St. Barbara elementary and high school alumni, please fill out our Alumni Database.
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Jessica Groark, Class of 2017
Jessica is a 2017 St. Barbara graduate and currently attends De La Salle. In her first year at De La Salle, she was on the Freshman A team and JV team during tournaments, and received an award for being the best defensive player. She was voted Meteor of the Match four times and continues to excel in the sport. She also currently plays volleyball for the Chicago Elite Club. During her freshman year, she was on the A and B honor roll, attributing her academic success to St. Barbara School. Her mother, Cheri, is a 1987 graduate of St. Barbara Elementary School and a 1991 graduate of St. Barbara High School.
Keep up the great work, Jessica! Best of luck in high school and beyond.
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Eljay Raya, Class of 2017
Eljay Raya (Class of 2017 Valedictorian), and some of his classmates from Whitney Young presented a school project they created called “Eukay Animals”. The project’s purpose is to educate about the importance of preserving endangered species. They have published a magazine and developed materials children can use to create bird feeders. They donate all project proceeds to various organizations that help endangered species. Follow them on twitter for more information: https://twitter.com/EukayAnimals.
To donate, please click here: https://www.gofundme.com/wy-mycelia-endangered-animals
Thank you Eljay, Ana, Ursula, Ysabelle and Kaitlynn for bringing awareness to such an important issue. (April 2016)
Ashley Staszak & Lucas Garcia, Class of 2016
Congratulations to Ashley Staszak and Lucas Garcia (Class of 2016) for their induction into the St. Laurence National Honor Society. They have consistently excelled academically and have provided valuable service to their peers and the entire St. Laurence community.
Keep up the great work, Ashley and Lucas! You make your St. Barbara family proud! (April 2018)
Anthony Skokal, Class of 2015
We are pleased to spotlight Anthony Skokal, a 2015 graduate of our school! Anthony is currently a junior at St. Rita High School. As part of a school project, Anthony started Operation Blue Light as a way of supporting our brave police officers. Along with his classmate, Joe Kaput, Anthony sells blue lightbulbs to establish a visible show of support for our men and woman in blue. All of the proceeds go to the Chicago Police Memorial Foundation. Anthony’s father, Tony (Class of 1981), is a police officer and graduate of St. Barbara School. Joseph, his younger brother, graduated from St. Barbara in 2016, and Vince, his baby brother, is a St. Barbara 5th grader. Joe Kaput’s father, Steven (Class of 1983) and Gina Caltagtrione (Class of 1991) are both St. Barbara alumni. Great job Anthony and Joe and thank you for supporting our brave men and women! (March 2018)Yuchen Wang, Class of 2015Ziao Xiong, Class of 2016(featured in the Epoch Times)
Fr. Bradley A. Zamora, Class of 2002Meet Fr. Bradley A. Zamora, a 2002 St. Barbara graduate...in his own words!
"I’m a SWMP (single, white, male priest) who likes long walks with my praise music. Like everyone else in Grounded, I LOVE tacos, but also really any sort of Mexican food because well I am Mexican and my family makes THE BEST food. I like everything there is to music, whether creating, playing or listening to it. I’m a former member of the band, YOLO, the greatest seminary band ...you’ve never heard of. (Look us up on YouTube.) My priestly style is unrivaled by many as evidenced by my extensive hoodie collection (thanks Old Navy) and the boldly patterned socks on my size 13 feet. I am a proud sock-of-the-month member! My love of Liturgy and all things music has led me to my position as Director of Liturgy and Instructor in the Department of Liturgy and Music at the University of Saint Mary of the Lake and as Associate Pastor and Director of Liturgy at Holy Name Cathedral since 2014. As you can see, I’ve been busy but I love being a priest even more than I love these socks I’m wearing now." (March 2017)
Thanks Fr. Brad for that awesome bio! Many blessings to you and your ministry. To see his faculty bio, click on the following link: https://usml.edu/staff/rev-bradley-zamora/Emma Bunda, Class of 2015This week's Alumni Spotlight is Emma Bunda, a 2015 St. Barbara graduate. She is currently a sophomore at Marist High School. For almost 2 years now Emma has been working with the Holistic Riding Equestrian Therapy (HRET) team. The HRET program is designed to improve the quality of life physically, emotionally and socially for special needs children and adults and veterans afflicted with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Emma has a wonderful connection with the riders, from a 4 year old with Cerebral Palsy spastic Quadriplegia to adult riders with minor core instabilities or multiple physical and cognitive challenges.Emma is part owner of Baldy, a retired donated Chicago Mounted Police quarter horse named after a fallen Chicago police officer, Officer Leonard Baldy. Emma and Baldy have taken riders to the Special Olympics in Rockford for two years now, winning several gold medals. Emma is working toward becoming a PATH certified instructor and P.T.A. Emma also works at the Morgan Park Ice Rink on the weekends. She coaches for the Park District and the First Goal Foundation working with children, focusing on special needs children.Keep up the great work Emma! You make your St. Barbara family proud! (April 2017)
Robert Pickert, Jr, Class of 2013Bobby graduated from St. Barbara School in 2013 and is currently a senior at Mount Carmel High School. As a straight “A” student, he has been given the award of “Man of The Month” twice, has placed in 1st place in English, Spanish and Algebra 2 Trigonometry, and has been awarded High Honors with Distinction for three years in a row. He is currently a member of the National Honors Society, Student Council, and SADD Club and will be attending Dominican University this upcoming fall. He is employed at Tria Sorelle and @Fab Freddies and has worked there for three years now. He has also found a new passion for travel, having visited Italy and Greece last summer. He will be travelling to Spain, Switzerland and France this spring.
Bobby is also a published author! He has written a cookbook titled “The Adolescent Chef” which will be available for purchase next month. In the book, he shares his favorite dishes and introduces us to his culinary expertise. For more information about "The Adolescent Chef" find Bobby on The Adolescent Chef.
We are all very excited to see what the future holds for Bobby! (March 2017)Ricky Young, Class of 2015
Ricky, who is currently a sophomore at De La Salle Institute, has excelled at the sport of wrestling during the past two years. He recently placed 1st in the Class 2A Regionals and 4th in Class 2A Sectionals. He also earned the distinct opportunity of competing at the IHSA State Finals at the University of Illinois in Champaign. Not only did he show his Meteor pride, he also showed his BULLDOG pride at the event!
Way to go, Ricky! Your St. Barbara family is proud of your many accomplishments. We wish you success in everything you do! (February 2017)