This past week, the Bergen Catholic Alumni Association welcomed eight new members into the school's Hall of Fame at its 15th annual dinner on March 25.
The new inductees joined approximately 147 alumni and former faculty members who have contributed to the success at Bergen Catholic.
The new inductees include:
Alvaro de Molina, Class of 1975 (Contributor) – Alvaro is a leader in the business world and his community. As a business leader, he reached the level of President/CEO of Bank of America Securities, Chief Financial Officer of Bank of America, and Chief Executive Office of GMAC. He is involved in numerous charitable organizations in Charlotte, NC, earned “Father of the Year” honors there, and continues to make an annual substantial financial investment in Bergen Catholic.
Alecko Eskandarian, Class of 2000 (Athlete) – Alecko, the all-time leading scorer in B.C. soccer history with 154 goals, earned the 2000 “Gatorade National High School Player of the Year” award to cap off a brilliant scholastic career. He moved on to the University of Virginia, where he won the prestigious Hermann Award and Soccer America’s 2002 “College Men’s Player of the Year” award. He was then drafted as the #1 pick overall in the Major League Soccer draft by D.C. United in January, 2003.
James Hoban, Class of 1977 (R.I.P. – Special) – James was a standout player on the ice for the B.C. hockey team, but he proved to be an even greater hero later on. The Villanova University graduate became an officer in the U.S. Marine Corps and later switched to the U.S. Navy Reserve. In 1986, he lost his life serving his country while piloting an A-6 aircraft. It was discovered that he steered his disabled aircraft away from a residential area, saving hundreds of people on the ground but eliminating his chance to save himself in the process.
Anthony Matesic, Class of 1988 (Athlete) – One of the finest two-way linemen in Bergen Catholic football history, Anthony dominated the trenches during his term as a three-year starter. A two-time First-Team All-County pick, he was named First-Team All-State after leading the B.C. defense to a school-record nine shutouts during the 1987 season. Anthony was also selected to The Record’s “All-Decade Team” of the 1980s. He went on to enjoy a fine career at Penn State.
Joe Piela, Class of 1995 (Athlete) – Joe emerged as one of the finest all-around athletes, not only in B.C. history, but in Bergen County history, as well. A three-year starter in football (where he was named All-County twice and All-State once), he led B.C. to the State Championship Game three times. Also a First-Team All-County selection in baseball and wrestling, he became one of only a half-dozen athletes in County history to earn that honor in three different sports.
Eugene Smith, Class of 1997 (Athlete) – Eugene was arguably the most successful golfer in B.C. history as he was named to the All-State team three times and to the All-County squad all four years. He placed in the “Top Ten” all four years at the State Championships, and won the All-Groups crown in 1996. Eugene won the prestigious Luciano County Championship twice and also placed second and third during his four years at B.C. He was inducted into the Seton Hall University Hall of Fame in 2010.
Br. John Gennaro Sullo, C.F.C. (Special) – Br. Sullo served Bergen Catholic High School during three different periods, the last of which occurred between the years of 1993 and 1999. He held the position of Principal for one year (1993-94), and then was named B.C.’s first President. Many major improvements took place during his tenure, including electrical and technological upgrades in the building and the installation of Field Turf on the athletic field.
Rich Taylor, Class of 1970 (Contributor) – Rich, a highly successful businessman, is most noted for his generous support of a variety of programs and charities that help the poor or promote the Catholic faith. A longtime benefactor to B.C. (who also served as Chairman of The Campaign for the 2nd Half-Century), he has contributed to (and served on the Boards of) a number of well-known charities. In 2005, he and his wife, Aleta, were elevated to the Papal Order of St. Gregory the Great by His Holiness, Pope John Paul II.