Photo compliments of Elaine Pardi Photography

Catholic Charities’ Spirit Circle members—Ron and Dianne Yanish were awarded the Philanthropist of the Year Award on November 13, 2019 at a luncheon hosted by the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP) of Southern Minnesota.

Ron and Dianne are loyal friends and supporters of the mission of Catholic Charities of Southern Minnesota. They were nominated for this prestigious and well-deserved honor by Mary Alessio—Director of Advancement for Catholic Charities.

As they were introduced at the reception by Mary, she spoke of Ron and Dianne’s humility in providing their time, talents, and treasures to those in need.  Mary reminded all that philanthropy is defined as love of mankind and that a commonality of great philanthropists is the fact that they have quietly experienced their own challenges and heartaches in life….they have a connection with those they extend compassionate generosity and they do it with enthusiasm. She mentioned that enthusiasm comes from a Greek word (entheos) meaning God within and that there is no couple who defines philanthropy and enthusiasm more eloquently that Ron and Dianne. “When I am with them I feel the grace of God alive within….changing our world through their great hearts.”

The list of compassion generosity provided to those in need by this couple includes helping establish the Dorothy Day Center in Rochester, building the Pax Christi Youth Center, and donating the chapel at Lourdes High School. Their goodness is truly transformative and has greatly blessed countless individuals and families. Congratulations Ron and Dianne! Heartfelt thanks for providing help and creating hope!