The Mount Rushmore of beloved figures at Holy Names is so extensive, you’d need more than one range to include them all. This year’s recipient of the John H. Farrell “Building the Future” Award is surely among them.

Helen Caulfield Spiro ’78 is a Holy Names legacy. Her mother is an alumna. So are her sisters and her niece.

That’s why she had no problem taking Sr. Constance Casey up on her offer to teach Chemistry. “She said ‘try it for a year, and if you don’t like it, you don’t have to do it again.’ I ended up staying for eight years.”

Mrs. Spiro went from cheerleading in the 70’s –she says Bleecker Stadium was the place to be before, during, and after football games on the weekends – to coaching cheerleading herself. There she led her squads to the National Cheerleaders Association Summer Camps each year, where they received the Award of Excellence and bids to national competitions.

Cheerleading holds a special place in her heart – she got engaged to her future husband, whom she met here at AHN, at cheer practice.

When the spring of 1990 rolled around, Mrs. Spiro decided it was time for a change. She went on to receive her master’s in counseling from the College of Saint Rose, before returning in 2003 to take over AHN’s College Counseling Office, where she remained for more than a decade. She also helped oversee the Student Council and organized the Holly Ball.

“I often say I have one daughter at home, and 200 at school.” On any given day you can still find her roaming the halls, often substituting, or assisting with special events. It is no wonder the award she is receiving is for her service and dedication to Holy Names. Spiro’s commitment to Holy Names and its student body has helped in AHN’s growth and development, leaving a lifelong imprint on its campus, families, and students.