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Sister Sally Walz, teacher, school administrator

Oct. 24, 1938 – March 25, 2016

Sister Sally Walz, formerly Sister William Marie, a teacher and school administrator, died March 25. She was 77.

Born Sarah Ann Walz in Buffalo, she grew up in South Buffalo and attended School 29. After graduating from Mount Mercy Academy in 1956, she entered the Sisters of Mercy and earned a bachelor’s degree in history from Mount St. Joseph College, now Medaille College, and a master’s degree in administration from Niagara University.

She taught elementary, junior high and high school classes in Buffalo, Wellsville, Olean and Niagara Falls. From 1979 to 1987, she was principal of Mount Mercy Academy, then held various positions at Trocaire College, including vice president of academic affairs.

From 2000 to 2013, she was director of development and alumnae at Mount Mercy Academy and assistant director of development for the Sisters of Mercy.

She also was assistant coordinator for the Retirement Fund for Religious for the Catholic Diocese of Buffalo, where she helped design a program that became a model for other dioceses across the nation. She also was an advocate on women’s issues.

She was a member of the boards of trustees of Bishop Timon-St. Jude High School, Trocaire College, the South Buffalo Education Center, South East Mental Health Corp. and the National Association of Secondary School Principals. She also was a member of the Canisius College Board of Regents.

She was the first woman to receive an honorary doctor of letters degree from Canisius College.

She also was given the Judge John Hillery Award from Bishop Timon-St. Jude High School, the Mount Mercy Academy Catherine McAuley Distinguished Alumna Award and the Buffalo Public School Mentor Recognition Award. Mount Mercy Academy, where she established the first comprehensive girls’ athletic program, named its Athletic Wall of Fame in her honor.

Survivors include a sister, Mary Alice, and a brother, William.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be offered at 10 a.m. Saturday in the Mercy Center Convent Chapel, 625 Abbott Road.

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