On February 4, 2021, Sister Mary Ann Kuttner received an unexpected surprise during a virtual meeting with members of the School Sisters of Notre Dame (SSND) Central Pacific and Atlantic-Midwest Provincial Councils. She was told that the councils wanted to honor the members of the Archives Task Force in creating the SSND North American Archives (NAA) in Milwaukee. The real purpose of the meeting, however, was to dedicate the Sister Mary Ann Kuttner Archives Room at the NAA.
When the NAA was dedicated in 2018, each room was named in honor of a Sister except for the main archives room which holds all the archival materials. In late 2019, both Provincial Councils agreed that Sister Mary Ann’s contributions to the congregation and the creation of the NAA made her a worthy candidate for the honor. A dedication of the room was scheduled for April 2020 but was cancelled due to COVID-19.
At the dedication, Sister Charmaine Krohe, Atlantic-Midwest Provincial Leader, said she was honored to express gratitude for Sister Mary Ann’s work in making the NAA a dream come true. She stated that people did not know the amount of work that went on behind the scenes. “All we know is the beauty of what we see,” said Sister Charmaine. Sister Debra Sciano, Central Pacific Provincial Leader, also thanked Sister Mary Ann for her many numerous contributions to the congregation and finished by saying, “We are proud of you, we are extremely grateful for the way you shared your many, many gifts and who you are as a vowed woman religious, as a School Sister of Notre Dame.”
Michele Levandoski, NAA archivist, read a statement written by Sisters Charlaine Fill and Mary Kay Ash, who served with Sister Mary Ann on the Archives Task Force. Michele then unveiled a plaque which will hang above the door to the NAA. It reads: “In honor of Sister Mary Ann Kuttner for extraordinary contribution to preserving SSND history. With gratitude from the School Sisters of Notre Dame.” Sisters Helen Jane Jaeb and Mary Kay Brooks, Central Pacific Provincial Councilors, then presented Sister Mary Ann with a photo of the plaque. Finally, Sister Christine Garcia, Central Pacific Provincial Councilor and Sister Deborah Cerullo, Atlantic-Midwest Provincial Councilor, blessed the plaque, the room and Sister Mary Ann herself.
Sister Mary Ann was very appreciative of the honor, although she was left speechless by the surprise. She thanked the councils for their support and said that help was always there when needed. Sister Charmaine ended the ceremony by letting everyone know that they would be sending more materials to the Sister Mary Ann Kuttner Archives Room very soon!