2017 Gala Honoree
Sister Donna M. Pollard, O.P.
The Dominican Sisters and St. Pius X High School Foundation are deeply honored and proud to celebrate Sister Donna M. Pollard, O.P. by presenting her with the 2017 Del Sarto Humanitarian Award.
Sister Donna M. Pollard, O.P. is Prioress of the Dominican Sisters of Houston.
Sr. Donna grew up in Queens in New York City and graduated from St. Francis Prep in Fresh Meadows, N.Y. Sister Donna earned a B.S. from the University of Houston in secondary education, an M.A. from Aquinas Institute in systematic theology in St. Louis, Mo., and an M.Ed. from Boston College in private school administration.
In 1980, she began her career at St. Pius X High School as biology teacher and coach. After two years of study, in 1985, Sr. Donna returned to St. Pius X as science teacher, department chair, and the School’s varsity women’s basketball and assistant volleyball coach. She then served at St. Agnes Academy as a teacher, varsity track, assistant basketball coach and Dean of Students from 1988-91.
In 1991, she assumed the responsibility as St. Pius X’s Head of School/Principal and continued in that ministry for 25 years (until 2016). As Head of School, Sr. Donna doubled enrollment, expanded curricular offerings and programs for students who need academic assistance, augmented the service learning, athletic and extra-curricular programs, increased faculty and staff benefits and expanded and improved the facilities and campus through the completion of several capital campaigns including the $13 million School renovation and construction of the Raye G. and Edward P. White Center for the Sciences and Media (opened fall 2016). As a member of the St. Pius X High School Board of Directors and Foundation Board of Trustees, Sr. Donna partners with the Board and the School administration as they inspire the mission and vision of the School while ensuring that the SPX community embraces the Dominican charism as they “Teach Truth and Preach Justice” in the world today. As Head of School, Sr. Donna was a member of the Dominican Association of Secondary Schools, the National Catholic Education Association, Houston Association of Independent Schools, National Association of Secondary School Principals, Texas Association of Secondary School Principals, Southern Association of Colleges and Schools/AdvancED, Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development, Phi Kappa Phi, John Paul II Catholic School Board of Directors, has served on the National Catholic Education Association Secondary School’s Executive Committee as representative for Region 10 (TX, OK, AK), and has been a chairperson for the Texas Catholic Conference Education Department Visiting Team for Accreditation.
A recipient of numerous awards, Sr. Donna holds the NCEA Catholic Secondary Schools Department Award, KHOU Channel 2 Sunshine Award, 2006 St. Anne Catholic School Crusader Award, 2013 St. Ambrose Catholic School Te Deum Laudamus Award, Texas Christian Interscholastic League (T.C.I.L.) Coach of the Year Award and Track State Champion Coach (two years), and the Bishop Francis Mugavero Award (Brooklyn Diocese).