The Spokesman

The Excellence in Leadership Dinner: A Night of Legends

Lou+Holtz+and+Rod+Carew+shake+hands.
Lou Holtz and Rod Carew shake hands.

Lou Holtz and Rod Carew shake hands.

Lou Holtz and Rod Carew shake hands.

Joseph Beaird, Communications Editor

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For the 8th year in a row, Servite put on the Excellence in Leadership Dinner, an event full of inspirational speakers and valuable contributors to Servite’s legacy. Each year, Servite is blessed with talented and uplifting leaders. The year of Servite’s 60th anniversary was no different. On February 24th, hundreds of people within the Servite community gathered at the Hilton in Anaheim to learn leadership skills from iconic football coach Lou Holtz, MLB Hall of Famer Rod Carew, and Dr. J. Thomas Heywood ‘73.

 

Before the event even began, the hype for the dinner was uncontrollable. Servite’s Advancement office worked tirelessly in the months leading up to the event to make it a night to remember by exemplifying everything that Servite stands for. Alumni, parents, and even some volunteering students were excited to be a part of the event.

 

Servite was incredibly proud to host Lou Holtz, the former Notre Dame football coach. Leading 6 different football programs to bowl games and becoming a member of the football hall of fame, Holtz truly has a legendary sports career. Lou Holtz is known just as well for his amazing public speaking, faith, and being an inspirational writer. Guests were treated to a speech filled with wisdom, clever humor, and a big heart.  

 

Lou Holtz entertained guests by speaking of coaching experiences, his exciting life, and the importance of his family. Despite being 81 years old, the football legend has not slowed down at all; Holtz mentioned traveling and hopping planes constantly in the week prior to the dinner.

 

The biggest takeaway from Holtz’s talk was the importance of finding a role in community and purpose in life. Recognizing the greatness of Servite, Holtz emphasized how crucial it was for attendees to fully buy into what we have to offer. Lou Holtz allows us to see the greatness within ourselves, encouraging us to accomplish anything with the grace of God.

 

Students volunteering at the event were so honored to hear the speakers. Emilio Ashley ‘18, a member of Servite’s Select Choir, spoke about his gratitude for the opportunity to attend. “It was a great honor to sing in front of Lou Holtz, along with listening to what he said afterward about how music is a gift from God and how wonderful we sounded.” Not only were the students grateful, but each speaker felt blessed to be a part of the event as well.

 

Later on, the Distinguished Alumnus Award was given to Dr. Heywood, a Servite graduate who has become one of the leading experts in heart failure all across the nation. Guests couldn’t help but get emotional when the award was presented by one of his former patients, Rod Carew. The baseball legend had undergone successful heart surgery thanks to the breakthrough work of Heywood and fellow doctors. His surgery along with the life-saving operations on others was possible with the technology of an LVAD (Left Ventricular Assist Device).

 

Dr. Thomas Heywood’s has made an impact on countless lives. His example shows the opportunities open to Servite students to serve as a model for Christ. Heywood among many other alumni display the greatest attributes of the Servite community; service and selflessness. Servite cannot say thank you enough to our amazing guest speakers.

 

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The Excellence in Leadership Dinner: A Night of Legends