Seton Hall University

Honoring Monsignor Coleman and Students at Charter Day 2017  

Mother Seton StatueThis year the University community celebrated the commitment to moral education as a foundation of Seton Hall through Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton Charter Day. Charter Day offers the community an opportunity to reflect on the University's great history and renew our commitment to our mission.

The 2017 Charter Day celebration, marking the official recognition of Seton Hall by the State of New Jersey in 1861, took place on Wednesday, April 19 in Jubilee Hall auditorium.

Although Bishop James Roosevelt Bayley, who named the college after his aunt, Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton, founded Seton Hall in 1856, it took an additional five years for the New Jersey Legislature to take legal notice.

Charter Day is a special opportunity each year to celebrate and reflect upon our history and purpose, our Catholic identity and our mission.

On Charter Day, the University President also honors a member of the community with the Bishop Bernard J. McQuaid Medal for Distinguished Service. Named for the first president of Seton Hall, who throughout his life was dedicated to Catholic education, long-time employees become eligible for the medal due to their outstanding service and commitment to the University's mission. The award expresses the University's grateful appreciation and high regard for members of the Seton Hall community who have served beyond measure with selfless dedication and high distinction.


Reverend Monsignor Robert F. Coleman receives the Bishop Bernard J. McQuaid Medal for Distinguished Service.

This year's McQuaid Medal recipient is Reverend Monsignor Robert Coleman, J.C.D. Monsignor Coleman is also Minister to the Priest Community and Associate Vice-Provost. He earned a J.C.L. and J.C.D. from the Pontifical Gregorian University and a diploma from the School of Latin Letters, Pontifical Gregorian University. Ordained to the priesthood in 1978, his first assignment was as Parochial Vicar at Saint Aloysius Church in Jersey City until 1982. He then served as Advocate and as Judge and Defender of the Bond of the Metropolitan Tribunal, and later as Secretary for Canonical Affairs, Office of the Archbishop of Newark. In 1996, he was named a Chaplain to His Holiness with the title of Monsignor.

Monsignor Coleman served as Vice-Rector/Business Manager of Seton Hall's Immaculate Conception Seminary School of Theology from 1996 to 2000. He later became Rector and Dean in July of 2000 and served the seminary in that position until June of 2012.

In 2013, he assumed the position as Associate Vice-Provost at Seton Hall University and in July 2014, Monsignor Coleman became Minister to the Priest Community and a member of the Board of Trustees and Board of Regents at Seton Hall University. In early 2015, he began serving as Chair of the Censors Liborum for the Archdiocese.

This year's keynote speaker was Dianne M. Traflet, J.D. (1988), S.T.D. Associate Dean, Associate Professor of Pastoral Studies in the Immaculate Conception Seminary School of Theology. Dean Traflet earned a J.D. from Seton Hall University School of Law, an M.A. in Catholic Theology and Pastoral Ministry from The Institute of Advanced Studies of Catholic Doctrine, St. John's University, and an S.T.L. and an S.T.D. from the Pontifical University of St. Thomas Aquinas (The Angelicum), Rome. Dr. Traflet is the director of the Institute for Christian Spirituality and is a key leader in the Center for Diaconal Formation.

Dean Traflet spoke on "Looking Up and Facing the Wind: The Visionary Determination of St. Elizabeth Ann Seton," in which she illustrated the fierce persistence of our university's namesake, who through trying times, survived only to dedicate her life to God and to the education of the newly growing Catholic community in the United States.


Senior servant leaders (From right to left) Ruben Pereira, Nicole Phin, Christopher Spring, Caitlin Campbell, Kerlanta Antoine, Siobhan McGirl, Daniela Mallia, Tony Varughese, and Gary Phillips pose for a photo.

In addition to bestowing the McQuaid Award on Charter Day, the University community recognizes students who are Servant Leader Scholars, recipients of a service and leadership scholarship from the Center for Vocation and Servant Leadership. These students are involved in an ongoing servant leadership program, maintain a 3.0 GPA, and offer 20 hours of service per semester to both the larger and Seton Hall communities.

Msgr. Anthony Ziccardi presented the Servant Leader Scholars who are graduating seniors and/or graduate students, including: Kerlanta Antoine, Caitlin Campbell, Daniela Mallia, Siobhan McGirl, Lauren McGuire, Ruben Pereira, Gary Phillips, Nicole Phin, Christopher Spring, and Tony Varughese. These servant leaders will go on to positions in medical services, security, media, journalism and finance.

Additional 2017 Servant Leader Scholars include:

Ibukunoluwa Akintola
Amelia Baijnath
Troy Balog
Michael Bizzoco
Soriennys Brito
Laura Cavanagh
Nicholas Coppola
Lamar Council
Taylor Cutcliff
Gabrielle Didonato
Angeli Fernandes
Madison Feser
Cristina Hill
Luke Keck
Adeline Laurente
Victoria Lieto
Kathleen Lynch
Lindsay McGowan

Joel Menendez
Matthew Minor
Joseph Murante
Jacqueline Murdocca
Emily Osborn
Smital Patel
Christina Petruzzella
Taylor Ratcliffe
Luisa Rinaudo
Jacquelin Riva-Tejada
Tristan Ryan
Isabelle Salvador
Emily Silkowski
Jillian Szczepanski
Kimberly Szilagyi
Emma Tobin
Karen Thompson

To learn more about participating as a servant leader or Charter Day, visit our website.

Categories: Campus Life , Faith and Service

For more information, please contact:

  • Laurie Pine
  • (973) 378-2638