Saint Mary’s Centennial Gala A Smashing Success

Saint Mary’s Centennial Gala A Smashing Success


A beloved valley high school recently celebrated 100 years of education, faith and community while raising $475,000 to kick off their next century of changing lives.

Saint Mary’s Catholic High School hosted their Centennial Gala at the Sheraton Grand Phoenix where over 600 alumni and guests joined in the fun. Beth Wand, Director of Operations at Sunland Water Company, and Barbara Bandura, First Vice President at Midfirst Bank, co-chaired the event, leading the way as generous donors gave over $475,000 to support the students, staff and good work of Saint Mary’s as they look forward to the next 100 years.

Saint Mary’s Catholic High School was founded in 1917 by the Sisters of the Precious Blood, and has served a diverse population of students as a college preparatory institution for a century. They are committed to providing a quality liberal arts education with an emphasis on forming virtuous young men and women who know the Truth and love the Good.

Community sponsors supported the cause, including Southwest Ground Control, Arizona Leadership Foundation, and The Andre Ethier Family and Arizona Leadership
Foundation. Guests enjoyed exciting live auctions and entertainment provided by brass band The Lucky Devils.

Perhaps the highlight of the evening was the touching recap of the school’s transformation and growth over the last century, with remarks from Rev. Eduardo A. Nevares, Rev. Robert Bolding and Rev. John Parks. They shared a toast to the next century of inspiring education and encouraging young adults to pursue a positive, meaningful life.

“Saint Mary’s holds such a special place in the hearts of so many. The school has truly transformed and grown right alongside of the City of Phoenix,” said gala co-chair, Barbara Bandura. “It has been so fun to see the community come together to support the school and more importantly, the students within it, we can’t wait to see all that they accomplish,” added gala co-chair, Beth Wand.

Emcees Mark Hart from Life Teen and SMHS alumna Nicolle Hernandez Cunningham from Passport Media LLC kept guests happy and laughing. The funds raised from the gala will directly support the education of future students through academic scholarships, the enhancement of the liberal arts curriculum and the improvement of athletic training spaces.

For more information about Saint Mary’s Catholic High School and its upcoming events, please visit or check out their official Facebook page here.

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