Johanna Cavallaro, mother of six children, was one of many Lay Catholics who became actively involved in the church after Vatican II. She became a volunteer leader in social ministry and parish outreach at St. Brigid’s Parish in nearby Westbury.
For over thirty years, Johanna supported the poor and the immigrant communities in a variety of ways. Among her contributions: she helped to start a food pantry and Thanksgiving drive that exists to this day and still feeds hundreds of families year-round.
After her death in 1997 at age fifty-eight, Johanna was posthumously awarded the Caritas Award from Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Rockville Centre for her work in social ministry. In 1999, St. Brigid’s created the “Casa Mary Johanna House”, a ministry that provides counseling and support in the Hispanic community. “Casa Mary Johanna” is presently located in nearby New Cassel, Westbury and is named after Johanna and another parishioner, Mary Goode, in memory of their dedicated volunteerism in social and outreach ministry.
Johanna’s husband Albert has been an adjunct professor in the Math department at Nassau Community College for four decades. All six children of Johanna and Albert attended NCC. The family has established this scholarship in her memory to continue her work in the service of others.
Those majoring or pursuing a career in social work or nursing are encouraged to apply for this scholarship.