Diocesan Priest Receives Distinguished Alumni Award
October 20, 2017

DUBUQUE, Iowa—Father David Beauvais was among five Loras College alumni who received the 2017 Distinguished Alumni Awards during the college’s homecoming on Oct. 7.

Father Beauvais, a 1958 graduate who earned a bachelor’s degree in history, received the Humanitarian award. Individuals and organizations earn this honor for their lifetime of achievements in making their community a better place.

After graduating from Loras, Father Beauvais attended St. Mary’s Seminary in Baltimore and was ordained to the priesthood in 1962. He served in many parishes and diocesan positions.

He obtained a master’s degree in social work from Loyola University in Chicago and served for several months as associate director and then as director of Catholic Charities from 1972-1982.

He retired in 2006, but continues to assist the Rockford community and beyond.

He has worked with “Hope for Haitians” over the last 15 years, traveling to that impoverished country several times. He also serves on Rockford-area boards including Carpenter’s Place, Family Counseling Services and Janet Wattles Mental Health Center.

In 2016, Father Beauvais received the Rockford community’s Excalibur Award.

Father Beauvais was nominated for the Humanitarian award by Richard Kunnert, also a 1958 Loras College graduate.

“His ministry has covered much ground (including) pastoral, administrative, and service,” Kunnert said in his nomination. “During his time as pastor (at St. James Church, Rockford), he was involved in neighborhood development by being part of the River District and did joint projects with Trinity Lutheran Church, the Cornucopia Food Pantry being a prime example. Father David is always willing to serve all parts of the community, not just the Catholic community.”

He cited Father Beauvais also for “initiat(ing) the formation of the Rockford Diocese Foundation as a means to develop funds for charitable causes in the diocese” and for how his “service to his church and community continues in his retirement” including participation in the Yeshua Catholic International Leadership Institute, a Rockford based leadership institute teaching servant leadership through Catholic Vision for Leading Like Jesus (CV-LLJ).

Kunnert notes also that his priest-friend “continues as a practicing social worker. His schedule is packed. He counsels people of all denominations and fees are never an issue,” and that he often is “the priest of choice for funerals.”

Kunnert concluded his nomination by saying, “Father David has accepted the challenge of inculcating service into his heart, and anyone who knows him is the beneficiary of his commitment to loving his fellow human beings.”

Other 2017 award recipients were: Kathy (Hopinkah) Hannan, 1983 graduate (Professional Achievements award); Imal Mohamed-Pedriana, 2000 graduate (Young Alumni award); Bob Tucker, Ph.D., former head men’s and women’s track and field coach and chair of the Physical Education Department (Campus Contribution award); and Charlie Weepie, 1953 graduate (Amicus award for philanthropy).