Hundreds of alumni, past parents, friends, teachers and staff reunited at DeLaSalle over the three days of Alumni Weekend 2021 to reflect on their shared experience, celebrate their classmates, and support today’s students and teachers. The reasons people come to the island may vary at the start, but what keeps them connected to the island over all of these years is our special community.
The August 5-7 Alumni Weekend also marked a return to the DeLaSalle campus following a COVID-reduced event in 2020. The Hall of Fame induction ceremony included two classes of honorees and class reunions featured alumni who graduated in years ending in 0, 1, 5, or 6.
Alumni Weekend kicked off with our annual Hall of Fame induction ceremony in which we recognize those Islanders who have made a lasting impact on our community. This year we inducted nine groups or individuals, a larger than usual number because we do not hold a ceremony in 2020 due to COVID-19. This year, more than 375 people attended.
Established in 1989, the DeLaSalle Hall of Fame perpetually honors and commemorates those graduates and friends whose leadership and achievements in the areas of Christian faith, education, service, and athletics have made an outstanding and enduring impact on DeLaSalle and its tradition. Because of what these award recipients have done in their lives and for DeLaSalle, it can be said that DeLaSalle would not be the same without them.
Barry and Barb (Loso) ‘78 Lieske
Barry and Barb (Loso) ’78 Lieske deserve recognition individually for their contributions to the field of education and collectively for the selfless example of love and passion they provide. Barb found her calling in special education and served students in the Lakeville school district for 35 years. Barry, meanwhile, holds the honor as DeLaSalle’s longest serving employee, retiring after 41 years of exemplary leadership on the Island. He cherished working in a faith community and serving underrepresented students in multiple administrative roles, including guidance counselor, dean of students, principal, and president. Enrollment and fundraising expanded under Barry’s presidency as did his commitment to providing modern, relevant facilities. Barry’s vision led to the construction of the new “D” building, Albers Atrium, LL Gray Gym, and upgrades of existing spaces. Together, the two raised three daughters who all graduated from DeLaSalle. The Lieskes continue to volunteer in local church and school communities.
Established in 1989 to recognize and honor select DeLaSalle graduates and friends whose current efforts and achievements uniquely reflect St. John Baptist de La Salle’s vision of Christian leadership, support of education, and service for the world in which they live. Their continued efforts are worthy of honor, support, and gratitude.
Dr. Mark Dienhart ‘71
Dr. Mark Dienhart ’71 exemplifies a modern version of St. John Baptist de La Salle in the way he has committed his life to the educational benefit of others. As the current CEO of the Richard Schulze Family Foundation, he is responsible for allocating over $50 million annually to benefit students in the Twin Cities and beyond. His leadership in philanthropy is transformational. He served on the DeLaSalle Board of Trustees, including a term as Board Chair, providing valuable wisdom and management acumen to his alma mater as the school grew during the leadership of Brother Michael Collins ’55, FSC and Barry Lieske. His portfolio also includes service as the executive vice president and chief operating officer of the University of St. Thomas and as the athletic director for the University of Minnesota. Mark holds a unique position as the only two-time inductee into the DeLaSalle Hall of Fame. He was an inaugural recipient of the Roberts-Reinhart Award in 1995 for his athletic accomplishments as both an All-American athlete and college championship coach.
Established in 1995, the Roberts-Reinhart Award honors those Hall of Fame recipients who have earned special recognition in the area of athletics. It is named in honor of George Roberts and Dick Reinhart, DeLaSalle Hall of Fame Inductees and coaching legends.
Pat Pavelko ’70 is the ultimate competitor for whom athletics has always been part
of his DNA. It showed as a three-sport athlete in his four years at DeLaSalle: He quarterbacked the football team in the fall, started as a guard and leading scorer for the basketball team in
the winter, and played as a starting pitcher and shortstop on the baseball team in the spring. Pat continued to play football at the University of St. Thomas, where he was a three-year starting quarterback and two-year team captain. Pat credits his participation in sports with teaching him the values of discipline and work ethic—lessons that he would instill in young athletes he coached and mentored after his playing days had ended. Pat coached the secondary on two state championship football teams— for Edina West in 1978 and Eden Prairie in 2000. He has remained a loyal supporter of DeLaSalle and the University of St. Thomas, choosing to give back to schools that provided him with his successful start in life.
Cindy Schlafmann has dedicated her life to ensuring that Islander athletes are healthy and ready for competition as DeLaSalle’s athletic trainer for the past 31 years. Even more remarkable is that Cindy has contributed her time to DeLaSalle on top of her day job as a physical therapist. What started as a part-time side job with the football program has developed into a deep DeLaSalle connection, working with athletes and coaches across multiple sports. Cindy is lauded by coaches, athletes, and parents for providing her treatment in a caring, compassionate, and professional manner and for always maintaining open lines of communication with students and their families. In addition to serving as athletic trainer, Cindy has coached in the track and field program, including two-and-a-half years as the head coach. She believes being part of the Islanders’ success has been an honor—but we are the ones honored by her exemplary career of service.
Dave Peterson ’83
Dave Peterson ’83 holds a special place in the history of DeLaSalle basketball. Dave admits basketball wasn’t his first love (he wanted to be a boxer), but he heeded the advice of coaches and friends to continue playing the sport and then became one of the top-ranked players in the state. The 6-foot-5 All-Conference star averaged 15 rebounds a game and had a 15- to 18-foot jump shot that helped him average 22 points a game as a three-year starter at De. As captain, Dave led the Islanders to our second MSHSL state tournament his senior year. Dave was named to the All-State team and was a finalist for the coveted Mr. Basketball Award. More than 50 colleges recruited him before he signed on as a Division 1 player with the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay, leading the Phoenix as one of their top scorers for two seasons. Anyone who meets Dave discovers his humility and his concern for others. He currently serves as a driver for an addiction treatment center and has regularly volunteered at Sharing and Caring Hands and other organizations.
1971 State Qualifying Baseball Team
The 1971 state qualifying baseball team represents the best in baseball of that era. Many of the teammates grew up together, attending the parochial schools that fed DeLaSalle and playing baseball on American Legion teams. Players on the ’71 squad credit Coaches Joe Shrake and
Kent Evans for much of their success. Joe was an intense coach who one player described as the “Herb Brooks coach” of DeLaSalle while Kent provided calm leadership. Together the two drew on their own baseball experience to develop a team with strong pitching and solid hitting.
The ’71 team advanced to the state tournament and several of the players went on to play baseball in college and professionally, including some who signed on to the hometown Minnesota Twins. Many players remain in touch with each other to this day and share fond memories at the annual Thanksgiving party hosted by Mike Casey ’71.
Coach Joe Shrake • Tommy Joe Peterson ’73 • Tim Fristrom ’73 • Rick Rouleau ’73
1999 State Championship Football Team
The 1999 football team holds the record as the only DeLaSalle team to win a Minnesota State High School League state championship, even though several other squads have advanced deep in the tournament since De joined the MSHSL in 1975. Under the direction of Coach Tony Johnson, players on the ’99 team saw each other as “family,” their motto for the year. They “finished the job” in their run to the title, using the talents of several future Division 1 and NFL stars to overcome Minnewaska in the state semifinal and jump all over St. Michael-Albertville with a 28-7 state championship victory at the Metrodome. The All-State team included defensive lineman Derreck Robinson and defensive back Dominique Sims; linebacker Jared Newberry earned All-State honorable mention. In addition to their collegiate and professional sports accolades, several players on the team have distinguished themselves as lawyers, doctors, and entrepreneurs.
Coach Ray Holton • Justin Lentz ’01 • Kristopher Miller
Established in 2018, the Brother Michael Collins Award honors those Hall of Fame recipients who have earned special recognition in the area of fine arts. By virtue of their talent, vision, and commitment, recipients have chronicled our lives in a manner that enriches our cultural values and identity. The award reflects the inspirational advocacy and vision of Brother Michael Collins, FSC `55, an artist, teacher, leader and mentor throughout his life.
No one has had a more profound impact on the fine arts at DeLaSalle over the past three decades than Mark Capecchi. During Mark’s 35-year career at DeLaSalle from 1985-2020 ,he nurtured a love of music and made music accessible to all students regardless of their ability. His concern for each student made him a favorite teacher and admired colleague—and his impact is heard today in the vocal and instrumental sounds of several of his students who have pursued professional careers in music. Mark co-directed 23 musical theater productions at DeLaSalle, provided musical accompaniment at school liturgies (including the opening Mass for the NCEA national convention in Minneapolis and the 2012 funeral Mass for Brother Michael Collins ’55, FSC), led the pep band to rally Islanders at countless state tournaments, and created the orchestra program at De. The annual Christmas and spring concerts always drew a full house and often included many alumni who made it a point to return to see their beloved teacher and join in the festive sounds. Mark taught from a multicultural perspective and incorporated music from multiple genres and from all parts of the world. He has earned both the Distinguished Lasallian Educator Award and the Liemandt Excellence in Teaching Award. Mark now enjoys retirement with his wife, Mickey, and their family.
This year, the Alumni and Friends Golf Tournament took to the links of Phalen Golf Course in St. Paul. Over 140 people golfers joined us in groups of four and five to reconnecting with old friends and meet new ones. Teams played a scramble format and competed for top prizes. Thanks to all who participated!
The weekend culminated with alumni reunion celebrations on August 7. The evening began with an alumni Mass, celebrated by school chaplain, Fr. Kevin Kenney ‘78, Fr. Jerome Fehn ‘70, and Fr. Stanley Sledz ‘61. Alumni from graduating classes dating back six decades then reunited with their classmates to tour the school, share memories, and interact with current students. The Classes of 1970 and 1971 celebrated a combined 50th golden anniversary.