Date of Chartering Apr 28, 1988
Archdiocese of Detroit Archbishop Allen H. Vigneron
President Mike Brown
Chapter Chaplain Monsignor Charles Kosanke
The Detroit Chapter’s roots date to the formation of Legatus when Tom Monaghan held the first informational meeting in Ann Arbor, Michigan, on June 2, 1987. At that time, officers for the then-Michigan Chapter were selected. They included Detroit-area members Frank Stella, president; Angelo DiPonio, treasurer; Sr. Mary Francilene VanderVyver, secretary; John Sennett, program chairman; and Tom Angott, membership chairman.
Through the efforts of Angott (for whom the Angott Award would later be named to honor the chapter with the greatest annual increase in membership), the Michigan Chapter held its first formal meeting on April 28, 1988, with the induction of 82 new members. By August 1989, with membership then exceeding 100, members began exploring the creation of a second chapter in the state.
The Detroit Chapter formally came into its own in 1992 with Richard Gabrys, president; John Sennett, vice president; John Kruse, treasurer; Sr. Mary Francilene VanderVyver, secretary; Richard Genthe, program chairman; Tom Angott, membership chairman; and Fr. (later Archbishop) John Nienstedt as chaplain. In recognition for his founding services, Frank Stella was given the special designation of president emeritus.
The Detroit Chapter continued to enjoy explosive growth (repeatedly winning the Angott Award), and when its own membership peaked at 123 members, it was divided with the formation of Detroit Northeast as a separate chapter in 2002.
The Detroit Chapter was the working experiment where many of the methods and means of running a chapter were developed. Eventually these would come to be utilized as the template for chapters throughout the country.