Greetings to the Notre Dame Family and Friends,

I am Mark McGowan, the Midwest Regional Director since July 1, 2019. I am a 1971 grad living in West Bloomfield, Michigan.  Much of my life has been influenced by events at our University.  I met my wife Ann Burlas SMC ’72 while we were students at Notre Dame.  My first science teacher at ND was also the priest who baptized my Dad ’44 his senior year at ND, so he could become engaged to marry my Mom, SMC ,46, when he returned from WWII. They went on to have 12 children.  My Dad served as President of the ND Club of Jackson, MI long ago.  Ann and I have 5 grown children.  Three of them obtained ND undergraduate degrees.  I have been active in the ND Detroit Club for many years and am honored to now serve on the NDAA Board of Directors.

The dedicated Midwest Affinity Regional Directors Team is composed of Lukas Mendoza '08 (Diversity); Pat Scanlon '78 (ND Senior Alumni); Emily de Araujo Snider '14 (ND Women Connect); Megan Irving '19 and Tom White '14 (Young ND).

The Midwest Region covers all of Michigan and Indiana.  It comprises of 3 AA Clubs, 2 A Clubs, 2 B Clubs, 3 C Clubs, 5 D Clubs, 5 E Clubs and 1 F Club.  Force for Good 2020 awards were presented to 15 of them!

Recent Club news includes:

Detroit is hosting 3 students in the SSLP program this summer. Families have volunteered to host them to their homes for dinner (outdoors) for about 8 dates.

Fort Wayne has given special care to its at-risk community with a blood drive, a Project Mom/ Baby shower at a local Women’s Care Center, and by supporting a goods drive and fund-raising event.

Grand Rapids successfully held a “virtual golf outing” (no golf, but participants were still asked to contribute to the scholarship fund) …and it worked!  They raised about 50% of the normal gross revenue but had no significant expense!

Indianapolis also utilized “virtual” technology with their annual student send off for incoming freshmen complimented by send-off care packages and pairing incoming students with upper classmates.

Southwest Indiana did not let Covid interfere with its tradition of giving local scholarships to their Catholic grade school. The Club is well-funded and voted to share $10,000 of its Club’s scholarship funds with other Clubs in Indiana.

St. Joseph Valley got into the virtual swing with trivial nights and virtual coffees.  They are focusing on Club branding concepts (new logo for tee-shirts, key rings, etc.) should be interesting to see how that works.

We are looking forward to our next Midwest Regional Meeting which will tentatively be held Saturday January 22, 2022 on Campus--just eleven days after the College Football National Championship game…GO IRISH!!

Other news