Graduates of the former Bishop David High School have formed a new alumni association and hope to use their strengths to benefit Catholic education in southwest Jefferson County.
“We want to be like the Catholic Education Foundation of southwest Jefferson County,” said Kevin Brever, chair of the Bishop David High School Alumni Association and a 1969 graduate of the school.
Brever retired as principal of St. Paul School in 2017. He previously served as principal of Holy Cross High School and as a teacher at Bishop David.
His experiences, he said, showed him how important the CEF’s support is to Catholic schools.
“The effect the Catholic Education Foundation had at St. Paul was astronomical. It saved St. Paul,” he said. “That’s where we want to be as an organization. It’s time we do everything we can to ensure Catholic education is maintained and strengthened in Jefferson County.”
The association aims to assist elementary schools in the Dixie Highway corridor, Notre Dame Academy, St. Paul and St. Andrew Academy, as well as Holy Cross High School .
Brever said Bishop David, an all-boy school, has about 2,500 alumni. It was open from 1960 to 1984. It closed after the 1983-84 school year and merged with the nearby Angela Merici High School for girls to form the co-ed Holy Cross on the Bishop David site.
An alumni group initially formed at the time of the merger, said Brever, but “a lot of the guys didn’t feel real great about it.”
With the passage of time and a desire to see Catholic education succeed, attitudes have shifted and the alumni group has been resurrected, Brever said.
Dr. Paul Kelty, a graduate of the class of 1965, said the group is enthusiastic and is full of ideas.
“I grew up in Shively, graduated from St. Helen’s. The people in that end of town have to struggle,” he said. “My parents sacrificed to send me to Bishop David. I can pay that back.”
The group held a golf scramble in late October that raised more than $5,000 for tuition assistance. And so far this year the association has given Holy Cross $6,500 for tuition assistance.
“I think we’re off to a good start. That was just from dues and a few events,” said Kelty.
He noted that the youngest graduate of Bishop David is 55 years old, which means the alumni association can only do this work for so long.
With an eye to the future, members hope to partner with graduates of Angela Merici and invite graduates of Holy Cross to join in the effort to support Catholic education in the area.
“We don’t just want B.D. grads, we want to encourage the Angela Merici girls and the Holy Cross graduates to join us. And hopefully the kids who graduate will want to join us and it perpetuates,” Kelty said.
On Veterans Day last week, the alumni association held a memorial, in particular, honoring five alumni who died in Vietnam. The association also has regular meetings and invites all alumni to attend.
“We really want to just get things started and get the word out. Come to a meeting; get involved,” said Brever. “We’re trying to make it easy for guys to join and to give.”
Holy Cross has honored its “parent” schools in various ways. At a recent football game, the team wore black and white — the old Bishop David colors.
“They do what they can to maintain the legacy,” Brever said. “Bishop David and Angela Merici are the parents and Holy Cross is the child. And that’s pretty accurate — a lot of Angela Merici and Bishop David guys are married. There are a lot of kids out there that are part of both traditions.”
To join the association or for more information, look for the group’s Facebook page or contact Brever at email@example.com, or write to the Bishop David Alumni Association, ℅ Holy Cross High School, 5144 Dixie Highway, Louisville, Ky., 40216.