Father William Fahlander '46, Mr. Richard Leahy '57 and Father Gregory Tolaas '83 are recipients of the 2001 Distinguished Alumni Award from The Saint Paul Seminary School of Divinity. The recipients, joined by alumni, relatives and friends, were honored at a Mass and reception on April 5 in St. Mary's Chapel.
Fahlander, who died unexpectedly on March 27 was honored for over 40 years of service to the diocese of Bismarck, N. D. in Catholic education, as superintendent of Home On the Range, a residential ranch for troubled youth and as a beloved parish pastor. His niece, Mary Jo Norum of Cottage Grove, accepted his award.
Leahy of Annapolis, Md. was chosen for his leadership in building a rural branch of the Catholic University of Bolivia for the indigenous people of Carmen Pampa and establishing an outreach program of community health services in the area. His efforts also included creating a fundraising structure, the Carmen Pampa Fund, to provide for the future financial security of the school.
Tolaas, pastor of St. Phillip's in north Minneapolis, was honored for his service as an effective parish pastor with outreach efforts to bring the faith to the local community. His years of service as director of campus ministry at the University of St. Thomas as well as his personal example of faith through the challenge of living with cystic fibrosis were also mentioned in the presentation.