Detroit Catholic's Salute to Excellence 2024: Honoring our outstanding grads

This year, 1,973 seniors will graduate from the 23 Catholic high schools in the Archdiocese of Detroit. Of those, only a select few earned the honor of being named valedictorians and salutatorians for their respective schools. Detroit Catholic salutes these students and all of their classmates as they move to the next stage in their lives, filled with God's blessings and hopes for the future. (Austin Rucker via Unsplash)

Editor’s note: The Catholic Services Appeal is essential to the mission of the Archdiocese of Detroit. It funds and supports more than 100 ministries that serve the local Church in southeast Michigan, including Detroit Catholic. Visit www.givecsa.org to support the mission by making a gift today. We are grateful for your generous support and for your prayers.

DETROIT — For the 1,973 graduates of the 23 Catholic high schools in the Archdiocese of Detroit, the end of their high school careers is a special time to reflect on the graces God has given them throughout their lives. The Class of 2024, in particular, has had a unique high school experience, beginning with the COVID-19 pandemic, which brought with it unprecedented challenges.

Nevertheless, this year's class has risen above the obstacles, and with the help of their teachers, friends, families and mentors, is ready to face the world with the help of God's blessings.

Each year, Detroit Catholic honors those students who, through hard work and perseverance, set themselves apart as valedictorians, salutatorians and scholars of honor. We applaud their accomplishments both inside and outside the classroom, and pray God guides them and all their classmates in the years ahead.

Please join us in a special congratulations to this year's top students, below.

Editor's note: Schools have different criteria for selecting valedictorians and salutatorians, and some schools honor more students than others. Detroit Catholic’s list is provided by each of the high schools surveyed.

Academy of the Sacred Heart, Bloomfield Hills

Valedictorian: Morgan McNally
Parents:
Renee and John McNally
Parish:
St. Paul of Tarsus, Clinton Township
College & Major:
University of Notre Dame (Biochemistry)

Salutatorian: Lena Armijo
Parents:
Maria and Ricardo Armijo
Parish:
St. Hugo of the Hills, Bloomfield Hills
College & Major: University of Michigan (Computer Science)

Austin Catholic High School, Chesterfield Township

Valedictorian: Evalyn Theut
Parents:
Debra and Evan Theut
Parish:
St. Peter, Mount Clemens
College & Major:
Madonna University (Nursing)

Salutatorian: Meadow Sepke
Parents:
Dove Rule and Anthony Sepke
Parish:
St. Peter, Mount Clemens
College & Major:
Saginaw Valley State University (Criminal Justice)

Bishop Foley High School, Madison Heights

Valedictorian: Steven Kenny
Parents:
Steve and Christine Kenny
Parish:
St. Mary, Royal Oak
College & Major:
University of Michigan (Astronomy and Astrophysics)

Salutatorian: Dylan Barbieri
Parents:
Paul and Kelly Barbieri
Parish:
St. Lawrence Catholic Church
College & Major:
University of Michigan (Biochemistry)

Brother Rice High School, Bloomfield Hills

Valedictorian: John Everly
Parents: Amy and Jon Everly
Parish: Our Lady Queen of Martyrs, Beverly Hills
College & Major: University of Notre Dame (Business)

Valedictorian: Nicholas Hulgrave
Parents: Margaret Binkley and David Hulgrave
Parish: Holy Name, Birmingham
College & Major: University of Notre Dame (Business)

Valedictorian: Brian Totonchi
Parents: Amy and Dan Totonchi
Parish: Our Lady Queen of Martyrs
College & Major: University of Michigan (Robotics and Business)

Salutatorian: Enzo DeMaria
Parents: Tony and Rosalba DeMaria
Parish: St. Thérèse of Lisieux
College & Major: University of Michigan (Ross School of Business)

Salutatorian: George Sinishtaj
Parents: Lisa and Vaseli Sinishtaj
College & Major: University of Notre Dame (Neuroscience and Behavior/Pre Med)

Cabrini High School, Allen Park

Valedictorian: Stephen Schumm
Parents:
Greg and Colleen Schumm
Parish:
St. Frances Cabrini, Allen Park
College & Major:
University of Michigan Ann Arbor (Mechanical Engineering)

Salutatorian: Ethan Watson
Parents:
Jeffrey and Marianne Watson
Parish:
St. Frances Cabrini, Allen Park
College & Major:
University of Michigan (Business)

Cardinal Mooney High School, Marine City

Valedictorian: Henry Grace
Parents: Matthew and Jessica Grace
Parish: St. Augustine, Richmond
College:
University of Notre Dame

Salutatorian: Olivia Heithoff
Parents:
Scott and Lynn Heithoff
Parish:
St. Edward on the Lake, Lakeport
College:
University of Michigan

Cristo Rey High School, Detroit

Valedictorian: Miranda Alonso
Parents:
Alonso Salvado and Veronica Servin
Parish:
Most Holy Redeemer, Detroit
College:
University of Notre Dame

Valedictorian: Yeraldi Bermudez-Morales
Parents:
Ventura Bermudez-Sanchez and Yolanda Morales Cruz
Parish:
Most Holy Redeemer, Detroit
College:
University of Notre Dame

Valedictorian: Mauricio Trujillo
Parents:
Alejandro Trujillo and Maria Cruz
Parish:
Most Holy Redeemer, Detroit
College:
Undecided

Salutatorian: Andrea Cuevas-Garcia
Parents:
Cesar Joel Cuevas Iniquez and Gricelda Garcia
Parish:
St. Andre Bessette, Ecorse
College:
Michigan State University

Salutatorian: Ashley Lugo
Parents:
Miguel and Melissa Lugo
Parish:
St. Gabriel, Detroit
College:
University of Michigan

Salutatorian: Montserrat Moran-Sanchez
Parents:
Luis Llanos-Romero and Monica Sanchez De La Torre
Parish:
St. Gabriel, Detroit
College:
Wayne State University

Salutatorian: Ashley Zuniga de Alba
Parents:
Sergio Zuniga Cuevas and Juana De Alba Camarena
Parish:
St. Stephen/Mary, Mother of the Church, Detroit
College:
University of Notre Dame

De La Salle Collegiate High School, Warren

Valedictorian: Cameron Conklin
Parents: Robert and Kelly Conklin
Parish: St. Isidore, Macomb
College & Major: University of Michigan (Pre-Med)

Salutatorian: Derek Yaek
Parents: Dr. Jennifer and Jonathan Yaek
Parish: St. Augustine, Richmond
College & Major: University of Michigan (Molecular Cellular and Developmental Biology)

Detroit Catholic Central High School, Novi

Valedictorian: Dominic Apap
Parents: Mark and Angela Apap
Parish: St. Edith, Livonia
College & Major: University of Michigan (Biology (Pre-Med))

Valedictorian: Particio Ezdebski
Parents: Jeffrey and Maria Ezdebski
Parish: Our Lady of Sorrows, Farmington
College & Major: University of Michigan (Economics (Pre-Law))

Valedictorian: John Harvey
Parents: George and Cheri Harvey
Parish: St. Joseph, Howell
College & Major: University of Michigan (Mechanical Engineering)

Valedictorian: Ryan Illikman
Parents: James and Sue Illikman
Parish: St. Patrick, White Lake
College & Major: University of Notre Dame (Finance)

Valedictorian: Lucas Jraiche
Parents: Pierre and Colleen Jraiche
Parish: St. Michael the Archangel, Livonia
College & Major: University of Michigan (Undecided)

Valedictorian: Oliver Kammeraad
Parents: Bryan and Julie Kammeraad
Parish: First Presbyterian Church, Plymouth
College & Major: University of Michigan (Undecided)

Valedictorian: Danny Moore
Parents: Scott and Katie Moore
Parish: Our Lady of Good Counsel, Plymouth
College & Major: University of Michigan (Nursing)

Valedictorian: Joe Sievert
Parents: Glenn and Karen Sievert
Parish: St. Francis of Assisi, Ann Arbor
College & Major: University of Michigan (Electrical Engineering)

Valedictorian: Francis Toma
Parents: Leon and Angie Toma
Parish: St. Thomas Chaldean Catholic Church, West Bloomfield
College & Major: Michigan State University (Biology (Pre-Med))

Valedictorian: Andrew Zoltowski
Parents: Kelly Bladzik and Jim Zoltowski
Parish: Our Lady of Good Counsel, Plymouth
College & Major: University of Michigan (PharmD)

Divine Child High School, Dearborn

Valedictorian: Lauren Postl
Parents:
Lisa and Larry Postl
Parish:
St. Kenneth, Plymouth
College & Major:
University of Michigan (Environmental Science and Philosophy or Creative Writing)

Salutatorian: Connor Neiheisel
Parents:
Susan and Michael Neiheisel
Parish:
St. Thomas a'Becket, Canton
College & Major:
Michigan State University (Computer Science)

Everest Collegiate High School & Academy, Clarkston

Valedictorian: Ravi Iyer
Parents:
Rajesh and Julie Iyer and Shree Kilaru
Parish:
St. Joseph, Lake Orion
College & Major:
University of Michigan (Engineering)

Valedictorian: Caroline Beggs
Parents:
William and Karen Beggs
Parish:
St. Daniel, Clarkston
College & Major:
Amherst College (Environmental Studies)

Salutatorian: Donghwan Won
Parents:
Namyun Won and Yunhee Kim
Parish:
St. Daniel, Clarkston
College & Major:
University of Texas at Austin (Data Science)

Salutatorian: Eve Herrgott
Parents:
Robert and Jenny Herrgott
Parish:
St. Joseph, Lake Orion
College & Major:
Michigan State University (Aerospace Engineering)

Gabriel Richard High School, Riverview

Valedictorian: Natalie Neubecker
Parents:
Eric and Diane Neubecker
College & Major:
University of Michigan (Biomedical Engineering)

Salutatorian: Christian Abello
Parents:
Christian and Roselyn Abello
College & Major:
Michigan State University - Honors College (Mechanical Engineering)

Loyola High School, Detroit

Valedictorian: Ja’Mell Frazier
Parents:
Andrea Alford and John Frazier
College & Major:
Harris-Stowe State University, St. Louis (Sociology & Political Science)

Salutatorian: Brandon Washington Jr.
Parents:
Brandon Washington Sr. and Roshuna Turner
College & Major:
Howard University, Washington, D.C. (Mechanical Engineering)

Marian High School, Bloomfield Hills

Valedictorian: Maggie Scott
Parents:
Joe and Maria Scott
Parish:
St. Hugo of the Hills, Bloomfield Hills
College & Major:
University of Michigan (Ross School of Business)

Valedictorian: Chloe Toma
Parents:
Bruce and Mervit Toma
Parish:
Mother of God Chaldean Catholic Church, Southfield
College & Major:
Oakland University (Biology/Pre-Med)

Valedictorian: Molly O’Brien
Parents:
Colleen and Michael O’Brien
Parish:
St. Hugo of the Hills, Bloomfield Hills
College & Major:
University of Notre Dame (Economics)

Valedictorian: Charlotte Quaine
Parents:
Paula and Michael Quaine
Parish:
St. Hugo of the Hills, Bloomfield Hills
College:
Boston College

Valedictorian: Grace Bitti
Parents:
Abdulkarim and Niran Bitti
Parish:
Mar Addai Chaldean Catholic Church, Oak Park
College:
Princeton University

Mercy High School, Farmington Hills

Valedictorian: Alexis Rounds
Parents:
Suwanya and Darrell Rounds
College & Major:
Northwestern University (Political Science)

Salutatorian: Julia Holt
Parents:
Kristen and Glenn Holt
Parish:
St. Kenneth, Plymouth
College & Major:
Davidson College (Data Science)

Salutatorian: Maura McSweeney
Parents:
Kelly & Dan McSweeney
Parish:
St. Patrick, White Lake
College & Major:
University of Notre Dame (Business/Finance)

Notre Dame Preparatory High School, Pontiac

Valedictorian: George Moussa
Parents:
Fadi Moussa and Lourin Chahin
College & Major:
University of Michigan (Business/Pre-Med)

Valedictorian: Addison Bellows
Parents:
Chad and Donna Bellows
Parish:
Our Lady Queen of Martyrs, Beverly Hills
College & Major:
Duke University (Economics with minor in Journalism)

Valedictorian: Nolan Tompkins
Parents:
Brent and Melissa Tompkins
Parish: St. Joseph, Lake Orion
College & Major:
University of Michigan (Organizational Studies)

Valedictorian: Ryan Wells
Parents:
Jason and Margaret Wells
Parish: St. Hugo of the Hills, Bloomfield Hills
College & Major:
University of Michigan (Business)

Valedictorian: Macie Krankel
Parents:
Richard and Lin Krankel
Parish: St. Joseph, Lake Orion
College & Major:
University of Michigan (Biochemistry)

Valedictory Court: Sophia Bahu, Diego Betancourt, Jeffrey Guo, Julia Gurne, Zoe Hoke, Joseph Joulakh, Michael Kenny, Katherine Leuchtmann, Alexander Light, Joseph Liparoto, Anthony Mina, Alaina Polsinelli, Mariana Ricci, Aryana Ryeson, Beck Silver, Thomas St. Andre, Jose Miguel Turrubiartes Tapia, Jazelle Yaldo

Our Lady of the Lakes High School, Waterford

Valedictorian: Jack Romkema
Parents:
Mike Romkema and Karen Romkema
Parish:
Our Lady of the Lakes, Waterford
College & Major:
University of Notre Dame (Economics and Mathematics)

Salutatorian: Alexis Allan
Parents:
Michael and Christine Allan
Parish:
Our Lady of the Lakes, Waterford
College & Major:
University of Michigan (Psychology)

Regina High School, Warren

Valedictorian: Greta Noel Hellebuyck
Parents:
Dawn Childress
Parish:
St. Isaac Jogues, St. Clair Shores
College & Major:
Vanderbilt University (Political Science)

Valedictorian: Natalie Rose Kelly Moncaleano
Parents:
Juan and Melissa Moncaleano
Parish:
St. Peter, Mount Clemens
College & Major:
Bowling Green State University (Aviation Flight Technology)

Valedictorian: Megan Charlotte Renaud
Parents:
James and Andrea Renaud
Parish:
St. Malachy, Sterling Heights
College & Major:
University of Michigan (Biochemistry)

Valedictorian: Gianna Marselina Switalski
Parents:
Matthew Switalski and Rebecca Agostino
Parish:
St. Peter, Mount Clemens
College & Major:
University of Notre Dame (History)

Shrine High School, Royal Oak

Valedictorian: Isaiah Cortez
Parents:
Ronaldo and Ana Cortez
Parish:
National Shrine of the Little Flower Basilica, Royal Oak
College:
University of Michigan

Valedictorian: Madeleine Davidson
Parents:
Michael and Erin Davidson
Parish:
National Shrine of the Little Flower Basilica, Royal Oak
College:
Loyola University Chicago

Valedictorian: Thea Dugan
Parents:
Patrick and Monique Dugan
Parish:
National Shrine of the Little Flower Basilica, Royal Oak
College:
Loyola University Chicago

Valedictorian: Stephen Kropelnyckyj
Parents:
Nestor and Christine Kropelnyckyj
Parish:
St. Josaphat Ukrainian Catholic Church, Warren
College:
University of Michigan

Valedictorian: Ethan Lanfear
Parents:
David and Sara Lanfear
Parish:
National Shrine of the Little Flower Basilica, Royal Oak
College:
University of Michigan

Valedictorian: Eileen McGlinchey
Parents:
Kevin and Mary McGlinchey
Parish:
National Shrine of the Little Flower Basilica, Royal Oak
College:
University of Michigan

Valedictorian: Alice Mikula
Parents:
Deborah Hammer and Michael Mikula
Parish:
First Presbyterian Church
College:
University of Michigan

Valedictorian: Catherine Murray
Parents:
Thomas and Mary Murray
Parish:
National Shrine of the Little Flower Basilica, Royal Oak
College:
University of Michigan

Valedictorian: John Papp
Parents:
Gregory and Martha Papp
Parish:
St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox
College:
University of Michigan

Valedictorian: McKenna Ryan-Elbert
Parents:
Christian Elbert and Alison Ryan
Parish:
National Shrine of the Little Flower Basilica, Royal Oak
College:
Kalamazoo College

St. Catherine of Siena Academy, Wixom

Valedictorians: Elizabeth Harris
Parents:
Brian and Michelle Harris
Parish:
Our Lady of Sorrows, Farmington
College & Major:
University of Michigan (Psychology)

Valedictorian: Grace Lancaster
Parents:
Todd and Julie Lancaster
Parish:
St. James, Novi
College & Major:
Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University at Daytona Beach (Spaceflight Operations and minoring in Military Science through Army ROTC)

Valedictorian: Antonia Leonardo
Parents:
James and Angela Leonardo
Parish:
St. Edith, Livonia
College & Major:
University of Michigan (Creative Writing and Literature and English)

Valedictorian: Hannah Lisch
Parents:
Ronald and Kimberly Lisch
Parish:
Brightmoor Christian Church
College & Major:
Adrian College (Exercise Science and minoring in Biology)

Valedictorian: Therese Prince
Parents:
David and Jennifer Prince
Parish:
Our Lady of Good Counsel, Plymouth
College & Major:
Michigan State University (Supply Chain Management)

Valedictorian: Rose Worth
Parents:
Scott and Nicole Worth
Parish:
Our Lady of Good Counsel, Plymouth
College & Major:
University of Notre Dame (Philosophy and Theology)

Salutatorian: Katherine Hans
Parents:
Michael and Jessica Hans
Parish:
St. James, Novi
College & Major:
Saint Mary’ s College (Biology)

Salutatorian: Sarah Palushaj
Parents:
Kola and Marie Palushaj
Parish:
Our Lady of Victory, Northville
College & Major:
Madonna University (Business)

St. Mary Catholic Central High School, Monroe

Valedictorian: Sierra Goins
Parents:
Tim and Kari Goins
Parish:
St. Joseph, Erie
College & Major:
University of Notre Dame (Neuroscience and Behavior (Pre-Med))

Salutatorian: Maureen Smith
Parents:
Todd and Becky Smith
Parish:
St. John the Baptist, Monroe
College & Major:
Ohio University (Chemical Engineering)

St. Mary's Preparatory, Orchard Lake

Valedictorian: Kyle Andrew Kavc
Parents:
Andrew and Danielle Kavc
Parish:
St. Joseph, Lake Orion
College & Major:
Kyle will study biomedical engineering after he plays junior hockey

Valedictorian: Reece McNutt
Parents:
Michael and Michele McNutt
Parish:
St. Patrick, White Lake
College & Major:
University of Notre Dame

Salutatorian: Norman Daniel Klawender Jr.
Parents:
Norman and Mary Klawender
Parish:
Our Lady of Sorrows, Farmington
College & Major:
United States Air Force Academy (Engineering)

Salutatorian: Alexandra Fritsch
Parents:
Rob and Neda Fritsch
Parish:
Prince of Peace, West Bloomfield
College & Major:
University of Michigan

University of Detroit Jesuit High School, Detroit

Valedictorian: Henry Balasia
Parents:
Chris and Kristen Balasia
Parish:
St. Thomas More, Troy
College & Major:
University of Michigan (Ross School of Business)

Valedictorian: Daniel Burke
Parents:
Erin and Kathleen Burke
Parish:
Our Lady Queen of Martyrs, Beverly Hills
College & Major:
University of Notre Dame (Computer Science)

Valedictorian: Christopher Choueiry
Parents:
Charles and Abla Choueiry
Parish:
St. Rafka Maronite Catholic Church, Livonia
College & Major:
University of Michigan (Computer Engineering)

Valedictorian: Paul Downey
Parents:
Matthew and Cynthia Downey
Parish:
Our Lady of Sorrows, Farmington
College & Major:
University of Michigan (Engineering)

Valedictorian: Grayson Johnson
Parents:
Sean and Christine Johnson
Parish:
Divine Child, Dearborn
College & Major:
Michigan State University (Biology)

Valedictorian: Frank Salzeider
Parents:
Scott and Pavlina Salzeider
Parish:
St. Hugo of the Hills, Bloomfield Hills
College & Major:
University of Notre Dame (Chemical Engineering)

Valedictorian: Johnnie Dale Melejendo Shoemake
Parents:
Lonnie and Angel Shoemake
Parish:
St. Peter, Mount Clemens
College & Major:
University of Michigan (Biochemistry)



Share:
Print


Catholic schools AOD-CSA: June Article Bottom
Menu
Home
Subscribe
Search