60 Wonderful Years Celebrated Alumni from throughout the decades, past and current faculty and staff, as well as current students and their families, gathered on the <strong>Bishop</strong> O’Dowd <strong>High</strong> <strong>School</strong> campus on March 25 to celebrate the school’s 60th anniversary. “<strong>The</strong> whole event was first class. So many alums kept telling me how grateful they were for the gift of their O’Dowd education, both academically and for its values and the self discipline it instilled. It was clear that O’Dowd’s reputation of excellence and care came in large part from the lives and skills of our graduates,” President Steve Phelps said. <strong>The</strong> day began with a Mass held in the large gymnasium concelebrated by former faculty member and O’Dowd Regent Fr. Jay Matthews, former faculty member Fr. Leo Dummer, OMI, and former principals Fr. Frank Wagner, OMI, and Fr. Ronald Schwenzer, CSB. Deacon Earl JOHson ’61 and Boyer and Joan August, both members of the Class of 1956, also participated. <strong>Bishop</strong> John Cummins, a former O’Dowd teacher and dean, and <strong>The</strong> 60th anniversary Mass was concelebrated by former faculty member and <strong>O'Dowd</strong> Regent Fr. Jay Matthews, former faculty member Fr. Leo Dummer, OMI, and former principals Fr. Frank Wagner, OMI, and Fr. Ronald Schwenzer, CSB. Deacon Earl JOHson ’61 and Boyer and Joan August, both members of the Class of 1956, also participated. Photo by Briana Loewinsohn. Enrollment is 120 Tuition and fees $100 4 THE DRAGON 1951 – O’Dowd is established as a co-institutional high school by the Archdiocese of San Francisco and opens in facilities provided by St. Louis Bertrand, with a staff of two diocesan priests and four Adrian Dominican Sisters. Fr. Mark J. Hurley serves as the first principal.
Archbishop Francis T. Hurley, brother of O’Dowd’s first principal Mark Hurley, were unable to attend due to illness. Fr. Jay linked the gospel reading ( John 12:24), which discusses the grain of wheat that dies and bears much fruit, to the growth of <strong>Bishop</strong> O’Dowd <strong>High</strong> <strong>School</strong> throughout the years. O’Dowd has been a place for seeds to grow and germinate, with the Diocesan priests and Adrian Dominican nuns, the Oblates of Mary Immaculate, the Basilians, and the current lay leadership all moving the school forward in a positive direction, he said. After Mass, the more than 300 event attendees enjoyed reminiscing in the small gym, where a Living Museum showcasing O’Dowd’s history was featured. A special display was devoted to <strong>Bishop</strong> James T. O’Dowd, the school’s namesake. <strong>The</strong> bishop’s great nephew, Paul O’Dowd, drove from New Mexico to join in the celebration. 1952 – Classes meet for the first time on the present campus. Extensive memorabilia displays in the Living Museum showcased <strong>Bishop</strong> <strong>O'Dowd</strong> <strong>High</strong> <strong>School</strong>'s history. Former faculty members attending the event included Cheryl Delahoussaye, Brad Goodhart, Jan Hagan, Matilda Ignacio, Eva Kastel, Mike Phelps, Joe Salamack and Sharon Stevenson. Lunch featured a Gold Dragon buffet, a “Dragon Dog” cart, a chocolate fountain, and an ice cream shop featuring a special commemorative flavor: O’Dowd Overload, made with Fentons vanilla and chocolate ice creams mixed with Honey Nut Cheerios (representing the “O” in O’Dowd) and included ribbons of caramel, Score candy bar pieces and malt balls. <strong>The</strong> wine and beer garden was also a highlight. Alumni enjoyed entertainment provided by the O’Dowd jazz band and had the opportunity to go on student-guided tours of the campus. 5 THE DRAGON Check the O’Dowd website for photos and videos of the 60th celebration. 1954 – <strong>The</strong> school’s first full-length play, “Murder in a Nunnery,” directed by Father Poggi, is staged.