After 10 years of service as Executive Director, Sr. Mary Frances Taymans will retire from the National Sponsorship and Network Office at the end of this summer. Drawing on her 17 years’ experience working at the National Catholic Education Association, Sister Mary Frances shaped the SND network of schools into a national organization. She formed an Educational Advisory Council of sisters and lay leaders; hosted national and regional gatherings for representatives of SND sponsored and affiliated schools; led board orientations and retreats; and participated in numerous executive searches. Most recently she shepherded the evolution of the National Education Office into the National Sponsorship and Network Office and worked with SND leadership to establish the SND USA National Ministry Corporation.
“It truly has been a privilege to work closely with the women and men who lead our 17 sponsored ministries and 33 affiliated schools as administrators and trustees,” reflects Sr. Mary Frances. “As of June 2020, over 16,700 children and adults had the opportunity to learn and grow in schools animated by the SND educational vision and principles. In welcoming our health and elder care ministries, the National Sponsorship and Network Office already benefits from their commitment to mission. I have great appreciation and gratitude for being part of the ever-unfolding gift these ministries are to those they serve, to our country and our Church.”
The SND USA leadership has appointed Laura Koehl, Ed.D., as the next Executive Director of National Sponsorship and Network Office, effective September 1, 2021. An alumna of Notre Dame Academy in Covington, Kentucky, Laura brings a long association with the Sisters of Notre Dame to her new role. She began teaching at NDA in 2006 and has served as principal and, since 2014, as president. She has been active in many projects of the SND National Education Office and served as chair of the Educational Advisory Council. About her successor Sr. Mary Frances observes, “Laura brings scope across the challenges and possibilities currently before Catholic ministries, coupled with depth of understanding of SND mission in ministry. I am grateful and proud to pass the baton to her whose oft spoken mantra ‘all is good’ captures Laura Koehl well.”
“The Sisters of Notre Dame have been a central part of my personal and professional life and left an indelible and endearing mark on my heart,” states Laura Koehl. “Through our many SND ministries we see the incredible impact the Sisters’ mission has on so many individuals and communities. I am humbled and honored by this leadership opportunity to work with SND USA to advance the SND mission, proclaiming God’s Goodness and Provident Care in our 21st century world.”
Excerpt from a letter released on 2/24 written by: Sr. Margaret M. Gorman, SND