Wilkes-Barre, Pa., December 22, 2022—This past October, King’s College celebrated Rose Marie Panzitta, recipient of the Rev. James Lackenmier, C.S.C., Award for Achievement and Leadership, at the Westmoreland Club in Wilkes-Barre, with the event raising gross proceeds totaling $346,625 in support of the College’s Presidential Hope Fund.

Approximately 300 alumni, students, faculty, and friends of the College attended the celebration of Mrs. Panzitta who was the first female recipient of the Lackenmier Award. She was selected for her extensive contributions to many charitable organizations as well as her sustained support of the College’s Presidential Hope Fund.

Established in 2014, the Fund is a critical retention tool that provides additional financial support for King’s students in need. Depending on a student’s unique circumstances, resources in this fund help cover the cost of tuition, room, board, and/or books. To date, approximately $1.65 million has been allocated directly to nearly 1,500 financially at-risk students.

The Rev. James Lackenmier, C.S.C., Award for Achievement and Leadership was established in honor of the College’s seventh president, Rev. James Lackenmier, C.S.C., and his 18 years of leadership. The award is bestowed upon a member of the community who has achieved excellence in their field, who has demonstrated exceptional philanthropy and high ethical standards, and who embodies the spirit of King's College. Past recipients of the award include Timothy Morris ’64; Richard J. Pinola ’67; Allan M. Kluger, Esq.; Glenn Tyranski ’84; Thomas R. Smith ’77; and David Selingo, Esq. ’89.

The 16th annual McGowan School of Business Forum preceded the award dinner, connecting students with leaders in the business field, most of whom are King's graduates. The Forum provides valuable mentoring sessions and networking opportunities while also showcasing the strength of Lackenmier Award recipients and the direct impact the Presidential Hope Fund has on students. Since 2005, approximately 85 students each year have participated in the Forum, which rotates between New York City, Philadelphia, and Wilkes-Barre.

Rose Marie Panzitta