DAVE UNGRU<br /><br /><!-- 1upcrlf2 -->2013 Golden Shamrock winner

2013 Golden Shamrock winner
Local businessman Dave Ungru is Prince of Peace Catholic Schools' selection for this year's Golden Shamrock Award.

Each year, the school honors a person for his or her long-term support and involvement. It is the school's most prestigious honor.

"When Patty and Phil (Kahn, president of Prince of Peace Catholic Schools) came in and notified me I was going to win this year's award, I was really so shocked and humbled," Ungru said.

Ungru was integral in building Prince of Peace's biggest annual fundraising event, the Auction Gala.

"He was very involved early on with the dinner auction," Kahn said. "He was considered one of the original auction people. He was the MC or auctioneer at some of the first auctions at the school. Today we raise about $80,000 in one night."

Ungru said that former school principal Nancy Gavin first came up with the idea to hold an auction night. Ungru attended as a guest.

"Next year she asked me if I would chair it," Ungru said. "I was the auctioneer from the second year to the 14th year.

"The auction just kept getting bigger and bigger until it became what it is now."

This year's auction will be Feb. 16 at the Boys and Girls Club and will have both a traditional and silent auction.

Besides being the occasional auctioneer for the school, Ungru has also made several donations through his businesses - Koehler Tire & Supply and Koehler Welding - to the school.

"Those donations help us, whether it be our buses or helping us be able to buy supplies for school," Kahn said.

All three of Ungru's sons attend the Prince of Peace schools. His youngest son graduated in 2007, but that hasn't stopped Ungru's involvement.

"I just wanted to do what I could after my kids were done with school," Ungru said. "I just felt it had done so much for my kids, I just wanted the next generation and the kids to come to have the same advantage my kids had."

Ungru will be honored at an all-schools Mass on Jan. 31 at 8 a.m. in the Shawe Memorial gymnasium. A reception will follow. The event and reception are open to the public.