Bishop Kevin Vann Announces Annette Walker and Christopher Furman as 2017 Honorees
Garden Grove, Calif. (April 11, 2017) – The Most Rev. Kevin Vann, Bishop of Orange, will honor two Orange County business leaders at the 15th annual Conference on Business & Ethics, sponsored by the Orange Catholic Foundation and held at the Hilton Anaheim; May 12, 2017, from 7:30 a.m. – 11:30 a.m. The annual event is dedicated to supporting Catholic education, promoting ethical business practices and recognizing local business leaders for exemplary dedication to ethical business practices. Annette Walker, MHA, President of Strategy and Chief Executive of St. Joseph Health, and Christopher Furman, President and Chief Executive Officer of Ventura Foods, will be recognized with the Bishop’s Award for Exemplary Business Integrity. This award recognizes accomplishment and personal dedication to ethical business practices.
“We are blessed to have so many business people that lead their companies according to resolute and compassionate ethical codes that respect their employees, associates, and our communities. I am again inspired by two such leaders that have excelled in their respective professions without sacrificing their commitment to leading their lives as Christ has shown us. Annette and Christopher are truly applying their faith in all aspects of their lives and I am blessed to recognize their efforts and commitment at this year’s conference,” said Bishop Vann.
The conference program will feature a keynote address from the legendary voice of the Los Angeles Dodgers, the inestimable Vin Scully. Scully’s fidelity to the Dodgers was legendary – he was with the Dodgers for sixty-seven straight seasons, including remaining with them when they left New York for Los Angeles in 1957. Vin Scully has the record – in all of professional sports history – for the longest time that a broadcaster has remained with one team. This record will not easily be matched. However, his commitment to baseball and the Dodgers has not been his only level of devotion – in fact, his faithfulness to the Lord in how he practices his Catholic faith is even more prominent. According to a June 15, 2016, article by George Weigel in First Things, “Vin Scully has lived through tragedies that would have crushed or embittered others: the death of a wife; the death of a son. He openly credits the Catholic faith with which he grew up in the Bronx as his life’s anchor.”
Conference attendees will also benefit from a second keynote address from famed actor and Catholic mother of four, Patricia Heaton. Heaton is one of the most unusual and refreshing voices in Hollywood. Never one to shy away from controversial topics, Heaton has made a name for herself by excelling at her craft and raising eyebrows among her peers. Heaton is currently starring as a multi-tasking, working mother in ABC’s new hit sitcom “The Middle” which tells the story of a middle class Midwestern family through the eyes of the mother. Her hilariously realistic portrayal of much put-upon housewife Debra Barone in the hit show “Everybody Loves Raymond” garnered her seven nominations and two Emmys for best actress in a sitcom. Last fall, Heaton launched a new program, “Patricia Heaton Parties,” on the Food Network. Heaton is not just known for her excellence as an actress and writer, her deep faith and strong social conscience have prompted her to speak out on issues that are hot-button topics in Hollywood.
“The annual Conference on Business & Ethics is the Orange Catholic Foundation’s premier event bringing together a community of influential business, religious, academic, and philanthropic leaders, knowing they can share a common commitment to ethical best practices in their daily lives . It is an honor to bring the values of faith, integrity and service above self together with powerful keynote presentations and to raise money for our Catholic schools at the same time. This morning event is an important fundraiser to allow the Catholic schools in the diocese to be available, accessible, and affordable to all students of all social and economic strata by providing scholarships to students in grades K-8 who require financial assistance,” said Cynthia Bobruk, executive director of the Orange Catholic Foundation.
Bishop’s Award Honorees:
Annette Walker: Annette Walker is President of Strategy, Providence St. Joseph Health (PSJH) and Chief Executive of St. Joseph Health. She is accountable for all strategy, marketing, sales/ outreach/business development and project management offices across the PSJH system, which spans seven states and employs 100,000 caregivers.
In service to local communities, Annette has been on the board of trustees for St. Joseph Health’s Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital, Queen of the Valley Medical Center, Petaluma Valley Hospital, Mission Hospital, St. Mary Medical Center and the CSJ Educational Network. She currently serves on the following boards: Institute for Mental Health and Wellness, Community Partnership Fund, USF School of Nursing and Health Professions, and the Orange County Business Council. She is an advocate of work-life balance who enjoys spending time with her husband, Chuck, their six children and ten grandchildren.
Christopher Furman: Christopher D. Furman is President and CEO of Ventura Foods, a leading global manufacturer of custom and branded food products based in Brea, Calif. Mr. Furman lends his expertise and giving to support educational and charitable organizations close to his heart. He serves on the board of the Pacific Life Insurance Company and served previously on the Children’s Hospital of Orange County Foundation board and the Consultative Board for Santa Margarita Catholic High School. Mr. Furman received a degree in Food Marketing from St. Joseph’s University (SJU) where, in 2013, he established an endowed scholarship for the school’s Food Marketing students. In April 2017, SJU will induct Mr. Furman into its Haub Business School Hall of Fame. He lives in Coto de Caza, Calif., with his wife, Monica. They have three children, Matthew, Emily, and Caroline.
About the Orange Catholic Foundation:
Established by Bishop Tod D. Brown in November 2000, the Orange Catholic Foundation is a 501(c)(3) charitable corporation and an autonomous pious foundation that exists to serve the Diocese of Orange, including its parishes, schools and overall diocesan mission. The OCF plans and conducts major diocesan fundraising programs including the Proud to be Catholic Pastoral Services Appeal (PSA), the For Christ Forever Capital Campaign, the Conference on Business & Ethics, the annual Wills & Trusts Weeks and other special fundraising events. The Foundation also manages endowments and various charitable funds and grants funds according to the donor’s intent. For more information, visit www.OrangeCatholicFoundation.org or call 714-282-3021.
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