At last week’s city council meeting, Darien Mayor Kathleen Weaver fought back tears as she read a resolution recognizing Cathy Marchese as Darien’s 2013 Citizen of the Year.
According to the resolution, although Cathy has served in leadership positions community organizations, over the years, she “would rather be seen as a hard worker than as a group leader.”
“The actions of Cathy Marchese have served to make her a role model, not only for our community, but also for her three sons and their families,” Weaver read.
Cathy’s service to the community includes:
- Serving as a member of the Cass 2000 commission to study future building needs of School District 63
- Washing clothes for the PADS program
- Starting and chairing the Market Day program at Our Lady of Peace School for 10 years
- Initiating the Our Lady of Peace Home and School Association (with husband Joe) and helping to write the first constitution of the organization
- Serving as lunch mother for 12 years and room mother for three years at Our Lady of Peace School
- Lifetime membership in the Darien Historical Society (since 2002) and serves on the board of directors and as second vice president and membership chairperson; and chairing the society’s tag day and co-chairing its Sunday dinner events with Alice Brennan
- Membership in the Darien Woman’s Club since 2002, where she has served as membership director and hospitality committee
- Selling tickets to rides at Darien Fest for the woman’s club and chamber of commerce
- Serving as co-chair of the DarienFest planning committee
- Serving as a board member of the Darien Youth Club for eight years and running the group’s $100 raffle and selling refreshments at Sportscore events
- Serving on the hospitality committee at Hinsdale South High School for four years and as a volunteer scorer for the freshman basketball team
- Volunteering for the Darien Lions Club’s annual candy day fundraiser for more than 20 years, as well as for the group’s beer or corn tents at DarienFest, its annual food basket drive and for the group’s “Nightwalk” walk for sight fundraiser
- Fundraising for the American Cancer Society and the Alzheimer’s Research Fund
Besides all her volunteer work in the community, Weaver said “friends can always count on Cathy Marchese to take them to the doctor, watch their children or visit them when they are sick; [she is] the first one to help and the last to leave when help is needed.”
“Her selflessness, kindness, gentleness and helpfulness are hallmarks of who she is and what she is all about,” Weaver continued.
Weaver quoted “Life’s Little Instruction Book” by H. Jackson Brown, “Live so that when your children think of fairness and integrity, they think of you.”
“Cathy Marchese’s sons Jeff, Jon and Jameson have experienced this through all of the works that their mother has so humbly given to our city – and has been and continues to be a role model to all of the citizens of Darien,” Weaver said.
Cathy and her husband, Alderman Joe Marchese, have been married since 1973 and have three sons: Jeff (wife Christine and son Jake, 6 and daughter Ella, 2); John (wife Lynda) and Jameson (wife Kelly). The family has lived in Darien since 1986.