At a press conference, held on Friday, January 25th, on the Cotter Schools Campus, Cotter President, Sr. Judith Schaefer, O.P., PhD announced the public launch of the Centennial Campaign in support of Cotter Schools and Winona Area Catholic Schools. The announcement was made leading into Catholic Schools Week, which will be celebrated January 27- February 1, both locally and nationally.
“Next week our Catholic Schools in Winona will celebrate Catholic Schools Week. The national theme this year is “Raising the Standards.” During the week we will celebrate the gift of Catholic education, the faithfulness of our teachers, students, parents and benefactors, and highlight the quality and excellence of our schools and the choice we offer in the Winona community,” said Schaefer.
The campaign is intended to pay honor to the long tradition of excellence in Winona’s Catholic schools by focusing on projects that will enhance and raise the standards of excellence for current and future students. Campaign initiatives are targeted at providing a holistic approach to education for Cotter and WACS students. Projects include technology upgrades, science lab enhancements, building maintenance and restoration needs, specific programming targeted at system-wide enrollment, and the creation of a Student Achievement Center that will house a newly constructed auxiliary gymnasium, on-grade restrooms, and a student and community commons.
The Cotter President announced the campaign goal as $8.1million.
Schaefer shared, “As a private school, our future depends entirely on the generosity and sacrifice of our families, friends and benefactors. I am extremely pleased to announce that during the silent phase of our campaign, we have received gifts and pledges in excess of $5.1 million. I want to publically thank our amazingly generous benefactors and promise them that we will use their resources strategically and carefully.”
A committee comprised of dedicated Cotter alumni, community members and staff, led by Campaign Chair, Ted Biesanz and Gifts Committee Chair, Jack Richter played a key role in securing the initial $5.1 million.
“My goal as president is to continue to building on the firm foundations of the past and meet the challenges and needs of the future. Our students – the citizens and leaders of tomorrow- deserve nothing less,” Said Schaefer.
Schaefer and the school community are actively seeking support to raise the needed funds to complete the projects. Those who would like to contribute or would like more information can contact the Cotter Advancement office at 507-453-5102.