John A. Wiater '75
John A. Wiater '75 has been all of these things over the course of a career that has pursued the mission of community service on a global scale. Across the planet, where there has been strife and starvation, John has ventured to bring resolution and sustenance. And, in this manner, he has made his work the manifestation of the Gospel message.
Upon graduating from Holy Cross, John joined Catholic Relief Services, an international aid organization. Serving first as an assistant representative in Columbia and Peru, he soon became a country representative in Paraguay. Seeing firsthand the devastating effects of third-world poverty reinforced John's dedication to a life of service and support. Never losing hope, always striving toward betterment, John moved food and provisions into places where the necessities of life were often in short supply. One of the unsung heroes of the relief process, he labored quietly but effectively and with an unwavering commitment to an ongoing mission of mercy.
In 1985, he assumed responsibility for community development in Cameroon, Guinea, Chad, the Central African Republic and Zaire. In 1987, John moved to war-torn Ethiopia, where he oversaw his organization's administrative, finance and logistical operations - managing a 150,000-megaton annual food-aid program, which provided desperately needed aid to over one million Ethiopians.
In 1992, John moved to Guatemala, overseeing the management of development programs, including initiatives for child health care, sustainable agriculture and human rights. In February 2003, he joined the United Nations Mission in Kosovo, eventually directing the department of justice's administrative division. He has recently accepted a new position with the United Nations, in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (Kinshasa). And, so, another corner of the world is made more humane by John's honesty, integrity and initiative.
For his three decades of service at the front lines of humanitarian efforts, for his skills as an administrator in places of hatred and times of chaos, and for the tenacity of his belief in the ongoing progress of global efforts toward peace and justice, the College of the Holy Cross presents to John A. Wiater the Sanctae Crucis Award.