After taking a break over the summer, the St. Sebastian Buildings & Grounds Committee is assessing several projects, which may result in more activity than the parish has seen in many years.

Chair Holly Rutenbeck – a City of Milwaukee structural engineer – is vitally connected to Sebs. Her parents are parishioners, she is a 1999 alum, she married her husband Americo in 2009, her son attends Sebs, and her 2-year-old daughter is ready to keep the tradition going.

“My current goal as the new chair is to prioritize the outstanding and upcoming projects based on safety and needs of the parish and school so that large-scale projects can be properly planned and budgeted while also providing more transparency with our plans for the future,” she says.

Holly says bids for several projects are still coming in, and by the looks of it, we will need to do some more fundraising, unless professionals volunteer to help out. Here’s the latest:

  • School Facility
    • East gym wall has been sealed. Work is complete.
    • Parking lot will be re-sealed October 4-5 weather permitting. The playground committee will share the updated pavement marking plan for painting the new lines.
    • School sink updates are delayed, as the work is difficult to do when classes are in session. Parishioner and plumber Brian Fitzpatrick has volunteered to install the remaining sinks on nights and weekends to get the job done.
    • Water bottle filling station proposals are being reviewed.
    • School computer lab wiring is being updated.
    • Installing a security key code lock at the north PAL entrance.
    • Installing new blackout shades in one classroom as a pilot program to determine functionality before replacing the shades in all classrooms.
    • Repairing the school playground flagpole.
  • Welcome Projects
    • Bell tower lighting and solar project proposals and designs are coming in.
    • Washington Blvd front step repairs are more complex than originally anticipated, so we are soliciting proposals for full replacement of the stairs.
    • The cost for these projects likely will be more than the auction funds raised.
  • Church Facility
    • Interior fixtures are being replaced with efficient LEDs as funding and time allows.
    • Replacing the roof on the south side of the Parish house.
    • Soliciting proposals for tuckpointing the Bell Tower.
    • Updating/installing new fire safety signs.
  • Capital Improvement
    • Working closely with Finance Council to create a capital improvement program that will prioritize projects moving into the future, based on inspections of HVAC, plumbing, electrical and facades.

With all of these important (and expensive) items, Holly says the committee would love to have more volunteers who could spearhead individual projects or help in the work.

“We need plumbers, electricians, HVAC inspectors, painters, concrete finishers and other professionals,  along with licensed inspectors who can provide recommendations to the committee,” she says. If you have friends or family who might be willing to volunteer, contact Holly at

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