BISHOP BARAGA ASSOCIATION ADVISORY BOARD

Very Rev. Timothy Ferguson: Chaplain

Father Tim Ferguson serves as priest for St. Joseph and St. Patrick of Escanaba, MI. He was ordained to the priesthood in 2015 and served for a few months at St. Peter Cathedral in Marquette before serving at  Marygrove Retreat Center in Garden, MI. He was born and raised in Saginaw, MI, and entered the seminary right out of high school, in 1985. After seven years of seminary formation, he left and drifted through different jobs at a retreat center, in restaurants, a publishing company, and a gold mining company before settling in as a parish secretary at St. Dominic’s Parish in San Francisco. During his time of discernment between leaving the seminary and returning, he came to know about Bishop Baraga, and read about his heroic exploits, his strong devotion to the faith and to God’s people, and his tenacity. 

James A. Surrell, M.D.: President

Dr. James Surrell has been working with the Bishop Baraga Sainthood efforts in the Diocese of Marquette with documentation sent to the Vatican for review. He also gives PowerPoint presentations regarding the history of the many significant contributions made by Bishop Baraga throughout the great Upper Peninsula of Michigan. Dr. Surrell is a board-certified colorectal surgeon and holds fellowship status in both the American Society of Colon and Rectal Surgeons and the American College of Surgeons.  In addition to his best selling SOS (Stop Only Sugar) Diet book, Dr. Surrell has authored many articles in various medical journals. He recently published his latest book, The ABC’s For Success In All We Do.

Deacon John P. Vidmar, PhD: Vice President

Dr. John Vidmar is the permanent deacon at the Slovenian Catholic Mission in Lemont, IL, which is part of the Archdiocese of Chicago. He is the treasurer for a diaconal ministry, Hope’s On The Way, which serves as second responders to natural disasters and supports various ministries in the Chicago Archdiocese. He has also lectured in Homilitecs in the Diaconate Formation program and serves as a facilitator in the Emmaus program, a mentoring program for newly ordained deacons. He sits on the board for Villa St. Benedict, a senior housing complex in Lisle, IL, which is part of the Benedictine Health Systems headquartered in Duluth, MN.  He serves as the Honorary Consul for Slovenia for Illinois. He is a social scientist by training and serves as the Chairman for the US Ipsos Public Affairs, a division which conducts policy research using survey methods for the federal government and international agencies as well as Thomson Reuters News Service. Prior to Ipsos, Dr. Vidmar was on the staff at the Survey Research Laboratory at the University of Illinois and was a lecturer in various academic departments.  He has been involved in the Baraga Canonization Cause since he was a teenager growing up in the Slovenian community of Cleveland, OH. He was named Baraga Man of the Year in 2013.

             Jerry Parodo

Jerry Parodo resides in Manawa, Wisconsin with his wife, Anita. He has four children. Jerry is retired from the Television and Telecommunication industry where he worked for many years. He is a member of the Society of Broadcast Engineers. Jerry is a Navy Veteran with 7 years of service. Jerry is a lifetime member of the Bishop Baraga Association and actively promotes Venerable Bishop Baraga’s cause for canonization.

          Lore Ann Parent

Lore Ann Parent was born and raised in Marquette, MI. She majored in Business/Restaurant Management while attending Northern Michigan University. After graduation Lore Ann moved to Seattle, Washington and later to Alaska to work in the entertainment industry. In 1985, Lore Ann returned to the Marquette area to pursue her career and to help care for her family, as her father had recently been diagnosed with cancer.

She has held numerous chair positions for local organizations and has been instrumental in fundraising for countless events. Besides her business work, she studied and developed talents in the restorative art field, acquiring 26 years of experience restoring several hundreds of ceramic, metal, and marble pieces. She also had the wonderful opportunity of restoring “The Stations of the Cross” in the Holy Cross Cemetery, taking 521 hours for completion. She is an illustrator, oil painter, and photographer.

Mary Ann Biscorner-Dick

Mary Ann is the mother of three wonderful children, grandmother of four, and wife to husband, Marvin Dick. She was born and raised in the Detroit area, attending Catholic schools her entire life and was a teen representative to Cardinal Dearden’s 1967-68 Synod. Having lived the biggest part of her life in Monroe County, she retired from Monroe County Community College, working as a Workforce Development Specialist.

After retirement, the couple moved to Sugar Island, near Sault Sainte Marie, where they became active in the community and mission church, Sacred Heart. Mary serves as Eucharist Minister, Lector, Social Director, and on the Parish Council. It was through her involvement at Sacred Heart that drew her to work on the Holy Angels Restoration Project, one of the few remaining missions built by Bishop Baraga. Delving into the local church history as well as tracing Bishop Baraga’s assignments throughout Michigan, Mary found that her Catholic faith has taken on another dimension. It is her hope that the work on Holy Angels Church will bring to the forefront the impact and sacrifice that Bishop Baraga made for the community.

Sandy Jurkovich

Sandy Jurkovich is a member of St. Peter Cathedral in Marquette. She and her husband, Bob, came to Marquette in 1976 to finish their education at Northern Michigan University and never left! They have three children, Fr. Robb Jurkovich, Anne (Jurkovich) & Adam Lund, and Jay and Breanna (Cretens) Jurkovich. They also have five grandchildren. Sandy taught elementary school for 25 years and has been retired for five. She is very active with the Women Caring and Serving/Altar Society women’s group at St. Peter as well as the Hospitality Committee which her husband, Bob, heads. Bob and Sandy have been long-time members of the Bishop Baraga Association and Sandy has served on the Bishop Baraga Education Center committee since its inception. She is looking forward to serving on the Bishop Baraga Advisory Board as we all pray for his cause to sainthood.

                         Danny J. Garceau, Waabijiizi Ma’iingan (He is a Grey Wolf)

New to the Advisory Board is Danny Garceau! Danny is Anishinabe (Ojibwe) and his ancestors include members of several tribes of the Lake Superior Chippewa. Bishop Baraga married his great grandfather Francois Lamoureux to Maria Osawamik Katchitchi Gadjidji and baptized their children. Francois, along with his future son-in-law Hilaire (Ely) Generux, helped build the Catholic Church on Madeline Island for Bishop Baraga. Danny lives in Ishpeming, part of the homeland of his ancestors, with his wife Diane and grandson Logan (Nish)/Misajiidamoo. 
 
Danny is a lifetime member of the Society of American Indian Government Employees (SAIGE) and currently serves as a Director on the SAIGE Board and as the Director of the SAIGE Warrior Society. Danny has served on the SAIGE board since 2007, including two terms as the Chair from 2008 to 2012. In 2007 he retired at the rank of Sergeant Major (SGM) from the United States Army and Army National Guard with 30 years of active duty. His last duty assignment was as the Michigan Army National Guard Recruiting Command Sergeant Major.
 

                                          H. John Vincent (Garceau)

New to the Advisory Board is H. John Vincent! John was born in Ontonagon, Michigan, left the U.P. for years, and then returned to attend school an Ishpeming and graduate from Ishpeming High School. John has been married for 45 years, has four grown children, and nine grandchildren (one in heaven). After graduation John joined the US Coast Guard and was stationed at Air Station Traverse City as an aviation machinist mate, and was an air rescue crewman aboard the helicopters and fixed wing aircraft. Upon leaving the Coast Guard, John attended Palmer Chiropractic College and practiced as a chiropractic physician for 22 years in Wisconsin. John was ordained a deacon in the Diocese of Green Bay in 2005, and began ministering as a full time hospital chaplain in Manitowoc, Wisconsin. John currently is ministering part time in the Green Bay area as a hospice chaplain while still living in Manitowoc with his wife, Arlene. John enjoys reading, praying, hiking/walking, kayaking and biking, anything with the family, hanging out with his brother, riding his Harley, and anything outdoors. John feels a spiritual connection with Bishop Baraga and is inspired by Bishop Baraga’s commitment, zeal in spreading God’s word and love, and compassion for the Native People and early settlers of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. John has a connection with Bishop Baraga in that John has ancestors that helped build the first Catholic Church on Madeline Island, and had ancestors that were married and baptized by Bishop Baraga.

                                               Curtis Chambers


New to the Advisory Board is Curtis Chambers! Mr. Chambers lives in Cheboygan, Michigan with his wife, Jane. Together they have three sons, Justin, Levi and Jeremy. Mr. Chambers is a retired harbormaster, a St. Mary/St. Charles parishioner, and an active outdoorsman. For Mr. Chambers, an interest in Venerable Bishop Frederic Baraga heightened in 2002. While doing tribal research as chairman of the Burt Lake Band of Ottawa and Chippewa Indians, Mr. Chambers became aware of the sacrifices that Bishop Baraga made for the Native Americans of the Great Lakes Region. Deeply influenced by Bishop Baraga’s work, Mr. Chambers undertakes annual snowshoe pilgrimages. Traveling distances of 125-150 miles in subzero temperatures, he averages 20 miles a day. His relationship with God and with Bishop Baraga inspired his first pilgrimage and every one since.

Very Rev. Timothy Ferguson: Chaplain

Father Tim Ferguson serves as priest for St. Joseph and St. Patrick of Escanaba, MI. He was ordained to the priesthood in 2015 and served for a few months at St. Peter Cathedral in Marquette before serving at  Marygrove Retreat Center in Garden, MI. He was born and raised in Saginaw, Michigan, and entered the seminary right out of high school, in 1985. After seven years of seminary formation, I left, and drifted through a couple of different jobs at a retreat center, in restaurants, a publishing company, and a gold mining company before settling in as a parish secretary at St. Dominic’s Parish in San Francisco. During his time of discernment between leaving the seminary and returning, he came to know about Bishop Baraga, and read about his heroic exploits, his strong devotion to the faith and to God’s people, and his tenacity. 

 

James A Surrell, M.D.: President

Dr. James Surrell has been working with the Diocese of Marquette with regard to the Bishop Baraga Sainthood efforts with documentation sent to the Vatican for review. He also gives PowerPoint presentations regarding the history of the many significant contributions made by Bishop Baraga throughout the great Upper Peninsula of Michigan. Dr. Surrell is a board-certified colorectal surgeon and holds fellowship status in both the American Society of Colon and Rectal Surgeons and the American College of Surgeons.  In addition to his best selling SOS (Stop Only Sugar) Diet book, Dr. Surrell has authored many articles in various medical journals. He recently published his latest book, The ABC’s For Success In All We Do.

Deacon John P. Vidmar, PhD: Vice President

Dr. Vidmar is the permanent deacon at the Slovenian Catholic Mission in Lemont, IL which is part of the Archdiocese of Chicago.  He is the treasurer for a diaconal ministry, Hopes On The Way which has served as second responders to natural disasters and it supports various ministries in the Chicago Archdiocese. He has also lectured in Homilitecs in the Diaconate Formation program and serves as a facilitator in the Emmaus program which is a mentoring program for newly ordained deacons. He sits on the board for Villa St. Benedict, a senior housing complex in Lisle, IL which is part of the Benedictine Health Systems headquartered in Duluth, MN.  He serves as the Honorary Consul for Slovenia for Illinois. He is a social scientist by training and serves as the Chairman for the US Ipsos Public Affairs, a division which conducts policy research using survey methods for the federal government and international agencies as well as Thomson Reuters News Service. Prior to Ipsos, Dr. Vidmar was on the staff at the Survey Research Laboratory at the University of Illinois and was a lecturer in various academic departments.  He has been involved in the Baraga Canonization Cause since he was a teenager growing up in the Slovenian community of Cleveland, Ohio. He was named Baraga Man of the Year in 2013.

Jerry Parodo

Jerry Parodo resides in Manawa, Wisconsin with his wife Anita. He has four children.  Jerry is retired from the Television and Telecommunication industry where he worked for many years. He is a member of the Society of Broadcast Engineers.  Jerry is a Navy Veteran with 7 years of service. Jerry is a lifetime member of the Bishop Baraga Association and actively promotes Venerable Bishop Baraga’s cause for canonization.

Lore Ann Parent

Lore Ann Parent was born and raised in Marquette, MI.  She majored in Business Management/ Restaurant while attended Northern Michigan University.  After graduation Lore Ann moved to Seattle, Washington and later to Alaska to work in the entertainment industry.  In 1985, Lore Ann returned to the Marquette area to pursue her career and to help care for her family as her father had recently been diagnosed with cancer.

She has held numerous chair positions for local organizations and has been instrumental in fundraising for countless events.  Besides her business work, she studied and developed talents in the restorative art field acquiring 26 years of experience restoring several hundreds of ceramic, metal and marble pieces.  She also had the wonderful opportunity of restoring “The Stations of the Cross” in the Holy Cross Cemetery that took 521 hours to complete.  She is an illustrator, oil painter, and photographer.

Mary Ann Biscorner-Dick

Mary Ann is the mother of three wonderful children, grandmother of four, and wife to husband, Marvin Dick.  She was born and raised in the Detroit area, attending Catholic schools her entire life including teen representative to Cardinal Dearden’s 1967-68 Synod.  Having lived the biggest part of her life in Monroe County, she retired from Monroe County Community College, working as a Workforce Development Specialist.

After retirement, the couple moved to Sugar Island, near Sault Sainte Marie, where they became active in the community and mission church, Sacred Heart.  Mary serves as Eucharist Minister, Lector, Social Director, and on Parish Council.  It was through her involvement at Sacred Heart that drew her to work on the Holy Angels Restoration Project, one of the few remaining missions built by Bishop Baraga.  Delving into the local church history as well as tracing Bishop Baraga’s assignments throughout Michigan, Mary found that her Catholic faith has taken on another dimension.  It is her hope that the work on Holy Angels Church will bring to the forefront the impact and sacrifice that Bishop Baraga made for the community.

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Sandy Jurkovich

Sandy Jurkovich is a member of St. Peter Cathedral in Marquette. She and her husband, Bob, came to Marquette in 1976 to finish their education at Northern Michigan University and never left! They have three children, Fr. Robb Jurkovich, Anne (Jurkovich) & Adam Lund and Jay and Breanna (Cretens) Jurkovich. They also have five grandchildren. Sandy taught elementary school for 25 years and has been retired for five. She is very active with the Woman Caring and Serving/Altar Society woman’s group at St. Peter as well as the Hospitality Committee which her husband, Bob heads. Bob and Sandy have been long-time members of the Bishop Baraga Association and Sandy has served on the Bishop Baraga Education Center committee since its inception. She is looking forward to serving on the Bishop Baraga Advisory Board as we all pray for his cause to sainthood.

Danny J. Garceau, Waabijiizi Ma’iingan (He is a Grey Wolf)
New to the Advisory Board is Danny Garceau! Danny is Anishinabe (Ojibwe) and his ancestors include members of several tribes of the Lake Superior Chippewa. Bishop Baraga married his great grandfather Francois Lamoureux to Maria Osawamik Katchitchi Gadjidji and baptized their children. Francois along with his future son-in-law Hilaire (Ely) Generux helped build the Catholic Church on Madeline Island for Bishop Baraga. Danny is a lifetime member of the Society of American Indian Government Employees (SAIGE) and currently serves as a Director on the SAIGE Board and as the Director of the SAIGE Warrior Society. Danny has served on the SAIGE board since 2007 to include two terms as the Chair from 2008 to 2012. In 2007 he retired at the rank of Sergeant Major (SGM) from the United States Army and Army National Guard with 30 years of active duty. His last duty assignment was as the Michigan Army National Guard Recruiting Command Sergeant Major. SGM Garceau served three years as the Recruiting and Retention Area Command Sergeant Major Chair for Region IV representing all the Great Lakes States. SGM Garceau served on the Michigan Diversity Council for seven years as the Strength Maintenance Advisor and as the Native American Special Emphasis Program Manager. His formal education includes the University of Phoenix, Vincennes University and Northern Michigan University. His military education includes over a dozen schools and courses. He is an Honor Graduate of the Basic Leadership School and Distinguished Graduate of the Advanced Leadership School. In 2002 he graduated with honors from the United States Army Sergeant Major Academy at Fort Bliss, Texas. Danny lives in Ishpeming, part of the homeland of his ancestors, with his wife Diane and grandson Logan (Nish) / Misajiidamoo. He is an active member
of several organizations including; Commander of AMVETS Post 122, an editor on the Ishpeming Alumni Association Beacon Light, a Road Captain with the Patriot Guard Riders, Treasurer of the 107th Engineer Retired Officer Association, Lifetime Member of the Blackhorse Association /Blackhorse Cavalry Regiment Motorcycles,
Lifetime Member of the DAV, the American Legion, Michigan Bikers Helping Veterans and serves on the Honor Guard with the Wiikwedong Ogichidaa Society for the Keweenaw Bay Indian Community. He plays native flute with Waawiyeyaa, an organic indigenous rock band, and sings with Morning Thunder Drum and Teal Lake Drum.

H. John Vincent (Garceau)
New to the Advisory Board is H. John Vincent! H. John Vincent (Garceau) was born in Ontonagon, Michigan, left
the U.P. for years, and then returned to attend school and Ishpeming and graduate from Ishpeming High School. John
is married (45 years), has four grown children, and nine grandchildren (one in heaven). After graduation John joined
the US Coast Guard and was stationed at Air Station Traverse City as an aviation machinist mate, and was an air
rescue crewman aboard the helicopters and fixed wing aircraft. Upon leaving the Coast Guard, John attended
Palmer Chiropractic College and practiced as a chiropractic physician for 22 years in Wisconsin. John was ordained a
deacon in the Diocese of Green Bay in 2005, and began ministering as a full time hospital chaplain in Manitowoc,
Wisconsin. John currently is ministering part time in the Green Bay area as a hospice chaplain while still living in
Manitowoc with his wife, Arlene. John enjoys reading, praying, hiking/walking, kayaking, and biking, anything with
the family, hanging out with his brother, riding his Harley, and anything outdoors. John feels a spiritual connection
with Bishop Baraga and is inspired by Bishop Baraga's commitment, zeal in spreading God's word and love, and compassion for the Native People and early settlers of Michigan's Upper Peninsula. John has a connection with Bishop Baraga in that John has ancestors that helped build the first Catholic Church on Madeline Island, and had ancestors that were married and baptized by Bishop Baraga.

Curtis Chambers
New to the Advisory Board is Curtis Chambers! Mr. Chambers lives in
Cheboygan, Michigan with his wife, Jane. Together they have three
sons, Justin, Levi and Jeremy. Mr. Chambers is a retired harbormaster, a
St. Mary/St. Charles parishioner, and an active outdoorsman. For Mr.
Chambers, an interest in Venerable Bishop Frederic Baraga heightened
in 2002. While doing tribal research as chairman of the Burt Lake Band
of Ottawa and Chippewa Indians, Mr. Chambers became aware of the
sacrifices that Bishop Baraga made for the Native Americans of the
Great Lakes Region. Deeply influenced by Bishop Baraga’s work, Mr.
Chambers undertakes annual snowshoe pilgrimages. Traveling
distances of 125-150 miles, in subzero temperatures, averaging 20
miles a day, his relationship with God and with Bishop Baraga inspired
his first pilgrimage and every one since.