Regina honors alumni

From left are Mike Foley ’82, Brad Ratliff ’05, Marlene (Wombacher) Frantz ’68, Paul Maske, Katy Synan ’05, Ann (West) Browning ’82, Matt Pacha ’78, and Sister Mary Frances Michalec.

IOWA CITY – Six Regina graduates and two honorary alumni received Regina Catholic Education Center alumni awards Sept. 27.
Marlene (Wombacher) Frantz ’68 and Mike Foley ’82 received Distinguished Alumni Awards. Frantz graduated from Regina in May 1968 and returned in January 1969 as the Regina High School secretary, a post she has held for 45 years.  During that time, she has worked for 15 of the 16 secondary principals and witnessed 2,745 students walk across the graduation stage.
Foley, who holds a Ph.D. in electrical engineering, has been a private technology consultant and employee of companies such as Microsoft, Nintendo and Bluetooth. He is recognized as a leader and visionary in the wireless industry, receiving numerous awards for creativity, strategic planning and leadership. He was the executive director of Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG) from 2004-2012.
Ann (West) Browning ’82 and Matthew Pacha ’78 received the Alumni Appreciation Award.
Browning has been an educator for the past 26 years, 21 of them with the Iowa City Community School District where she currently serves as principal of Elizabeth Tate High School.  She volunteers for numerous community non-profits, and at Regina, she has served as volunteer coach, Booster Club president and coordinator for many fundraisers.
Pacha, former vice-president of Hawkeye Medical Supply (22 years) and current director of Cedar Rapids Operations for Pearson, has served the greater Iowa City area in volunteer civic capacities throughout his adult life. His Regina volunteer activities range from athletics to human resource to building and grounds, to administration (Regina Board of Education member/president).
Katy Synan ’05 and Brad Ratliff ’05 received the Outstanding Young Alumni Award.
Synan received undergraduate and master’s degrees from Creighton University in Omaha. Prior to beginning her master’s in educational studies, Synan made a three-year commitment to the Magis Catholic Teacher Corps. In 2012, she received Creighton’s Dr. Edward O’Connor Award, given to a student who exemplifies leadership, faith, service to others and ongoing giving of self.
Ratliff holds degrees in criminal justice, law enforcement and science. He is currently a critical care paramedic. In 2010, Ratliff provided volunteer emergency medical care in Haiti following the 7.0 magnitude earthquake. In the States, he spearheaded drives at churches and Regina to replenish clinics and schools in Haiti. Ratliff returned to Haiti in 2012 to provide first responder training to ambulance service personnel.
Sister Mary Frances Michalec and Paul Maske received the Distinguished Honorary Alumni Award.
Sr. Michalec entered the Notre Dame Sisters in 1955. She spent many years as an elementary teacher and administrator (her master’s degree is from Boston College). She came to Regina in 1986, where she served as a teacher for eight years and religious education coordinator for 18 years.  In 2013, she accepted a position in her home parish of St. Ludmila in Cedar Rapids.
Maske has been credited for personally raising over $1 million for Regina as a volunteer and volunteer coordinator for special event fundraisers. He also served in various board and committee leadership roles at the school.  He served as second vice president and branch manager for First National Bank’s Towncrest Branch for 33 years.

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