Most Rev. David J. Walkowiak, bishop of Grand Rapids, has received a national award recognizing his contributions to Catholic education. The National Catholic Educational Association (NCEA) honored Bishop Walkowiak with the Monsignor John F. Meyers Award during an April 22 ceremony at the association’s convention in Chicago.

According to the NCEA, “The Monsignor John F. Meyers Award is presented to an individual who has provided substantial support for Catholic education through contributions in areas of development, public relations, scholarship programs, financial management, or government relations. This award seeks to recognize a person whose work has national significance.”

Through Bishop Walkowiak’s bold leadership, the Bishop’s Catholic Schools Initiative led to enrollment growth among Catholic schools in the diocese in three of the last four years. The initiative also facilitated the development of the five-year “Catholic Schools: Bridging Faith and Future” strategic plan, which began guiding Catholic education in the diocese this school year. Already, the strategic plan has borne fruit through the opening of the new St. Robert Catholic School in Ada; the implementation of new, original curriculum standards; and enrolling the largest preschool class in 21 years and the largest kindergarten class in six years.

“Bishop Walkowiak’s faithful leadership and undying support have launched our Catholic schools onto a trajectory of vitality and, more importantly, missionary discipleship which will impact our students and the Church for years to come,” said David Faber, superintendent of Catholic schools in the diocese.

Please join us in congratulating Bishop Walkowiak!

Pictured above: Bishop Walkowiak (right) with NCEA President Dr. Thomas Burnford (left) and Monsignor John F. Meyers (center).

To learn more about Catholic schools in the Diocese of Grand Rapids, the “Catholic Schools: Bridging Faith and Future” strategic plan, or to contact a school, visit