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Slideshow: The 2017 <br>West Coast Alumni Dinner

Slideshow: The 2017
West Coast Alumni Dinner

Posted: June 7, 2017

It was an evening of looking back at Thomas Aquinas College’s earliest days and forward to a promising future Saturday, when nearly 200 alumni met for the annual Alumni Association Dinner on the Santa Paula campus.

  • West Coast Alumni Association Dinner 2017
    Slideshow: West Coast Alumni Dinner 2017
  • West Coast Alumni Association Dinner 2017
    Slideshow: West Coast Alumni Dinner 2017
  • West Coast Alumni Association Dinner 2017
    Slideshow: West Coast Alumni Dinner 2017
  • West Coast Alumni Association Dinner 2017
    Slideshow: West Coast Alumni Dinner 2017
  • West Coast Alumni Association Dinner 2017
    Slideshow: West Coast Alumni Dinner 2017
  • West Coast Alumni Association Dinner 2017
    Slideshow: West Coast Alumni Dinner 2017
  • West Coast Alumni Association Dinner 2017
    Slideshow: West Coast Alumni Dinner 2017
  • West Coast Alumni Association Dinner 2017
    Slideshow: West Coast Alumni Dinner 2017
  • West Coast Alumni Association Dinner 2017
    Slideshow: West Coast Alumni Dinner 2017
  • West Coast Alumni Association Dinner 2017
    Slideshow: West Coast Alumni Dinner 2017
  • West Coast Alumni Association Dinner 2017
    Slideshow: West Coast Alumni Dinner 2017
  • West Coast Alumni Association Dinner 2017
    Slideshow: West Coast Alumni Dinner 2017
  • West Coast Alumni Association Dinner 2017
    Slideshow: West Coast Alumni Dinner 2017
  • West Coast Alumni Association Dinner 2017
    Slideshow: West Coast Alumni Dinner 2017
  • West Coast Alumni Association Dinner 2017
    Slideshow: West Coast Alumni Dinner 2017
  • West Coast Alumni Association Dinner 2017
    Slideshow: West Coast Alumni Dinner 2017
  • West Coast Alumni Association Dinner 2017
    Slideshow: West Coast Alumni Dinner 2017
  • West Coast Alumni Association Dinner 2017
    Slideshow: West Coast Alumni Dinner 2017
  • West Coast Alumni Association Dinner 2017
    Slideshow: West Coast Alumni Dinner 2017

The guest of honor for the occasion was Shane O’Reilly (’95), staff vice president for corporate sourcing at Anthem, Inc., who has recruited several fellow alumni to work for the healthcare conglomerate. Indeed, one of those recruits, Pete LaFave (’13), who works at Anthem as a strategic sourcing consultant, introduced Mr. O’Reilly to the group. “It doesn’t stop just with the hiring,” said Mr. LaFave of Mr. O’Reilly’s commitment to the College’s alumni. “Shane ensures that every graduate/alumnus of TAC that is at Anthem is looked after, has the tools that they need to succeed, and often plays the role of mentor.”

Thanking his alma mater for the honor, Mr. O’Reilly remarked, “This place has had an amazing influence on me and on my life. It has formed my intellectual thinking (to the extent to which I’m capable), and it was my spiritual foundation, as well.” He added that his hiring of Thomas Aquinas graduates is less an altruistic deed than an act of simple self-interest. “We’ve recruited at UCLA; we’ve recruited at USC; we’ve recruited at Berkeley; we’ve recruited at a number of leading institutions in the Midwest,” Mr. O’Reilly explained. “What I’ve done is to put our graduates up against the graduates from those schools, those places where you are specifically trained — apparently — to succeed in business. The reality is that the TAC students won.”

Mr. O’Reilly’s brother, the College’s vice president for development, Dr. Paul J. O’Reilly, then took the dais to offer a toast. “On behalf of Thomas Aquinas College, thank you, Shane, for being an exemplary alumnus,” said Dr. O’Reilly. “We are so grateful for all that you have done for the College.” The Alumni Association additionally used the evening to honor two classes, the Class of 2007, which was celebrating its 10th reunion, and the Class of 1987, which was celebrating its 30th.