St. John Paul the Great Alumni Association was established in 2021. This committee is comprised of volunteers who are alumni of St. John Paul the Great Academy and its predecessors Sacred Heart School, St. Francis of Assisi School, St. Mary School, St. Peter School and St. Peter/St. Francis School. The group's primary objective is to support the Academy through fundraising, promotion and volunteerism.
Alumni of the Month
Steve Rusckowski and Mary Rusckowski PhD
The Alumni Association of St. John Paul the Great Academy is thrilled to announce the first sibling co-Alumni of the Month, Steven Rusckowski and Mary Rusckowski, Ph.D.
Steven and Mary attended St. Mary's Elementary School. Mary was a member of the inaugural 4th grade. Classes were held in the church basement the first year while the building was being completed. After graduating St. Mary’s, Steve and Mary attended Torrington High School.
Following high school, Mary went on to Albertus Magnus College, a Catholic private liberal arts college in New Haven, Connecticut, founded by the Dominican Sisters of St. Mary of the Springs. She majored in Biology with a minor in Chemistry, graduating cum laude in 1975.
In College she was President of the Science club and participated in the school theater, also during a winter break she had a student internship at the Yale School of Forestry, Greely Labs. Interests in the sciences led to graduate school at Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ leading to a PhD in Biochemistry. During this time, she did an internship at Colgate-Palmolive, in Piscataway, NJ.
Mary went on to post-doctoral training in the Department of Microbiology and Immunology at the Medical College of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, and later becoming a Research Instructor. She then started as a Research Affiliate at the University of Massachusetts Medical School in Nuclear Medicine and Radiology, where she is currently an Associate Professor. At UMMS she is Director of the Radiolabeling and Translational Imaging Core housing PET, SPECT, CT Ultrasound and Optical Cameras for research applications for both academic and corporate clients.
While at UMMS she has actively served on various Committees, including Faculty Council as Secretary, Vice Chair and Chair. She also organized the7th International Symposium on Radiopharmacology held in Boston, and was on the Planning Committee, for Radiopharmacokinetics for the Non-specialist program.
She is also on the University’s Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC), Radiation Safety Committee, Grant congruency Reviewer for IACUC, and has served on the Scientific Council, and Departmental Promotion Committee. While at UMMS she has mentored students in the NIH Research Summer Research Fellowship and in the High School Health Careers Program and been an interviewer for Medical School Admissions. Since 2012 she has served as an NIH Study Section Grant Reviewer.
She has authored 140 papers and holds three patents. She has presented her research at numerous national and international research conferences in Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging. Mary is an Editorial Board member for the Journal Nuclear Medicine and Biology, and reviewer for numerous journals in the field of Molecular Imaging.
Steve earned a Master of Science degree in Management from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Sloan School of Management and a Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering from Worcester Polytechnic Institute.
In May 2012, Steve joined Quest Diagnostics as President and Chief Executive Officer. He has focused on transforming the company, based on its compelling vision of “Empowering better health with diagnostic insights.” Under his leadership, the company has refocused on its core diagnostic information services business, sold non-core assets, delivered disciplined deployment, including share repurchases and acquisitions, and simplified its organizational structure to better serve customers by removing complexity, speeding decision making and empowering employees. He was elected Chairman of the Board in December 2016.
Prior to joining Quest Diagnostics, Steve was CEO of Philips Healthcare, which became the largest unit of Royal Philips Electronics under his leadership. He joined Philips in 2001 when it acquired the Healthcare Solutions Group he was leading at Hewlett-Packard/Agilent Technologies.
Steve is a member of the Board of Directors of the American Clinical Laboratory Association, and served as its Chairman from 2014 to 2017. He is also an Emeritus Director of Project Hope, a global health education and humanitarian assistance organization. He was recognized by the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation at their 13th Annual Dream Gala in 2015, was the recipient of the 2018 American Jewish Committee's Global Citizenship Award and was honored by the Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse (now known as Partnership to End Addiction). In addition, Worcester Polytechnic Institute featured Steve in their September 2020 Journal and was honored during the 2019 alumni weekend with the Robert H. Goddard Alumni Award for Outstanding Professional Achievement. Most recently, Steve received the Community Quarterback Award from the United Way of New York City and the Torrington High School Distinguished Alumnus Award in 2021.
Alumni of the Month
The Most Reverend Peter A. Rosazza, D.D.
The Alumni Association of St. John Paul the Great Academy is proud and honored to announce the Alumnin of the month, The Most Reverend Peter A. Rosazza, D.D.
Born in New Haven, Connecticut on February 13, 1935, Bishop Rosazza is the eldest child of the late Agatha (Dinneen) and Aldo Rosazza. He grew up in Torrington and was a member of St. Francis of Assisi School’s Class of 1948. He attended Torrington High School, graduating in 1952. After one year at Dartmouth College he entered St. Thomas Seminary in Bloomfield, Connecticut. Next he studied at St. Bernard Seminary in Rochester, New York, and completed his four-year concentration in theology at Seminare Saint-Sulpice in Paris, France. He was ordained a priest for the Archdiocese of Hartford in Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris on June 29, 1961.
Back in Connecticut he served as assistant pastor in the Church of St. Timothy in West Hartford and then was appointed to the faculty of St. Thomas Seminary where he taught French, Spanish and Italian.
In 1972 he became co-pastor of Sacred Heart Church in Hartford’s north end, the mother church of Hartford’s Hispanic Catholic community. In 1978 he was named auxiliary bishop to the Archbishop of Hartford by Pope Paul VI and was ordained bishop on June 24. He continued to minister at Sacred Heart until his transfer to Waterbury in 1981. In 1988 he was assigned to New Haven.
On February 2, 1997, Archbishop Cronin appointed him Episcopal Vicar for the Spanish speaking Catholics in the Archdiocese of Hartford.
He is a member of the National Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Committee for Social Development and World Peace and is liaison with Brazilian Catholics for the Committee on Migration and Refugees. He is also bishop advisor to the National Catholic Student Coalition. He is one of the founders of the Naugatuck Valley Project, a coalition of churches and labor union locals as well as ECCO (Elm City Congregations Organized), a community organization of 18 churches in the New Haven area. Also, he is one of the five bishops who drafted the U.S. Catholic Bishops’ Pastoral Letter on the U.S. Economy and Catholic Social Teaching.
Pope Benedict XVI accepted Bishop Rosazza’s resignation on June 30, 2010, after the Bishop submitted the customary letter of resignation on his 75th birthday, February 13, 2010.
Alumni of the Month
Monsignor Robert F. Tucker
The first Alumni of the Month is Monsignor Robert F. Tucker. Monsignor Tucker was born November 26, 1942. He grew up in Torrington and is a member of St. Francis of Assisi School's Class of 1956. He graduated from St. Bonaventure University and was ordained a priest within the Archdiocese of Hartford on May 23, 1970. He celebrated his Golden Anniversary in 2020. Also last year, Rev. Tucker was elevated to Monsignor Tucker.
He has served as pastor of St. Anthony of Padua Church in Litchfield for over 25 years. In 2013, he became the pastor of St. Thomas of Villanova Church in Goshen as well. In 2017, through the pastoral planning of the Archdiocese of Hartford, Msgr. Tucker became the pastor of Our Lady of Grace Church in Bantam. In December 2017, the three churches merged to form the St. Louis de Montfort Parish Corporation.
Monsignor Tucker has shared his devout faith with thousands over the years through his compassion, grace and humor. He lives with JOY and unselfishly PASSES IT ALONG.
We are extremely proud to count Monsignor Robert F. Tucker as an alum of St. John Paul the Great Parish.