Harold, ’51, and the late Judy Schott are the 2021 recipients of Notre Dame Regional High School’s (NDHS) prestigious Annunciation Award.
The honor was bestowed by the NDHS Education Fund Foundation Oct. 22 during a dinner program at the Jackson Civic Center.
The award is presented annually to individuals who have devoted immeasurable time, talent or treasure to sustain Catholic secondary education in the community and whose presence, by word and deed, has enriched the lives of the students of Notre Dame and served as an example for all.
“Harold and Judy have supported Notre Dame Regional High school before their children Jeff Schott, Class of 1982, and their late daughter, Katherine Schott, Class of 1980, graced our halls on Ritter Drive. And continued to support us past the graduation of their grandson Jesse Schott, Class of 2012. We are blessed to have such amazing benefactors supporting our efforts to spread the gospel one student at a time,” Alex Jackson, Notre Dame Regional High School Director of Development.
The couple’s son, Jeff Schott, ’82, said that while his parents never sought recognition, they were always supportive of Catholic education and that his father continues to believe in its value.
“Catholic education means enough to (Harold) that he is continuing to support it,” despite it being nearly 10 years since his grandson Jesse completed his degree at NDHS, Jeff said. “He sees the benefit. That someone notices the importance that he places in it” is gratifying.
“Mom would have been very appreciative” too, Jeff said, adding his mother was a champion of Catholic education. “This would have meant a lot to mom.”
Harold retired in 1982 from Schott Electrical Distributors, a business his father, William B. Schott, founded in 1959 along with his children Dorothy Schott Holland, ’54, a previous Annunciation Award recipient; Robert Schott (’57); and Harold. Upon Harold’s retirement, his brother Robert became the company’s sole owner until the business was sold in 1998 to SMC in Cape Girardeau.
A parishioner of St. Mary Cathedral, Harold is a member of the Knights of Columbus Council #1111, where he has given countless hours of service. He has been a member of the Knights of Columbus for more than 50 years, earning him the title of “Honorary Life Member.” Harold is a past Grand Knight, a member of the Third Degree and is a “regular” at the KC Hall at 318 S. Spanish Street, where he serves as chief financial officer, overseeing a trust fund.
He has also been an avid golfer for nearly 50 years, playing an 18-hole round five days a week at Kimbeland Country Club in Jackson, Missouri. He has 13 holes-in-one to his credit, and with cart covers and a propane heater, he plays year-round.
Harold’s late wife, Judy, was a 1956 graduate of Cairo (Illinois) High School and a 1959 graduate of Holy Cross School of Nursing in South Bend, Indiana. The couple was married in 1960. Over her career, Judy served as a registered nurse at Saint Francis Healthcare System, a teacher at Metro Business College, program coordinator with the Muscular Dystrophy Association and development director from 1993-1995 of the NDHS Education Fund Foundation.
She was devoted to a life of service. She helped coordinate the NDHS Golden Jubilee and was active with the Council of Catholic Women, the St. Mary Cathedral Parish Council, WISER Board Center, the Women’s Center and the Safe House. She also served as president of the Saint Francis Medical Center Auxiliary from 1979-1984. She passed away in 2017.
In addition to their son Jeff, Harold and his late wife Judy are the parents of a late daughter, Katherine Schott, ’80; grandparents to Jesse (Ciara) Schott, ’12; and great-grandparents to Logan Schott, 2.