Board of Advocates
Ad-vo-cate. n. Latin: ad-vocatus – one who pleads the case of another; a person who upholds or defends a cause; supporter; a person who intercedes on behalf of another; a proponent, champion.
The Spitzer Center Advocates are dedicated Catholic leaders who both promote and support our work in their dioceses and other Catholic organizations to which they belong.
Regent of Gonzaga University
Joseph Columbus is a life-long Alaskan, born in Anchorage when Alaska was still a U.S. Territory. He has worked as an independent computer consultant in graphic design and database programming, and has also been involved in a petroleum distribution company and a mobile home park.
Joe received a BA in Mathematics from Gonzaga University, where his fellow classmate and friend was Fr. Robert Spitzer. He spent 6 years in Rome, Italy, as a seminarian, earning a degree in philosophy from the Angelicum and a degree in theology from the Gregorian University before deciding that the priesthood was not his path in life.
In 2003, Fr. Spitzer appointed Joe to the Board of Regents at Gonzaga University, where he has served on the technology and missions committees up to the present time.
Joe and his wife, Gena, spend much of their time supporting a small Catholic school in Anchorage, Alaska, Holy Rosary Academy, as well as numerous other Catholic charities.
Chairman, President and CEO of the Furon Company (retired)
Santa Ana, CA.
Michael holds a BS in Economics from University of Santa Clara. He is the former Chairman, President and CEO of the Furon Group, a plastics manufacturing company. Michael retired in 1999 after thirty-two years with Furon.
Mike continues to be active in a variety of civic organizations including Taller San Jose in Santa Ana CA whose mission is to walk youth out of poverty by training them in job and life skills and the Orange Catholic Foundation, which raises and grants money for the needs of the Diocese of Orange. He is also active in the San Juan Capistrano Mission Preservation Foundation and serves on the Board
of Regents of both Santa Clara University and Catholic Charities.
Michael was married for 48 years, his wife Arlene having gone on to the Lord in 2010. He has four children and ten grandchildren. Michael is a member of the Knights of Malta and is an Extraordinary Minister of Holy Communion at his home parish, St. Edward the Confessor in Dana Point, CA.
William M. Murray, FACHE
Immediate Past President and CEO of Sisters of Charity of Leavenworth Health System
For over 35 years, Bill Murray has served in various leadership positions in the health care industry, with senior level experience in faith-based, not-for-profit health systems, for-profit health care companies and public hospitals.
Bill holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Political Theory from Georgetown University and an MBA in Finance and Heath Care Administration from Cornell University. He has served on various boards and committees of the American Hospital Association (AHA) and the and the Catholic Health Association (CHA), and was named the winner of the AHA’s “Turnaround of the Year—Large Category” (1992) Award and the CHA’s “Sister Concilia Moran Award for Visionary Leadership” (2011).
While leading the Sisters of Charity of Leavenworth Health System, Bill collaborated with four other Catholic Health Systems and instituted a Ministry Leadership Formation Program for Senior Leaders resulting in a greater understanding of Catholic Social Teaching and a richer appreciation for the role of spirituality in leadership.
Joseph M. Patrnchak
Chief Human Resources Officer
Cleveland, OH. Clinic
Joseph Patrnchak joined the Cleveland Clinic in December 2007 as the Chief Human Resources Officer of the Cleveland Clinic Health System. Joe holds an MS in Human Resources Management and Organizational Development from American University in Washington, DC, and a BA in Sociology from Northwestern University in Evanston, Ill.
While at Northwestern, Joe played linebacker on the football team with his identical twin brother. He also served as the President of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes on campus, and was a member of the All Big Ten Academic Team.
Joe is a member of St. John the Evangelist parish and serves on the advisory for the Oblates of the Virgin Mary. He also serves on the Board of Directors for Northeastern University, Junior Achievement, Tenacity Inc., St. Clements Eucharistic Shrine, and Inner City Tennis Clinics (ICTC).
Phillip Ramos, Jr.
Founder and Owner of Philatron Wire & Cable
Los Angeles, CA.
Phillip Ramos is an executive, inventor and entrpreneur from the Los Angeles area who founded and pioneered Philatron Wire and Cable, which over 27 years has grown into the largest electrical wire and cable manufacturer in Southern California.
Ramos obtained a liberal arts degree from East Los Angeles College and a degree in Business Administration from Cal State Los Angeles. After a tour of duty with the U.S. Navy, he entered the wire and cable industry as Division General Manager for Teledyne Western Wire & Cable, followed by a two year run as Executive Vice-President & General Manager of Century Wire & Cable. This experience in the wire industry led him to found his own company, Philatron, in 1974, which he grew from nothing to become the largest wire and cable manufacturer in southern California.
Ramos has won several regional awards and serves or has served on the boards of many charitable organizations, including Goodwill Industries, Catholic Charities of Orange County, Providence Speech & Hearing Center for Needy Children, Chairman of the Liturgy for the Orange County chapter of Legatus, the Loyola Institute for Spirituality, San Antonio Church Pastoral Council, Magis Institute of Reason & Faith and the Orange County Business Ethics Conference, where he is a panelist.
Phillip and his wife Eloise have been married for 45 years and have three children.
CEO of Stolz and Comapny
Midland, San Antonio, Amarillo, TX
Mark A. Stoltz is the CEO and majority partner of Stoltz and Company, Ltd, an insurance brokerage firm that provides innovative risk management and risk financing solutions, with offices throughout Texas. He has been in the insurance industry for over 25 years and started his current firm in 1990. Mr. Stoltz holds the Certified Insurance Counselor (CIC) and Certified Workers’ Compensation Advisor (CWCA) designations. He is also a member of Sitkins International, an international organization of select privately-held insurance brokers.
In addition to his corporate management obligations, Mr. Stoltz heads Stoltz and Company’s commercial division, where the firm specializes in the energy industry and alternative risk programs. He has presented public seminars concerning well control, workers’ compensation, oil operator liability and oil field risk management strategies as well as alternative risk solutions. He periodically serves on the advisory boards of insurance carriers Texas and has also served as chairman of the national agents advisory board for The St. Paul companies.
Mr. Stoltz earned a B.A. degree in Psychology from Texas Tech University. A great believer in education, he currently sits on the board of Our Lady of the Lake University in San Antonio, Texas.
Global Strategic Recruiting Manager of Plastipak Holdings
Gerry Vendittelli is originally from Dearborn, MI. He attended graduated from Divine Child and went on to get a BA in business from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. Gerry joined Plastipak Holdings in September 2004 as Associate Development Strategic Recruiting Specialist and is currently Plastipak's Global Strategic Recruiting Manager.
Gerry and his wife have been members of Our Lady of Good Counsel Parish in Plymouth Mi. for 28 years and are the proud parents of two daughters.
Michael C. Winn
Chairman of Hollister, Inc (retired)
A Chicago native, Michael Winn attended St. Ignatius Preperatory School in Chicago before going on to attain a B.S. degree from Loyola University in 1958. He also attained a Jurisdoctor degree from De Paul University's College of Law School in Chicago in 1964.
After brief stints at various companies, Michael was hired by Hollister Inc., a Boston based medical supplier that is noted for being 100% employee owned. He rose through the ranks to become President and CEO of the company, a position he held for 24 years until his retirement in 2001. He remains Chairman of Hollister's Board of Trustees.
Mike is currently active on the boards of many charitable organizations, including the Big Shoulders Foundation and the Chelbourne Foundation, and is also a member of Legatus. He also serves on the board of Lexington College and the Waterstone Group, among others.
Michael and his wife Jacqueline have been married for 52 years. They have eight children and 54 grandchildren and worship at St. Mary parish in Lake Forest, Ill.