who helped sponsor this event. The Premier Sponsor for
scenes tours, a two-day guided crane hunt, whiskey
                                                          Magic 2019 was Smith Roberts Baldischwiler. Platinum Corporate
tasting with appetizers and cigars at STAG, suite for a
                                                          Partnerships included: Archdiocese of Oklahoma City, BancFirst,
St. Louis Cardinals’ baseball game, suite for an OKC
                                                          CareSource, Farm Bureau Insurance-Mark Wolf, Frontier State Bank,
Dodger’s game, a Blanton’s bourbon package, and
                                                          Hal Smith Restaurants, Hallman & Associates, P.C., Krapff Reynolds
premier seating for graduation and baccalaureate.
                                                          Construction, Mercy, Roto-Rooter Plumbers, Sisters of Mercy - South
The Fund-A-Need portion of the event was a huge           Central Community, and Ward & Glass, LLP.
success raising funds to remodel the school chapel.
                                                          Thank you to everyone who was in attendance, everyone who
The chapel was converted from a typing classroom
                                                          donated an item and everyone who helped make this event possible.
into a chapel over 30 years ago. Thanks to the
generosity of the MSM family, the remodel plans are in    A Magic at The Mount Virtual Gala is scheduled
the works.                                                for February 6, 2021. Look for more information
Mount parents put together some outstanding               coming soon on sponsorship opportunities, ticket
baskets for our “MSM Team Basket” section of the          prices, meal options and more!
auction. From a “Date Night” basket to a “Pot o’
Gold Lottery Ticket” basket, there was something
for everyone. The effort of the parents and basket
coordinators is enormous, and this is one of the most
popular sections of Magic!

Of course, the dessert auction returned this year with
incredible sweets from home bakers, retail bakeries,
and restaurants. We added a twist with the “Golden
Spoon” award. This award is given to the home baker
who receives the highest bid in the dessert auction.
Our winner this year was Ed Averyt for his pecan pie!

Once again, our Magic Gala Committee was
incredible. There were so many energetic people who
volunteered to be on the committee. It took many
hours of dedication from these members to make

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