Alumna of the Year
The Alumna of the Year Award is the most prestigious honor given by the Alumnae Association. First given in 1991, the award recognizes accomplished, compassionate, strong women who are leaders in their respective fields and represent the values and mission of Marian.
This year’s recipient, Celann LaGreca ’75, is no different.
Celann spent most of her career in the corporate world as an executive at Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Nebraska for more than 30 years, leading the areas of communications, advertising and public relations, and serving on the Senior Leadership Team. Prior to retiring from BCBSNE in 2012, she formed her own consulting business, The LaGreca Group, and continues to provide strategic planning, marketing and branding expertise to nonprofit clients.
Celann’s love for Marian and her commitment to its mission span many years as a student, alumna, volunteer and board member. She served on the Marian Marketing Committee for more than a decade and then chaired that committee while serving on the Marian Board of Directors a second time from 2011-2017.
Her passion for mentoring and advocating for women and for supporting education are evident as an M-Power mentor and in her community board service beyond Marian. Celann currently serves on the board of directors and executive committee for CUES, is a mentor at Sacred Heart School, and is on the Omaha Sister City Association board. Her extensive past board service included the Women’s Fund of Omaha and the Women’s Center for Advancement, and many other nonprofit organizations.
Celann is a magna cum laude Journalism/Public Relations graduate of Kearney State College, is professionally accredited by the Public Relations Society of American and is a graduate of Leadership Omaha and Leadership Nebraska. She served six years on the Nebraska State College Board of Trustees, chairing that board in 1991 when Kearney State College joined the University of Nebraska system.
Celann and her husband Dr. Tim Crowley have been married for nearly 30 years, are members of Sacred Heart Parish, and enjoy traveling and spending time with their three Havanese pups – Sophia, Elsa and Salvatore.
1993 Wilma Dugan Smith ’62
1994 Rose Fallon Roeder ’66
1995 Michelle Procopio Delisi ’74
1996 Barbara Gehringer ’82
1997 Rosemary Nolan Byam ’70
1998 Linda Hermanek Daly ’67
1999 Mary Lynn Coyle ’66
2000 Melanie Morrissey Clark ’84
2001 Dr. Rita Watson ’64
2002 Margaret Guziec Hoarty ’66
2003 Patricia A. Zieg ’67
2004 Dr. Amy Haddad ’71
2005 Dr. Mary Strom Hawkins ’69
2006 Marian’s 50th Anniversary
2007 LaVonne Jenson Piotrowski ’69
2008 Sr. Mary Gehringer, OSM ’66
2009 Dr. Theresa Townley ’82
2010 Nancy Mullen Oberst ’71
2011 Erin Grace ’91
2012 Sharon Walsh Carleton ’90
2013 Margaret Coyle Hershiser ’78
2014 Mary Higgins ’69
2015 Jeri Deras Regan ’72
2016 Connie Cavel ’68
2017 Shannan Neppl Brommer ’81