Brophy College Preparatory presented Dr. Maria Chavira, the Chancellor and Vice Moderator of the Curia for the Diocese of Phoenix, with the prestigious Inés Pascual Award on Saturday at a special breakfast in downtown Phoenix.

The award, established in 2017, is named for the Spanish noblewoman who came to the aid of Ignatius of Loyola as he began his physical and spiritual journey that led to the founding of the Society of Jesus — the Jesuits. Sra. Pascual met Ignatius when he was a soldier injured from battle, traveling from Montserrat to Manresa. She provided food, shelter and medical care, and later served as a fundraiser and businesswoman on his behalf.

Dr. Chavira’s role as Chancellor and Vice Moderator of the Curia touches almost every aspect of Catholic life within the Diocese of Phoenix. She is the first female vice moderator in the United States and assists the bishop in the oversight of the official archives of the Diocese in accordance with Canon Law. In addition to her work at the Diocese, Dr. Chavira, who received her doctorate in Educational Psychology from The University of Arizona, is an adjunct professor in the Department of Psychological Sciences at Mesa Community College. She also serves on the boards of the Catholic Community Foundation, Catholic Charities, the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and the Board of Directors for Downtown Phoenix.

Dr. Chavira and her husband, Deacon Billy Chavira, M.D., have three adult children—Michael, Matthew, and Miranda.

Each year, Brophy recognizes a woman in the community who models the compassion and commitment of Inés Pascual. Just as Sra. Pascual worked to ensure the success of Ignatius and eventually the founding of the Jesuits, the recipient of the Inés Pascual Award for Generous Service is recognized for the generous ways she works to animate the values and ideals we have inherited from St. Ignatius. The award is presented annually at the Mother-Son Communion Breakfast. The inaugural award was presented posthumously to Brophy’s foundress, Mrs. William Henry Brophy, and was received by her granddaughter, Mrs. Kate Brophy.