St. Rita Students Earn Heeney Award, a 50-Year Tradition

Mike Heeney presents the Heeney Awards in honor of his father, a tradition since his freshman year in 1967.

By:  John Nee '93

In 1967, Mike Heeney was preparing for his freshman year at St. Rita when his father suddenly passed away.  Joseph Heeney had just been elected President of the St. Rita Father’s Club prior to his untimely death, so they decided to keep his legacy alive by creating the Heeney Award.

The award was started for the 1967-1968 school year and was originally given to the top four GPAs in each class for each semester.  It was later expanded to include any student who received straight A's in a semester.

Now in its 50th year of existence, the Heeney Awards are presented at a family mass in the St. Rita Shrine Chapel, and students who achieve straight A's are given $50 as an award for their hard work in the classroom.

Mike Heeney ’71 remains a huge part of the St. Rita Community, and was on hand last Sunday as the awards were presented to 56 St. Rita students, including:

Class of 2018:                     

Payton Condon, Osvaldo Gutierrez, Will March, Bryan Nieciak, Sean Smith

Class of 2019:

Zack Aleman, Quinn Eaheart, Salvador Guel, Kyle Gustafson, Michael Henze, Sam Macander, Myles Montaque, Kevin O’Hara, Liam Ohle, Dennis Paragas

Class of 2020:

Nick Adent, Brendan Breslin, Dan Burns, Ron Carone, Pat Cranley, Justin Darwin, Connor Earley, Ryan Fidler, Dalen Horace, Bryce Jackson, Jake Kuska, James Larkin, Jamie Meister, Jason Reis, Justin Rosenau, Juan Carlos Sanchez, Tim Smith, Luis Villasenor, Evan Wojcicki

Class of 2021:

Bobby Atkinson, Brandon Buday, Zach Carroll, Aidan Connolly, Desmond Dunn, Sean Galbraith, Tom Gikas, Tom Gleason, Kameren Havard, Cristian Herard, Kyle James, Mike Mixan, Noah O’Grady, Thomas Rooney, Zack Rotkvich, Eric Seo, Angel Valdes, Carson Vetor, Wenseslao Zavala