Richard Arians, President

Serra Club of Mankato, MN

Richard Arians first joined the Serra Club of Mankato, MN, in 1995, and joined the Rochester, MN, club when he moved there in 2001. In Rochester he served two non-consecutive terms as president and a term as District 7-S governor. Upon relocating to the Mankato area, he re-joined his original club, serving a term as President while also serving as the Region 8 director. Richard has been a regular contributor USA Council Rally’s and leadership trainings. He has been the chairman of the Leadership Committee for the past two years.

“As Programs Vice President, I work with the organization to reinforce the critical nature of its mission and re-engage all leaders in this mission,” he says. “Serrans need to maintain a focus on our critical need for vocations in our Church.”

Mr. Arians has an undergraduate degree in Mathematics Education from the University of Wisconsin and earned an MBA from Augsburg College (MN) in 2012. His professional interests include serving as a business consultant for local companies, a USTA tennis umpire, and supplemental insurance agent. He regularly substitutes as a teacher at the Loyola Catholic High School in Mankato, Minnesota. He and his wife Ruth live in Madison Lake, MN, where they are active members of All Saints Catholic Church. They have two children.

J. Michael Downey, President-Elect and Central Regional Director

Serra Club of Des Moines, IA

Michael Downey.  Born 1952.  Raised in Des Moines, IA.  Industrial Engineering degree: Iowa State University, 1974.  Law Degree, University of Iowa 1977.  Law Clerk Iowa Supreme Court Justice Mark McCormick 1977-1978.  Associate General Counsel, Des Moines Register and Tribune Co. 1978-1980.  President of Register affiliated printing company Commercial Printing, Inc. 1981-1986.  My family purchased the company in 1986 and renamed it Downey Printing Inc. specializing in printing and binding telephone directories in North America.  Sold business in 1998.  Retired.  CEO Handera Inc., a Palm licensee and designer and manufacturer of hand held computing devices 1999-2012.  CEO & President of Schafer Systems, a plastic manufacturer 2005-2007.

Lay Advisory Committee to Des Moines Vocations Director 1999-2003.  Joined Serra 2003.  Offices held in Des Moines Serra Club:  VP Vocations, President, VP Communications.  Chaired two Region 9 Conventions in Des Moines IA: 2005 and 2015.  District Governor for Iowa 2013-2018.  Currently Chair, US Serra Leadership Committee.

Judy Cozzens, Past President

Serra Club of St. Paul, MN

A cradle Catholic and a Catholic college graduate, Judy Cozzens is best known in Serra as the enthusiastic speaker and chairperson for College Connection for Catholics. She is no longer chair, but continues to advise and volunteer for the initiative, now called Newman Connection, which connects high school graduates with the Catholic presence at their college, especially ones that have campus ministry offices.

She is also a frequent speaker at Serra regional conferences on the topics of “Starting Parish Vocation Activities” and “Passing on Our Beautiful Catholic Faith.” Judy was honored as the Outstanding Serran of the Year for District 6 in 2006 and 2010.

Judy has held the offices of Communications and Programs vice president for the Serra Club of Southwest Denver. She is currently a member of the Twin Cities, MN club. She is the a member of USAC’s national Vocations Committee, and was the Vice President for Vocations from 2015-2016.

Judy is a very active volunteer in pro-life ministries and volunteers as support staff for training missionaries at NET Ministries, an organization which evangelizes to young Catholics via retreats, Masses, and other activities targeted to youth.

“My husband and I believe that we have been blessed with good health and time and should use our retirement to give thanks to the Lord and promote His work in our family, our community and our nation,” says Judy.

Last but certainly not least, Judy’s son, Andrew Cozzens, was ordained auxiliary bishop of the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis on Dec. 9, 2013. He succeeds Bishop Peter Christensen as Episcopal Adviser for the USA Council on April 5, 2014. She asks for prayers for him in his new journey.

Dr. Anne D. Roat, Vice President Vocations

Serra Club of Lafayette, IN

Anne Roat first encountered Serra in 1992, when she was invited by the Chaplin of the Lafayette Serrans to speak about her ministry as a Director of Religious Education at her parish.  The local club was composed mainly of men and later welcomed both single and married women.  In 2004, Anne and her husband Bill joined the Lafayette Serra Club.  Anne served as a member of the Membership Committee, Treasurer, Trustee, and member of the Bylaws Committee, while Bill served as President and Treasurer.

Anne currently ministers as a Spiritual Director and works as the Director of Evangelization, Family Life, and Pastoral Ministries at the St. Mary Cathedral and St. Ann Church Pastorate in Lafayette.  She has also been the Director of the Diocese of Lafayette-in-Indiana Office of Catechesis, parish Director of Religious Education, and a Catholic School Vice Principal.

Anne holds a Master’s degree in Pastoral Theology from Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College, a Doctor of Ministry degree from the Graduate Theological Foundation, and a theology certificate from the University of Notre Dame.  Anne and her husband Bill have two adult children, five brilliant grandsons, and one beautiful granddaughter!

Betty Ramirez-Lara, Vice President Programs

Serra Club of McAllen, TX

Betty Ramirez-Lara is the President/Owner of Utilities Services Experts USA, an Energy Brokerage Firm for consumer use.  Betty attended University of Texas – Pan American Rio Grande Valley Texas.  She raised 2 boys as a single mother. Betty met and married fellow Serran Adam Lara in 2008 as he was visiting her Rotary Club. They both enjoy volunteering and serving their community together.

Betty and Adam joined Serra Club of McAllen in 2014.  They immediately were selected to serve on the Board of Directors and work together on increasing membership by facilitating workshops throughout the Diocese of Brownsville. She is currently a Serra International Trustee. Bishop Daniel Flores asked Betty and Adam to serve on the Case Development Council for the Diocese of Brownsville.  Betty has served on other Boards and Foundations mainly focusing in recent years on Rotary International.

Jesse Gallegos, Vice President Communications

Serra Club of Harlingen, TX

After earning a Bachelor of Science Degree in 1980, Jesse was a public school teacher until 1995, when he earned a Master’s Degree in Education Administration from Pan American University. From 1995 through 2014, he was a middle school and high school assistant principal and principal. Jesse retired from the public schools in 2014 and currently is a licensed Real Estate Agent with Ideal Realty. Jesse is married to Delma Solis Gallegos. They have two adult children, Stacey Marie and Ezekiel Jesus.

Jesse was the founding member of the Serra Club of Harlingen which was chartered on August 14, 2001 with the guidance and mentorship of his brother, Dr. Ruben Gallegos, Serra International President. Jesse has been President, Treasurer, and Secretary of his club. He was District Governor for District 126 from 2017 through 2020. He has attended several Serra International Conventions and USA Council Rallies.

As Serrans, service is the priority for our Catholic Church, priests and religious. Jesse is honored to serve as VP Communications for the USA Serra Council. In this position, Jesse’s objective is to move Serra forward and make Serra a name that resonates among all Catholics.

Candice Tyrrell, Vice President Membership

Serra Club of North Houston, TX

Candice Tyrrell received her bachelor’s degree from U. of Houston, then worked as a buyer and supervisor of Metallurgical Records for 34 years at Cameron Iron Works. She and her husband Ed married in 1989 and are very active in their church, Christ the Good Shepherd in Spring.
After Candice became president of the Serra Club of North Houston, she tripled the size of the club. She received an award from the Serra Governor for Outstanding Achievement in promoting Vocations in 2016. At the Serra Intl. Convention 2018 she was presented with an award for the largest Serra Club in the world and the same year was honored with the “Fishers of Men Award” at the Guadalupe Radio Network gala for promoting Vocations. Candice initiated a Serra pilgrimage to EWTN, where Serran Susan Stawaisz, three seminarians from St. Mary’s Houston and her were on the “At Home with Jim & Joy” TV show. In May 2019, Candice was installed as Serra Governor of the Archdiocese of Galveston Houston and Beaumont by Cardinal DiNardo. Her goal is to work tirelessly for more priests and sisters, promoting the Called by Name, Altar Server Recognition,  and Travelling Crucifix programs and more Adoration at parishes. She was honored with The Face of Serra Award at the Serra Rally 2020.

Cocot Ratuiste, Secretary

Serra Club of Tri-Cities Area, WA

A cradle Catholic, Cocot got her Catholic education from kindergarten through college. She earned a B.S. degree in Foods and Nutrition and is a registered dietitian. She has been a member of Serra since 2010. She has held several positions since she joined Serra. She was VP of Programs (together with her husband Morie), VP of Communications and is currently serving in her third year as Club President. Cocot has been an active parishioner of St. Patrick in Pasco, WA since 1992. She is also a volunteer chaplain, coordinator of the extraordinary Eucharistic ministers in all English Masses, secretary of the Women of St. Patrick, volunteer at St. Vincent De Paul’s clothing division, brings Communion to the homebound, and is a prayer warrior. She has two sons. One is a priest and Vocations Director of the Diocese of Spokane, and the other is an electrical engineer in the Air Force. Cocot and Morie have four grandchildren.

Bob Campney, Treasurer

Serra Club of West Omaha, NE

Bob Campney, member of Serra Club of West Omaha since 1989, previously serving as President twice, VP Programs, VP Vocations, Trustee and more. Bob led the 2017 Omaha Regional, served as District Governor 2014-2018 and on the audit committee for USA Council. Bob is a CPA, now retired who spent most of his career as a Treasurer and CFO for two different firms. Bob and his wife Rose of almost 48 years are active members of St. Vincent de Paul Church. He has led their Vocations Committee for many years, a choir member for 25+ years, an EMHC and helped lead their Perpetual Eucharistic Adoration.

Mark Bonkiewicz, Northeast Regional Director

Serra Club of Omaha, NE

Past USA Council Membership Vice President Mark Bonkiewicz is well known in Serra for his engaging and dynamic speaking style. Mark has served his Omaha Serra club as president, Membership and Programs vice president, and as trustee. He also served as District 9-W governor for four years.

Mark may have been a Serran for only 12 years, but in those 12 years he has recruited 10 new members for his own club and led three different teams to charter three new clubs with a total of 94 members. “Two of the clubs are located in the Grand Island, NE Diocese, where there are more cows than Catholics!” Mark says.

Mark’s business career of over 40 years has focused on outside sales, marketing, and sales management. He owned and operated his own consulting business for 11 years.  Currently he is Senior Sales Associate at Orent Graphics of Omaha Nebraska.   He is a member of the National Speakers Association.

Gino Dimattia, Great Lakes Regional Director

Serra Club of Lima, OH

A native of Wichita, Kansas, Region 6 Director Gino Dimattia became a member of the Serra Club of Lima, OH, in 1997. “I joined Serra to help connect with fellow Catholics in what was a new community for me,” he recalls.

Gino went on to serve as chairman of the Parish Contact Team, club chairman of Vocations Committee, club president, District 51 governor in 2009, chairman of USA Council Vocations Committee in 2010, and USA Council Vice President of Vocations.

In his role as national Vocations vice president, Gino was able to bring Serra’s message to the wider vocations community. “With the assistance of members of the Vocations Committee and the feedback of Serra clubs, I was able to write an article on how parish vocation committees can influence a culture of vocations that was published in the Summer 2013 issue of Horizon Magazine,” he says. “This (magazine) is published quarterly by NRVC, an organization with which Serra has a working relationship in the area of vocation ministry.”

Gino is unmarried and works at St. Rita’s Medical Center as an occupational therapist.

Jo-Ann Bresowar, South Central Regional Director

Serra Club of University of Dallas, TX

Jo-Ann Bresowar has been a member of the University of Dallas Serra Club for over 20 years. She is a past President of the University of Dallas Serra Club and past Chairperson of the District’s Vocational Awareness Program (VAP).  In the past Jo­­-Ann was President of the Diocesan School Board, Chaired Parish Finance Councils, served as a Red Cross Volunteer, is a founding member of the Diocesan Ministry on Disabilities, was Chair of the Laity representation for the Texas Catholic Conference and a Catholic School Grant writer.
Jo-Ann attended the University of Dallas, SMU and UTA. Her career was in Human Resource management with a specialty in International Compensation and Benefits. She worked for major international corporations as well as the US Department of Energy. Jo-Ann retired from Alcon Laboratories in 2010.
It was at a Serra International Convention in Chicago that Jo-Ann first heard of the John Paul II Monstrance. The year was 2014 and she was that year’s Chairperson of the VAP. Since that time District 46 has had the now St. John Paul II Monstrance for adoration in our dioceses for 7 consecutive years.
Jo-Ann is now the District Governor for District 46. The District is no longer 46E and 46W but is one district which now includes the Tyler Diocese. District 46 (Dioceses of Dallas, Fort Worth and Tyler, Texas) will be the host for the Serra US Rally in 2021 and 2022.

Jerry Biese, North Central Regional Director

Serra Club of Minneapolis-St. Paul, MN

Jerry Biese grew up on a farm near Green Bay WI with four brothers and six sisters.

His degree is in Industrial education from the University of Wisconsin-Stout in Menomonie, WI. He was active in the Newman Club and served as president of the local club and was an officer of the region and finished as a national vice president.

Jerry’s career started in a medium security prison as a welding instructor. After a year, he learned of the movement to serve people with disabilities in the community. He served as executive director of a facility in Eau Claire, WI for 17 years and finished as President of Opportunity Partners in Minnetonka, MN for 11 years. Since then he has been doing either financial services and/or Medicare insurance working with individuals age 65 or older.

Jerry married Mary Beth in 1965, having 4 daughters and one son. They now have 21 grandsons and 15 granddaughters, all practicing Catholics.

Jerry’s membership with Serra started in 2006 when he was invited to a meeting by the late Mike Pohlen. Serving as President soon followed, the District Governor position followed and then a few terms as the District Treasurer of District 7 of Region 8.

Morie Ratuiste, Pacific Northwest Regional Director

Serra Club of Tri-Cities Area, WA

Morie and his wife Cocot have been married for over 30 years and are blessed with two grown sons. They were first introduced to Serra when their two sons were just in grade school. It took them about 10 years before they could join Serra – a good reminder that it is never too early to plant that seed of invitation. In 2010 they joined the Serra Club of Tri-Cities and ever since have held several club positions with increasing responsibilities including President and District Governor. Morie introduced the “9 For 9 Challenge” – that is to match our patron St. Junipero’s 9 missions that he established in California with 9 new members. That initiative so far has yielded 15 new members in the Serra Club of Tri-Cities, of which 90% are still active in the club leadership. Morie currently serves on the USA Council Program Committee.

Morie served on the Filipino American Association of Tri-Cities as president for four years, led a charismatic prayer group, and is a Knight of Columbus’ past Deputy Grand Knight. He was active in Boy Scouts of America until both of his sons became Eagle scouts. He had also been a Board member of the local college prep high school. Morie is an active member of St. Patrick Church in Pasco, WA where he and his wife serve as Extraordinary Eucharistic ministers, help in marriage prep, and is a volunteer hospital chaplain. Morie is a member of the parish council and a cantor in the choir.

Morie earned a B.S. degree in Industrial Engineering from Central Colleges of the Philippines.

Diana Seixas, Pacific Region Co-Director

Serra Club of City of Fresno, CA

A former member of the Santa Clara, CA, Serra Club, Diana Seixas is now a Fresno club member and has served Serra in many positions over the past 15 years, including as club Membership and Vocations VP, and as club President. She has been a District Governor, Regional Director, and Vice President for the USA Council Communications Committee. She and her husband, Michael, are very active in Serra.

Ed Lupton, Pacific Region Co-Director

Serra Club of Buenaventura, CA

Ed Lupton of Ventura, California is a graduate of the University of Notre Dame with a degree in Finance.  Ed had a career in professional baseball, trust banking, assisted living facility owner, emergency planning consultant for the elderly and people with disabilities, author, and film producer.
With the Serra Club of San Buenaventura he was V.P. Communications; several years as club president; two years as District 4 Governor; and was in charge of the last two Serra USA Rallies in Ventura, California.
Ed has three grown children, Shaun, Lani, and Chris, and enjoys writing in his spare time.

Bob Bucheit, Rocky Mountain Region Director

Serra Club of Southeast Denver, CO

Bob and his wife, Virginia, live in Lakewood, Colorado. THey are members of St. Jude Catholic Church in Lakewood. Bob serves as a Eucharistic Minister at St. Jude and also a Caring Minister, taking the Eucharist to Catholic patients at Lutheran Medical Center every month.
He joined the Serra Club of Southwest Denver in February 2010 and has held the following positions: VP Communications, Club President, and currently Secretary. He is also a past District Governor.
The Bucheits have two daughters and two grandchildren.
Bob is retired from the General Services Administration and served in the US Air Force from October 1961 through October 1965.

Greg Schwietz, Acting Southeast Region Director

Serra Club of Omaha, NE

Greg joined Serra in 1983 in his longtime home Omaha, Nebraska. He worked in numerous capacities at the club level for many years until 1999-2000 when he served as club president. His commitment to the Serra Club of Omaha continues at the club board level as trustee.
Subsequent Serra Leadership positions include: District governor, USA Council Region Director, USA Council Board Member, Trustee Serra International Board, and President of the United States Council. Greg currently serves as acting Southeast Region Director on the USA Council board, and Vice President for Communications of the Serra International board.

Greg and his wife, Mary Lynn, have been married for 45 years and have three grown children. They are currently members of Sacred Heart Parish in Omaha. For many years Greg and Mary Lynn were in TEC (Teens Encounter Christ) retreats in Omaha, and served on its national leadership team for over 10 years. Greg retired as president of L&M Construction Chemicals in 2017, a family-owned company which produced and sold protective treatments for concrete, worldwide. Greg has worked in the concrete construction industry since graduating with a business degree from Creighton University in 1974.