We are blessed by the time, talent, and wisdom dedicated by our staff members. Our doors are always open, and we are here to support, help, and guide our Catholic Trojan Family.
About Abbie Brucelo
Abigail, fondly known as Abbie, oversees the marketing and communications strategy for USC Caruso Catholic Center and Our Savior Parish. Prior to joining the team, Abbie has led marketing efforts in her previous roles at Radio Disney, Disney ABC Television Group, and various creative marketing agencies. Her passion to engage the Body of Christ in building meaningful, authentic relationships has brought her to serve as a core team leader and retreats co-chair for the young adult ministry at her home parish, St. Monica Catholic Church in Santa Monica. She also loves to worship the Lord through music, ministering with the Sunday 5:30 p.m. contemporary choir. She honors the responsibility to steward verbal and visual language. Abbie holds a master's degree from Columbia University and a bachelor's degree in English from UCLA.
About Jamie Cappetta
Jamie is the president of Our Savior Parish and USC Caruso Catholic Center. With a track record for building and serving Catholic communities in the northeast, while improving organizational infrastructures and operational efficiencies, Jamie most recently spent eight years with Saint Thomas More, The Catholic Chapel and Center at Yale University. On staff at Yale from 2006-2014, he served in the roles of development director, program director, and assistant chaplain, assisting students, exploring partnerships, and helping to lead fundraising, public relations, and marketing efforts. Since 2009, Jamie also serves as a consultant for Petrus Development, which seeks to empower organizations to create and sustain fund development programs, with a focus on Catholic ministry in higher education. Prior to 2006, Jamie's roles included director of development and campus minister for Catholic Newman Center at University of Massachusetts and campus minister at Boston College High School and South Boston Catholic Youth Ministry. Jamie graduated with a B.A. in speech communication from the University of Richmond and completed his M.A. in ministry from Saint John’s Seminary in Boston, as well as a master’s degree in development and philanthropy from St. Mary’s University in Minnesota. "I am thrilled to be part of the Catholic Trojan family and bring my passion and skills to USC to help guide the center and parish to a higher place.”
USC President C. L. Max Nikias wrote, “Fostering a rich religious environment on campus should be a goal of every university, and in light of his track record at Yale, I know Jamie Cappetta will be a huge asset to the USC Caruso Catholic Center and Our Savior Parish.”
About Yvette Cardona
Yvette is the business manager for Our Savior Parish and USC Caruso Catholic Center. She has over twenty-five years of experience working in the private sector as well as with several parishes within the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. Her work ethic along with communications skills have enabled her to act as liaison between different personalities within the work force as well as with her customer base. Longevity in her career has always been an integral part of her business professionalism. Establishing a good working relationship has provided growth and advancement; she is self-motivated, responsible, and works well within a team setting. Her family and her spiritual growth are an essential part of her daily life. She has served as a Eucharistic Minister at her home parish, managed the Bingo & Parish Festival, and served as the PTO president while her children attended elementary school.
About Nina Gallegos
Nina is our new marketing associate and is the newest full-time member of our staff. She has already made contributions to the team through her internship with the CC and has managed social media since 2015. She is a newly minted grad from USC, (Class of 2017), and she earned her BA degree in public relations with a minor in business finance.
Fun facts: Nina's first concert was Aaron Carter, but her favorite concert was the Jonas brothers. She is obsessed with pizza, but she prefers cheese pizza because she is vegan (sometimes). Since Batman's name means he is afraid of bats, using that same logic, Nina’s superhero name would be Fish Woman.
She will be a great resource to the marketing team and all of the CC, and will help to advance our mission spreading the best news of God’s love to our community here at USC.
About Anthony Heim
Anthony serves as the Associate Director of Campus Ministry at Our Savior Parish and USC Caruso Catholic Center, where he oversees Community Life & Culture. His areas of interest include art, music, the Lakers, USC sports, and his daughter’s dance recitals. Anthony received his master of arts in theology, with an emphasis in religion and the arts, from the Dominican School of Philosophy and Theology. Anthony is also a member of the Graduate Theological Union, Berkeley CA. He previously studied philosophy at the University of San Diego and art at San Diego State University, where he received his BA, with an emphasis in painting and printmaking.
About Kathleen Hurtt
Kathleen strives to engage people in Catholic life at USC and ensure the Catholic Center has the funding necessary to live out its mission. Raised in a Roman Catholic family and a product of both Catholic primary and secondary education, Kathleen sees her work as truly a vocation. Kathleen joined the Catholic Center from the Diocese of San Bernardino where she spent ten years raising over $75 million through endowment gifts, major gifts, annual appeals, memberships, events, and grant writing. Most rewarding for her during this time was the relationships she established with donors while drawing attention to the needs of the Diocese and the profound impact they could make in working together. Prior to her time in San Bernardino, Kathleen also held positions at institutions of higher education including Pepperdine University, Cal Poly Pomona, and our very own USC. Education and giving back are important to Kathleen, made evident in the philanthropic fundraising certifications she has received from both La Sierra University and the Nonprofit Fundraising Academy. She is also a trained liturgical minister and speaks regularly on the topics of stewardship, mercy, spirituality of giving, and annual giving best practices. Accompanying Kathleen on her move back to Los Angeles in March of 2016 are her husband, their two children, and their chocolate lab.
About Rudy Lowe
Mr. Lowe is our manager of operations and hospitality services. Rudy has traveled the globe performing in some of the most respected theaters in the world. Mr. Lowe attended Ithaca College in New York, and the prestigious Johnson and Wales College. He later became an international concierge where his stellar reputation for his refined services preceded him. In his most recent role as artist entrance lead concierge at the iconic Hollywood Bowl, Mr. Lowe gained multiple accolades, fond respect, and the favor of all who are lucky to come in contact with him. Originally from the east coast he fell in love with SoCal life in all its artistic, cultural, and rich American history. He is so privileged to be a part of the team here at Our Savior Parish and USC Caruso Catholic Center.
About Andrew Mountin
Andrew Mountin oversees the liturgy and music ministry programs for Our Savior Parish and USC Caruso Catholic Center. Over the last decade, Andrew has worked in parish, high school, and university settings as a lay minister and educator. Andrew received his BA and MA in History from Marquette University before going on to complete an MA in Liturgical Music from Saint John's School of Theology and Seminary in Collegeville, MN. As a musician, Andrew has an appreciation for all forms of sacred music, but a special love for gospel and world music.
With a deep love for mentoring college students in ministry, music, and spirituality, Andrew feels honored to be a member of the team here at the Catholic Center. Hailing from Milwaukee, WI, he feels excited about living and working in the City of Angels.
About Xochitl Nisbet
Xochitl is tasked with the data management of the USC Caruso Catholic Center. She has been working in non-profit database administration for over 16 years and comes with an expertise in many essential software programs. She is immersed in the St. Monica Catholic parish as a member of the Cornerstone Women’s Group and as an advocate for the St. Monica Catholic schools. She is currently the co-vice president of fundraising on the PTC at St. Monica Catholic Elementary School where two of her children attend middle school. She has a great affection for education and is currently on the dean’s honor list at Santa Monica College where she is involved in the music and theater programs while she remains up to date with current trends and skills in technology. She is thrilled for the opportunity to combine her passions for faith, education, and technology in her career here. Xochitl is a native to West Los Angeles where she attended Marymount Junior and High schools. She continues to reside there with her children and their exuberant 200-lb. St. Bernard puppy, Romeo. Her name is pronounced “So-Chee” and it means “flower” in Nathuatl, which is the Aztec Indian language.
About Amanda Flores
Amanda is the wedding coordinator for the USC Caruso Catholic Center and Our Savior Parish. She is responsible for helping the couples plan their ceremony and coordinates the day of details. Prior to joining the staff as the wedding coordinator, Amanda has served as a cantor at numerous weddings and was in the 10:30am choir for over four years. In addition, she was married at Our Savior in December 2017 and coordinated eight weddings at Our Savior before her own. Amanda’s favorite part working as the wedding coordinator is the fact that she gets to work in tandem with her dad, Deacon Paul Pesqueira.
Amanda also works full-time as the manager of development and event programs for Step Up, a national mentorship nonprofit. Step Up creates and implements impactful after-school programs and propels girls living or going to school in under-resourced communities to fulfill their potential by empowering them to become confident, college-bound, career-focused, and ready to join the next generation of professional women. In this role, Amanda is responsible for the planning and successful execution of all Step Up events in Los Angeles. Amanda holds a bachelors degree from Loyola Marymount University in communication studies and earned her masters degree from USC’s Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism in communication management.
About Dcn. Paul Pesqueira
Paul Pesqueira was ordained to the permanent Diaconate for the Archdiocese of Los Angeles in June of 2009. Paul’s first assignment was at St. Mariana de Paredes in the city of Pico Rivera. Paul’s current assignment is to Our Savior Parish and USC Caruso Catholic Center where he oversees the liturgy and sacramental preparation programs. Paul has been a stational deacon for the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels for the last six years serving both Cardinal Roger Mahoney and Archbishop Jose Gomez. Paul is also a full time campus minister for the USC Caruso Catholic Center. Paul worked at United Parcel Service for 30 years before retiring in July of 2014. Paul has been married to his wife Michelle for 29 years and currently lives in the city of Pico Rivera with their four daughters Amanda, Melanie, Natalie, and Danielle.
About Rose Ramirez
Rose assists with the advancement department and administrative duties for Our Savior Parish and USC Caruso Catholic Center. Prior to joining the team, she worked in the financial industry in the areas of human resources and community relations at Mutual Savings and Wesco Financial in Pasadena. She has years of experience fundraising for non-profit companies and extensive experience in event planning. She has a wonderful husband and four grown children with the youngest being a senior in college. She feels it is a blessing to work with such dedicated and passionate people. She loves seeing the students grow in their faith and build a foundation here with Jesus Christ.
About Brian Russell
Brian oversees the Endowment Campaign for USC Caruso Catholic Center and Our Savior Parish. Prior to joining the team, he worked as the Director of Development and Stewardship at St. Monica Catholic Community where he spent over five years to lead the team to the completion of a $28 million capital campaign. He collaborated with Holy Cross Mission Center at Notre Dame to raise over half a million dollars to complete the construction of a new church and child and maternal health clinic in Dandora, Kenya. His work with the Archdiocese of Los Angeles helped to launch a diocese wide stewardship strategy for offertory enhancement.
Brian went through the RCIA program to join the Catholic faith in 2011 and found a deeper love for Christ and passion to do God’s work. He received a B.A. in Communication from California State University San Marcos in 2002 and is a member of the Association of Fundraising Professionals Greater Los Angeles Chapter. Brian is from San Pedro, California and enjoys public speaking, golf, and spending time his wife and child.
About Rosie Chinea Shawver, MDiv
Rosie Chinea Shawver, a native of Southern California, is the Director of Campus Ministry at the USC Caruso Catholic Center. She has worked at USC since September 2012. Rosie has her B.A. in psychology and a minor in health care and social issues from UC San Diego. After finishing her degree at UC San Diego, Rosie volunteered at Annunciation House, a home for immigrants in El Paso, Texas. This experience taught Rosie that to work in the Catholic Church she needed to pursue a degree in theology. She went to the Jesuit School of Theology in Berkeley, California, where she earned a masters degree in divinity. Rosie then moved to Albuquerque, New Mexico, where she was the director of campus ministry at the University of New Mexico for four years and then at Catholic Charities in the Archdiocese of Santa Fe where she was the parish and faith community outreach liaison.
Rosie is thrilled to be working in campus ministry at USC. She has one daughter, Sofia Rose, and a wonderful, supportive husband, Mike, who is a theology teacher and campus minister at Loyola High School in Los Angeles, CA.
About Fr. Richard Sunwoo
Fr. Richard Sunwoo was ordained in May 2009 for the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. He hails from the lovely port city of San Pedro, California and attended local Catholic schools. Fr. Richard graduated from St. John’s Seminary College in Camarillo, California studying Philosophy and English. After graduation, he traveled throughout Europe and spent a year in South Korea teaching English. After returning to US, Fr. Richard taught English at St. Bernard’s High School and Bishop Montgomery High School before returning to the seminary to complete his formation towards priesthood. He has served as the parochial vicar at St. Lawrence Martyr Catholic Church in Redondo Beach and recently completed his last assignment at St. Monica’s Catholic Church in Santa Monica, California. Fr. Richard loves working with youth and young adults and is excited about campus ministry at USC to further the great Catholic Trojan tradition! Fight On!
About Tricia Tembreull
Tricia Tembreull is a California girl with a boundless passion for life. After two decades of ministering to teens and youth ministers as a trainer, ministry mentor, and speaker through the Life Teen movement, Tricia has chosen to turn her attention to serve college adults as campus minister at USC Caruso Catholic Center. Her zeal for scripture and Saint John Paul II’s "Theology of the Body" helps creates a strong foundation for her spirituality and sacramental faith. As a devotions writer and retreat host for Blessed Is She, she continues to develop her artistry for writing and speaking about her beloved Catholic faith. She loves adventure and seeks it everywhere she goes. As an avid foodie, she enjoys testing new recipes out on friends and family, gathering them around the table to encounter Christ in one another, and draw them to the satisfying unity we crave in the Eucharist.
About Fr. Ken Templin, SM
Fr. Ken was born and raised in Cleveland, Ohio. He met the Marianist priests and brothers during high school and felt called to join them. He made first vows in 1959 and final vows in 1963. He was a high school teacher, administrator, and counselor for several years and then went to the seminary. He was ordained a priest in 1979 and continued serving in high schools until 1992. He then began to work in college campus ministry in Michigan, Ohio, and Honolulu. He came to L.A. two years ago and has helped at Our Savior during that time. He will be working with grad students this year and is excited to be a part of the team. He is an easy, laid-back person with lots of positive energy. He loves to do gardening and being outdoors.
About Fr. Greg Vance, S.J.
Fr. Greg Vance is a Jesuit priest who comes to the CCC from Fairbanks, Alaska where he has worked for the last two years with the Catholic Schools of Fairbanks. He has significant experience in the Jesuit Secondary School system having worked in faculty and administrations of Jesuit High Schools in Seattle, Spokane, and Tacoma, Washington; Missoula, Montana and Portland, Oregon. He has even worked with a group of parents trying to begin a Jesuit High School in Auckland, New Zealand.
Fr. Greg is the oldest of three. He has a brother who is a struggling screenwriter and a sister who is a forensic anthropologist for the Oregon State Police. His intellectual interests include the intersection between mythology and spirituality (he is a passionate and devoted fan of the works of J.R.R. Tolkien) and the portrayal of spirituality, the church, and the priesthood in popular culture and media. He has degrees in English and philosophy from Gonzaga University, theology from Weston Jesuit School of Theology in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and educational leadership from the University of Montana. He is very excited to be part of the Catholic Trojan family and get to know the students, faculty, staff, and coaches of USC! He brings to this ministry broad experience in the spirituality of the Jesuits, particularly through the tradition of “discernment of spirits” developed by their founder, Saint Ignatius of Loyola. Pray on!
About Sr. Jenny Zimmerman, SND
Sr. Jenny Zimmerman is a Sister of Notre Dame (SND) from Toledo, Ohio. She received her undergraduate degree in exercise science/athletic training from the University of Toledo in 2002. Sr. Jenny entered the Sisters of Notre Dame in 2004 but never intended to stay (there’s much more to that story – ask her about it sometime!). She received her masters of theology from Lourdes University and professed her final vows as a SND in 2013. After five years of ministry as a campus minister, theology teacher, and strength and conditioning coach for Notre Dame Academy, Sr. Jenny moved to Long Beach, CA, to work with young adults on vocational discernment, retreats, and service opportunities. Sr. Jenny has a self-proclaimed sports “addiction” and loves her teams from Cleveland and Ohio State! She loves spending time with her family, friends, and religious sisters – laughing, enjoying good food, and being outside in the Southern California sun! Sr. Jenny officially started on July 11.
Fellowship Of Catholic University students (FOCUS)
About Brianne Elizabeth Sanford
About Patrick Tavelli
I was born in Boise, Idaho to a family of practicing Catholics. With four older siblings all at least 10 years older than me, I had plenty of good role models to look up to throughout my youth, but I still failed to develop a good grounding in my Catholic faith. When I transitioned into college at Santa Clara University I found myself going through the motions of my faith without having a relationship with Christ. I began slipping away from my faith and giving up on beliefs I had been convicted of since childhood. Thankfully, through the witness of my best friend and my parents, I experienced a conversion back to the truth, goodness, and beauty of the Catholic church. I began to discover the person of Jesus in prayer and to develop a relationship with Him that would change my life. After graduating from Santa Clara in 2016, believing that God was calling me into medicine, I moved home to spend two years bolstering my experience in that field. Ultimately, through several national conferences, prayer, and a mission trip to Denver with Christ in the City, Jesus called me to put my medical school plans on hold in order to spread His gospel on the college campus. I am so excited to be able to live out this call with FOCUS! My life has been transformed by Jesus, and I want nothing more than to bring this joy to others and introduce them to the life-changing message of the gospel. I am looking forward to being amazed by the wonderful opportunities to spread the gospel, joy, and faith at USC together with the Caruso Catholic Center community and staff.