Diocese of Rockville Centre


ROCKVILLE CENTRE, N.Y. – May 6, 2010 – Bernadette Casey-Smith, a resident of Roslyn Harbor, is one of three outstanding people will be being honored at the Tomorrow’s Hope Foundation “Stars for Students Gala”.  The annual gala will be held on Friday, May 21, 2010 at the RXR Plaza in Uniondale. [See Bernadette’s biography at end]  Joseph A. Ferrara of Rockville Centre (St. Raymond’s Parish, East Rockaway) and Ralph A. Nappi of Albertson (St. Peter’s Parish, Port Washington and St. Aidan’s Parish, Williston Park) are also being honored.  The Tomorrow’s Hope Gala is the primary fundraiser for the Tomorrow’s Hope Foundation. 

Bernadette Casey-SmithTomorrow’s Hope Foundation was founded in 2005 by the Most Reverend William Murphy, Bishop, Roman Catholic Diocese of Rockville Centre.  It is a not-for-profit organization that has succeeded in raising money and enrollment in Catholic elementary schools on Long Island.  The mission of the foundation is to ensure the excellence as well as the continuance of Catholic elementary schools on Long Island, by increasing awareness and by providing scholarships and program funding for the needs of students and schools throughout the diocese. 

“The success of the gala is of particular importance this year given the challenging economic climate,” said Sr. Joanne Callahan, O.S.U., Superintendent of Schools, Diocese of Rockville Centre.  “We have so many parents wanting to enroll their children in our fine schools, but they just don’t have the means to do so.  The gala and other activities of the Tomorrow’s Hope Foundation are created to help these parents and ultimately their children receive the Catholic school education they desire.” 

The gala will begin at 6:30 p.m. with a cocktail hour followed by dinner from 7:30-10:30 p.m.  There will be a silent and live auction with dozens of items.

“The Tomorrow’s Hope Foundation has raised funds for innovative programs in a number of areas such as technology,” said Lewis Ranieri, chairman, Tomorrow’s Hope Foundation.  “But, our main focus is providing scholarships to students in the Catholic elementary schools in the Diocese [Nassau and Suffolk counties].  In four years, the Foundation has provided $6.6 million in scholarships to 4,400 students.  The gala is our largest single fundraising event for the Children’s Scholarship Fund.”

Last year, the Tomorrow’s Hope Foundation distributed over $1.75 million in scholarships to over 1,500 students.  Currently the Foundation is reviewing over 2,000 applications from students seeking financial assistance hoping to attend a Catholic elementary school. 

There are 57 Catholic elementary schools and 11 Catholic high schools serving more than 32,000 students in the diocese which encompasses Nassau and Suffolk counties.

Bernadette Casey-Smith

Bernadette Casey-Smith, daughter of the late William J. Casey, former Director of Central Intelligence, and Sophia Casey, is a graduate of St. Joseph’s Academy in Brentwood and Good Counsel College in White Plains.  She was honored by Saint Patrick’s College Maynooth in Ireland with a Ph.D. in Philosophy Honors Causa. 

Ms. Casey-Smith is chair of the William and Sophia Casey Foundation.  In addition she has or is serving on numerous boards of directors including the Irish Educational Development Foundation (Secretary) which serves Saint Patrick’s College at Maynooth, The Henry Viscardi School at the National Center for Disability Services, The William J. Donovan Foundation and the National Historical Intelligence Museum.  She also serves on the Advisory Committee of New Yorkers for Choice in Education and is a member of the Board of Trustees of Young Americans for Freedom (Reagan Ranch).

Ms. Casey-Smith is a member of St. Mary’s parish, Roslyn and is a Dame of Malta, Holy Sepulchre and a member of the Order of St. Gregory the Great.  Bernadette and her husband Owen, live in Roslyn Harbor and in Palm Beach, Florida. 


About The Catholic Church of Long Island
The Diocese of Rockville Centre (www.drvc.org) was formed in 1957 and covers 1,198 square miles in Nassau and Suffolk Counties.  The diocese serves approximately 1.5 million Catholics (total population in both counties is approximately 3.4 million).  There are 133 parishes in 115 towns.  Last year over 17,000 baptisms, 19,000 confirmations, 17,000 first communions and 3,000 marriages took place in the diocese.  There are approximately 20,000 students in Catholic elementary schools; 13,000 in secondary schools and 3,500 in higher institutions.  There are 69 Catholic elementary and high schools and one Catholic college in the diocese.  Catholic Health Services of Long Island consists of five hospitals, three nursing homes, a community-based home for those with special needs and a hospice.  In 2008, Catholic Charities assisted more than 55,485 individuals who are poor, vulnerable and disadvantaged on Long Island.  (12/08).

CONTACT: Kimberly Short
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