Good news


Michael Rooney of Hinsdale has been named the 2020 valedictorian at Nazareth Academy in LaGrange Park.

In addition to his academic achievements, Rooney was fully involved in the life of the school. He was captain of the tennis and golf teams, as well as qualifying for IHSA State competition in both sports during his high school career. He was an Executive Council member of Senior Board, co-president of the Service Team and a retreat leader.

“Michael’s contributions to our school community during his time as a student are remarkable. He is an absolutely outstanding student, fine athlete and impactful leader. He will undoubtedly make an impact on our world in the years to come,” Principal Therese Hawkins said.

Rooney spoke highly of his experience at Naz.

“Nazareth helped foster my growth as a student by providing a very challenging course load as well as teachers and guidance counselors who guided and pushed me past what I conceived to be my potential, all the while looking after me as a person,” he said.

Rooney also received several other distinctions: Illinois State Scholar; Mu Alpha Theta; National English Honor Society; National Honor Society (president); Spanish Honor Society; Religious Studies Award, Nazareth Male Scholar-Athlete of the Year and ESCC Scholar-Athlete; American Legion School Award; 2019-20 AP Physics, Mathematics and Service awards; and State Math Competition qualifier.

Rooney has accepted an appointment to the United States Military Academy at West Point.

In response to the stay-at-home mandate, Nazareth Academy delayed its graduation Mass and commencement until July 26. Senior awards were announced May 15.


The Hinsdale-Clarendon Hills Chapter of The National Charity League Inc. is proud to recognize 18 young women of the 2020 senior class and their mothers. Together, they have volunteered close to 3,000 hours over the past five years supporting 16 local philanthropies.

We celebrate the contributions of 2020 graduates: Mary Claire Arbor, Olivia Beargie, Molly Bruns, Kendall Butler, Emilie Chadwell, Gabrielle Conidi, Grace Deering, Genevieve Haarlow, Jessica Joy, Aly Koranda, Emily Lewis, Paige McMahon, Adrianna Minnella, Abby Rigazio, Katie Sharp, Elliana Teuscher, Madeline Van Houtte and Taylor Ward.

The National Charity League Inc. is a philanthropic organization of mothers and daughters committed to improving local communities through hands-on volunteerism, leadership development and cultural experiences.


The first three rounds of Regional Rock Stars have been named.

They are

• the Hinsdale Junior Women’s Club

• Julianne Rizzo, RN, Oasis Senior Advisors

• Hillary Renderman and Ben Welch, La Grange Area Restaurant Take-out & Delivery Facebook group

• Mayor Frank Trilla, village of Willowbrook

• Anna Padron Sikora, Pillars Community Health

• Kendall Sullivan, FocusOm Yoga

• Olivia Wirtz and Chris Vasti, Lyons Township High School seniors

• Bradley Hides, Bradley Hides Music

• Maureen Bresnahan, La Grange resident

• Steve Palmer, Palmer Place

Launched earlier last month, the Regional Rock Stars is a collaborative effort of CMF, Amita Health, the Hinsdale Chamber of Commerce, West Central Municipal Conference and the West Suburban Chamber of Commerce and Industry. The initiative tells the stories of neighbors, colleagues, co-workers and friends who are making a difference with acts of kindness, hope and gratitude during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“During this unprecedented time, we have experienced extraordinary acts of kindness, courage and service in our region,” said Greg DiDomenico, president and chief executive officer of Community Memorial Foundation. “Together with our partners, CMF is thrilled to recognize the neighbors and leaders who inspire us to be our best selves. Congratulations to the Regional Rock Stars.”

For more information on award winners or to make a nomination, visit