News: Deacon Dobelmann named executive director of St. Albert Schools

April 2, 2019

Deacon Vernon Dobelmann

Deacon Vernon Dobelmann has been named the executive director of a newly established leadership model at Saint Albert Catholic Schools in Council Bluffs, effective June 23, 2019.

The executive director position was newly created following a diocesan schools strategic planning initiative and subsequent, more focused strategic planning process specifically for Saint Albert Catholic Schools.

Meitler consultants guided a steering committee over the past year through a planning process that will be followed up with an implementation process with goals and accountability measures built in. The final report will be shared with the new executive director and leadership team in July, 2019.

Leading the school in his new position, Deacon Dobelmann will be responsible for institutional advancement, strategic plan development and promoting the fundamental values of a Catholic school. He holds a bachelor's degree in Sociology & Criminal Justice from Truman State University. He attended Paul VI Pontifical Institute for Theology and Pastoral Studies and was ordained a deacon in June, 1999. His experience includes teaching theology and serving as the Varsity Basketball coach at Valle Catholic High School in Ste. Genevieve, Mo. and serving as an Interim Principal at Assumption Parish in O'Fallon, Mo. and Superintendent of Catholic Schools in the Diocese of Cheyenne, Wyoming.

"I was impressed by Deacon Dobelmann's organization, ideas for improvement and overall experience in leading educational institutions," said Bishop Richard Pates.

"Deacon Dobelmann brings a full range of experience in Catholic education. He will bring strong Catholic identity to St. Albert, and inspire the staff to work on continuous improvement to pursue academic excellence and Catholic formation." Said Dr. Tracy Bonday.

Pat Ryan, who served on the search committee, said, "Deacon Vernon Dobelmann has the passion and experience to lead St. Albert in a new direction.  He has dedicated his life to Catholic education and the Catholic Church.  His deep-rooted faith will serve as a shining example to all of the St. Albert community as we continue to fulfill our mission of providing high quality Catholic education."   

Deacon Dobelmann said he is excited to come to Council Bluffs.

"Twenty years of ordained ministry have led to this moment in time. Each step along the way has prepared me to be at St. Albert Catholic Schools for this unique transition at a wonderful school with a rich history. My leadership experience in both elementary and secondary education makes me feel excited for this particular endeavor. I am prepared and ready to lead this noble institution which serves the local community from 'cradle to college.'

"Having a strong and vibrant Catholic identity is essential for St. Albert's.  We can never lose focus that everything we do is centered on Jesus Christ and the Good News of Salvation," he said.

"I will celebrate my 20th anniversary as a deacon in June. The words I heard during the ordination rite still resonate within me after all these years. I was ordained in St. Louis.  Archbishop Rigali handed me the Book of the Gospels and said, 'Receive the Gospel of Christ whose herald you now are. Believe what you read. Teach what you believe. Practice what you teach.' That responsibility never subsides. When parents entrust their children with us in a Catholic school, they have a right to expect that we will teach the faith fully, articulate hope, and model love," he said.

"A new direction has been set forth for St. Albert's.  I will do my utmost to implement the strategic plan in cooperation and collaboration with everyone involved.  Working together will enable us to put St. Albert's on solid ground for decades to come," said Deacon Dobelmann. "My wife and I both grew up on farms outside the St. Louis area. We are Midwest folks and are thrilled to be coming home."