Chapter History

The History of the San Diego Chapter

The San Diego – Imperial Valley Chapter began in July 1955 to serve the councils in two counties of the Diocese of San Diego, which diocese comprises the counties of San Diego, Imperial, Riverside and San Bernardino. In 1959 the Arrowhead – Desert Valley Chapter was formed for the benefit of the councils in Riverside and San Bernardino Counties. There were 19 councils in San Diego and Imperial counties constituting this chapter.
The Diocese of San Diego was founded in 1936 and the first Bishop, Most Reverend Charles F. Buddy, undertook in due time, the establishment of the University of San Diego. The Chapter at  its inception  made the University Library its chief project. An annual barbecue was  held and from this and other sources of receipts the Chapter reimbursed the diocese about half the cost of the library, which initially was $889,000.00. In addition the Chapter has made contributions to the book fund, and has supported the Newman Club movement.

Other ongoing major projects for the Chapter is the Annual Priest Golf Tournament:  A day for priests to socialize with each other,  enjoy a round of golf and dinner after the tournament.  In addition the Chapter’s Annual Priest and Religious Dinner has always been a big hit with priests, religious and deacons as all of them are invited to be the guests of the Knights for a dinner.  In 2014 added to the dinner was the recognition of outstanding altar servers in the diocese.  These boys and girls are nominated by their pastor and the top servers are guests of honor with their parents at the Priest and Religious Dinner.  In 2016 the chapter added recognition of any priest or religious celebrating their 25th or 50th Anniversary.

In 2015 under the leadership and vision of Chapter President John Bertrand the chapter took another step in their partnership with the diocese by taking on the Bishop Flores Scholars Program as a major project.  This program offers tuition grants to children to help them attend a Catholic School.  Bishop Flores had a vision that no child in the San Diego Diocese would be denied the opportunity to receive a Catholic Education regardless of their parent’s financial ability. The Bishop Flores Tuition Drive has become an annual program for the chapter.  The first drive in 2015 raised over $140,000 including a pledge from Terri Caster, president of A1 Storage, to match funds collected through Dec 1st up to $100,000.

The sister project of the Tuition Fund was the 2015 First Annual Catholic Education Banquet and Gala.  This event honored the hard work and dedication of the many teachers, staff and volunteers  in the Catholic Schools of the San Diego Diocese.  In addition it became a fund-raising event to help support the Bishop Flores Scholars Program.  In 2016 the Fund Raising was removed from the banquet and made a separate project.

In 2016 the chapter increased to 73 councils and 11 assemblies with over 8000 members.   The San Diego Diocese Chapter continues to work hard through their charitable events each year.  This was evident when Mar Toma Council raised over $650,000 in the fall of 2014 in a period of two weeks to support the Christians in Iraq and Syria who were being persecuted.  Their effort of human service to others in need brought them the International Award for the most outstanding community project in the entire Order of the Knights of Columbus worldwide.  They were honored by being presented this award along with the Chaldean Archbishop of Iraq at the 2015 International Convention in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

 

Presidents serving the San Diego Chapter:
2016 – 17    Kenneth Morris
2015 – 16    Rene Trevino
2014 – 15    John D. Bertrand
2013 – 14    Hugh Largey
2012 – 13    Joe Valdez
2011 – 12    Ernesto Edraisa
2010 – 11    Kamal Alsawaf
2009 – 10   Michael Brault
2008 – 09   +Frank Durazo
2007 – 08   Jack O’Rourke
2006 – 07    John Giltner
2005 – 06    Frank Contreras
2004 – 05    Abe Doliente
2003 – 04    Larry Campitiello
2002 – 03    John Spafford
2001 – 02    Joe Proctor
2000 – 01    Joseph La Combe
1999 – 00 + Bernard Gardner
1998 – 99     Rey A. Fernandez
1997 – 98     Robert Brennan
1996 – 97     Robert J. Villalobos
1995 – 96 + Harley W. Harris
1994 – 95 +Joseph P. Schultz
1992 – 94 + Leonard J. Brezezinski
1991 – 92     Mike B. Lopez
1990 – 91 + John G. Moore
1989 – 90 + Michael G. Moran, Jr.
1988 – 89 +Lawrence J. Powell
1987 – 88 + Albert G. Porritt
1985 – 87 + John B. Tuscano
1984 – 85 + Edward J. Panek
1983 – 84 + Albert H. Koenig
1981 – 83     Douglas E. Tomlin
1980 – 81 + Ira Beaver
1979 – 80 + Carlos Martinez
1978 – 79 + James E. Sheil
1976 – 78 + Robert Dover
1975 – 76    Theodore Gurbacki
1974 – 75 + Michael G. Moran Sr.
1973 – 74 + Jose Alire
1972 – 73 + Paul McGrath – +Clarence Kueter
1971 – 72 + Richard G. Josserand
1970 – 71 + Mitchel Gos
1969 – 70 + William F. Smith – Dennis Parra
1968 – 69 + Gustave Kirchoff
1967 – 68 + Conrad M. Nagengast
1966 – 67 + George A. Tasch
1965 – 66 + Kenneth E. Battin
1964 – 65 + Edward J. Greaney
1963 – 64 + Frank E. O’Connor
1962 – 63 + Alfred Ohlinger
1961 – 62 + Cecil E. Sparling
1960 – 61 + Lambert J. Ninteman
1959 – 60 + Albin J. Seifert
1957 – 59 + Thomas F. Usher
1956 – 57 + Dr Charles F. Kennedy
1955 – 56 + Ralph Mazela