SCOTCH PLAINS, NJ -- Union Catholic principal Sister Percylee Hart, RSM, was installed as the 2019 Union County St. Patrick’s Day Parade Grand Marshal during the Investiture Mass at Immaculate Heart of Mary on Saturday. 

The Mass was celebrated by Bishop James Massa, a 1978 graduate of Union Catholic and the Auxiliary Bishop of the Diocese of Brooklyn. Frank McGovern, who has served in the past as Grand Marshal and Parade General Chairperson, served as the Master of Ceremonies.

When Sister Percylee was presented with the Grand Marshal sash by 2011 Grand Marshal David Bell, she received a big ovation from the Union Catholic Community that filled the pews.

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“It’s an honor to accept on behalf of my family, the Sisters of Mercy, and Union Catholic High School,” Sister Percylee said. “It’s a special privilege to be the Grand Marshall and lead the honor of St. Patrick, the great Apostle of Ireland. Thank you to the parade committee for a great day each year for us to celebrate our Irish heritage.”

 A reception for the Grand Marshal followed at Shackamaxon Country Club.

Sister Percylee has chosen Dr. Jim Reagan Jr. as her Chief of Staff. Her other aides include: Noreen Andrews, Barbara Dellanno, Jennifer Dixon, Susan Dyckman, Sister Lisa Gambacorta, Sister Elaine McAteer, Dr. Karen Piasecki, James Reagan Sr., Sister Donna Jo Repetti, Joe & Karen Schurtz, Sister Ann Sullivan, Dave & Betsy Thornton, Marge Urso, Father Michael Ward, Mary Ellen Wischusen, Anne & Bob Wischusen, and Sister Alice Yohe.

The principal has spearheaded every major advance that Union Catholic has made since 1980 and is also a proud supporter of the school's Irish Vikings Club that has been active with the parade for many years. A sister of the Irish order of the Sisters of Mercy founded in Dublin by Catherine McAuley in 1831, she traces her Irish roots to County Sligo in the West of Ireland.

Prior to Union Catholic, Sister Percylee was the Principal of Red Bank Catholic High School from 1970-80. She serves as a member of the Advisory Committee and the Controversies Committee of the New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association (NJSIAA); is President of the Newark Archdiocese Regional Principals Association; and is Trustee Emerita at Georgian Court University, her alma mater. She holds a Masters of Public Administration from Seton Hall and a Master of Science from the University of Pennsylvania. Sister Percylee is a member of the National Catholic Educators Association and the National Association of Secondary School Principals.

For more information, visit Union County St. Patrick’s Day Parade website.

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