Board Bio — Brian Hillary

Tell Us A Little About Yourself: I grew up in Fremont, MI but have strong family ties to Grand Rapids and especially Saint Thomas (STA).  In fact, my dad and his seven brothers and sisters all graduated STA 8th grade and my kids love finding their pictures on the graduation photos wall in the basement at STA.  My grandparents were parishioners and my parents were married here.  I have been involved in endurance athletic training and competition since high school, love hunting, am a constant learner and I am grateful beyond words to be answering God’s call as husband and father.  I can be often found volunteering at STA and the students especially know me as a recess supervisor.

Tell Us About Your Family: My wife, Marcie, and I have been parishioners at STA ever since we married over 25 years ago.  It was a natural transition for us having just graduated Aquinas College in which we attended services both on campus and with Fr. Jim at STA.  All of our kids have attended STA since 3-year-old preschool with our youngest daughter, Mavis (2nd grade), and next in line, Sarah (5th grade), still here.  Jeb (11th grade) and Grant (10th grade) attend Catholic Central and are loving it.  Our family is constantly on the move with family gatherings, sports, music and travel.  Most of the summer, you will find us up north spending time on the lakes with one (or sometimes both) sets of grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins.

Role on the Board: Board Chair (5 years)

Why did you want to be on the Board? Five years ago, Derek Damstra, asked if I would be willing to join and I accepted.  Marcie and I love St. Thomas!  We have been actively involved for years at both the parish and school.  I have a Masters in Education and taught a few years before staying home with our kids and this was another natural way to serve.  I began as a member at large, served as the secretary and am now the board chair.

What do you hope to accomplish for Saint Thomas? Catholic education is a vital resource for our community, nation and world.  Saint Thomas provides “A Dynamic Catholic Education Centered in Christ.” This formulates our students into being the next leaders who will provide us with stable witness to the search for truth.  Our Catholic roots in faith are deep and provide a solid framework to weather any storm, live joyfully and love fully.  This faith and love of Christ is what I hope to pass on through my work at Saint Thomas.

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