Who's Who on the GMA Board?
We are privileged to have many dedicated, accomplished and experienced individuals on our Board of Trustees. Their gift of time and talents are much appreciated by the Gwynedd-Mercy Academy community.
- Mr. Al Chiaradonna, Board Chairperson
- Dr. Gabriel Bikah
- Sister Patricia Carroll, RSM
- Ms. Anne Casavecchia
- Mrs. Theresa Fasano
- Sister Georgia Greene, RSM
- Mrs. Bridget Keeley
- Mrs. Dawn Kownacki, Esq.
- Sister LaVerne King, RSM
- Mrs. Ellen Roberts
- Mrs. Mia Rosati Marko '04
- Mrs. Colleen Stratton
- Mrs. Suzanne Swartley
Mr. Al Chiaradonna, Board Chairperson
Education has made a tremendous difference in my life. My mother and father never had the opportunity to attend college, but constantly preached to me about the importance of education. I lost my mother when I was 11 and my father just before I graduated from college. My education and the support of my family propelled me forward. My wife and I have been able to share the gift of education with our three children, Michael (GMA '13), Anna and Ellie. All of our children attended Gwynedd-Mercy Academy Elementary at one point during their educational journey. Being part of Gwynedd-Mercy Academy Elementary helped them grow in mind, body and spirit. Being a Trustee allows me to give back to an institution and community that has given so much to me and my family.
I am an adjunct professor at Villanova and have been for the past 18 years. I sit on several educational boards. As a result, I have a firsthand view of education and the changes taking place at the grade school, high school and college levels. Additionally, I am a business executive at SEI and have a strong understanding of the needs for financial stability and the responsibility of the stewardship of institutions.
Dr. Gabriel Bikah
My son (GMA Class of '15) attended GMA from K through 8 and received a great education from an excellent school. I decided to serve on the Board because I wanted to provide whatever input I could into ensuring that GMA had a great future and continues to provide children with a great education for generations to come.
I went to Catholic Schools all my life (except college) and I think I understand the culture and the values that a catholic education provides. I come from the pharmaceutical industry where we make products that save lives, not very different from education where the objective is to build up lives by providing knowledge and guidance. I think I can bring the rigor of the corporate world and the can-do attitude of a very competitive industry, to the GMA board and help the school become even more competitive compared to similar institutions. I can use my network within my company and the local community to promote the benefits of a GMA education.
Sister Patricia Carroll, RSM
When I was invited to consider joining the Gwynedd-Mercy Academy Elementary Board of Trustees, I reflected on some words of the school’s Mission: built on Mercy, rooted in Gospel values, committed to excellence. My own educational experience (grades 1-12) was built on Mercy and supported by my parents’ rootedness in Gospel values. I was excited to become part of a team committed to developing excellence of mind, body and spirit with a new generation of students.
I bring to the Board over 40 years’ experience in education and administration both at the elementary and high school levels. In addition, my experience on other education and health care Boards has enriched my understanding of sponsorship and my dedication to mission.
Ms. Anne Casavecchia
Mrs. Theresa Fasano
Sister Georgia Greene, RSM
I have spent over 40 years in the ministry of Catholic education. Those years and experiences have only solidified for me the urgency of providing the type of education offered to our students at Gwynedd-Mercy Academy. It is essential that this generation and generations to come are steeped in the gospel of Jesus, are imbibed with the charism of Mercy, and are provided education for leadership and service. Our
ministry as a Board of Trustees ensures that these students will have access to this education and will go forward to make a significant difference in our world. I am honored to be part of this exceptional institution.
Almost all of my years in ministry have been spent in Catholic Education. Most of those years were as a principal. I spent six years as principal of GMAE from 1974-80. Because of those years, I have a special place in my heart for the school and its continued growth. During my eighteen years at the St. Charles Mission School, located on the San Carlos Apache Indian Reservation in Arizona, my responsibilities included fundraising and grant writing to keep the school financially viable. Presently I serve on the Board of Trustees Institutional Advancement Committee and I lend those many years of experience to GMAE.
Mrs. Bridget Keeley
It is a great honor to be granted a position with the Gwynedd-Mercy Academy Elementary Board of Trustees. I am an active community member with a background in marketing and a passion for children and the power of education. I would love the chance to give back by lending my advisory skills to an establishment as prestigious and honorable as GMAE. A global marketer by profession, I have extensive experience in all forms of strategic marketing including: positioning/branding, PR, thought leadership, integrated digital marketing, communication, events and measurement/metrics. But, my greatest passion and most important job, is being a mom to 3 amazing kids (9, 7 and 2). As a parent, I have been fortunate to be very engaged in their schooling, educational programs and various extracurricular activities. While I feel my personal and professional talents and advisory skills could benefit the school, I whole-heartedly believe such an opportunity will bring even greater value and purpose to me and I'm truly honored to be part of the GMAE community.
Mrs. Dawn Kownacki, Esq.
Previously, I served on an education board for my local community high school. I currently am an adjunct at a local College where catholic spiritual values are built into the learning environment. I am a licensed attorney in PA and have over twenty years of experience in Human Resources.
Sister LaVerne King, RSM
Mrs. Ellen Roberts
Mrs. Mia Rosati Marko '04
Mrs. Colleen Stratton
As a proud member of the Mercy community and parent of two GMA Elementary grads ('15 and '17), I am very grateful for the exceptional education our girls received. We are now watching them excel at the High School. I would like to see the education continue to create exceptional future leaders.
As a strong supporter of STEM careers for both men and women, a leader in diversity and inclusion and an executive at SEI, I believe I can bring a unique business and human resources perspective to the board. As a Senior Leader, I view the Mercy Catholic Foundation as even more relevant today.
Mrs. Suzanne Swartley
Education has always been very important to me, and as a mother to three young children, I am constantly reminded how important it is to have a well-rounded, whole education. I cherish the experiences I've had through learning, and look forward to helping Gwynedd-Mercy Academy Elementary students fulfill their potential.
I bring many years of finance experience to the board. I began my career in asset management at Morgan Stanley, and have spent the last ten years in corporate finance at Comcast Corporation, where I partner with business owners in financial planning, analysis and operations. I am a CFA Charterholder and have a passion for diversity and inclusion in education and the workplace.
It is an honor to join the GMAE board - I am excited for the opportunity to help!