The Claven Awards are presented to recognize exceptional individuals who have made significant contributions to the Lauralton Hall community. The Mother Mary Augustine Claven Award was inaugurated in 1980, on the occasion of the school’s 75th anniversary. A lifetime achievement award, it is named in honor of Lauralton Hall’s foundress, Mother Mary Augustine Claven, whose spirit is at the core of Lauralton Hall’s mission and Mercy education values. The Claven Award is the highest distinction given by the school and is awarded biennially to exceptional women in recognition of their outstanding example, service and achievement. The Reverend Peter H. McClean Award honors the memory of Father McClean, revered mentor, chaplain and lifelong friend of Lauralton Hall. It recognizes the dedication of a man whose enduring friendship and unusual generosity endear him to the Lauralton Hall community. The Reverend Cornelius J. Doherty Distinguished Service Award pays tribute to Father Doherty—priest, chaplain, friend and much loved teacher of Lauralton Hall. It recognizes devoted faculty and staff members who have generously given of themselves through outstanding service.
Awards are bestowed biennially, with the next ceremony slated for September 16, 2017.
The 2015 Claven Awards
In celebrating the future of Lauralton Hall, a select group of individuals were honored during the kickoff campaign gala, Because We Believe…The Campaign for Lauralton Hall.The Claven Award, named for Lauralton Hall’s foundress, Mother Mary Augustine Claven, is given bi-annually to women who have taken the core values of a Mercy education and have strived to implement one or more of these values into their personal life or career. These areas include: Compassion and Service, Educational Excellence, Concern for Women and Women’s Issues, Global Vision and Responsibility, Spiritual Growth and Development, and Collaboration.
The ceremony also included the presentation of the President’s Medal. Instituted during Lauralton’s Centennial Opening Convocation in September 2005, the President’s Medal is awarded in recognition of faithful and generous devotion to and support of Lauralton Hall and other educational institutions. The awards were presented by Chair of the Board of Trustees Michael D. Amato of Orange and Lauralton Hall President Antoinette Iadarola, Ph.D.
The recipients of the 2015 30th Claven Awards were Lauralton alumnae Congresswoman Rosa L. DeLauro; Mary Etta Higgins, RSM, formerly of Milford, now West Hartford; and Karin Devine Mayhew of Westlake Village, CA. Tony and Michelle Guzzi of Fairfield and Mary Ann Wasil, of Milford, Founder, President and CEO of the The Get in Touch Foundation were awardees of the President’s Medal. “All of the recipients are outstanding examples of individuals serving in the Mercy tradition,” said President Iadarola. “Their accomplishments align with Lauralton Hall’s mission of empowering women for life, not only here in Connecticut, but in the world at large through their philanthropic, professional and spiritual work.”
Congresswoman DeLauro, U.S. Representative for Connecticut's 3rd congressional district, serving since 1991 is an exemplar of a Lauralton-educated woman; she is a lifelong learner, compassionate advocate for the underserved, and responsible leader in today’s global society. Sister Mary Etta Higgins is a member of the Sisters of Mercy of the Americas, Northeast Community. She grew up in Milford and attended Lauralton from grammar school through high school. Ms. Higgins was recognized for her lifelong commitment as a consummate Mercy educator, compassionate community servant, and a loyal leader and friend. Karin Devine Mayhew is an accomplished human resources professional currently serving as the Senior Vice President – Organization Effectiveness at HEALTH NET, INC., Woodland Hills, CA. She was acknowledged for her outstanding business achievements, her service to her church and to Lauralton Hall.
President Medal recipients Tony and Michelle Guzzi were awarded for their committed philanthropic support of future generations of Lauralton Students. Mr. Guzzi is President and CEO of EMCOR Group, Inc., a publicly held, Connecticut based corporation and the world's largest specialty construction, facilities services and industrial services provider for a diverse range of companies, organizations, and US and UK government entities. He graduated with Highest Distinction from the United States Military Academy at West Point and earned an MBA with Distinction from Harvard Business School. He and his wife Michelle, a University of Oklahoma alumna and dedicated community volunteer, have provided Lauralton with the necessary support to launch the Because We Believe Campaign.
Mary Ann Wasil of The Get in Touch Foundation, a friend of the school is a breast cancer survivor and health activist since 2004. Ms. Wasil formulated the Get In Touch Girls’ Program and Daisy Wheel. The Daisy Wheel is an unparalleled breast health initiative educating girls in grades 5-12 on the importance of and instruction for breast self-exams. Since its inception in September 2009, Ms. Wasil has guided the program to all 50 states and 28 countries worldwide. Lauralton Hall prides itself in being the very first school in the world to implement the program.