Meet Gary Rectenwald: Executive Director of the Catholic Community Foundation of San Diego
by DAKOTA CAMPAGNA 
Published - 04/07/19 - 11:59 AM | 1642 views | 0 0 comments | 23 23 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Gary Rectenwald has been the executive director of the Catholic Community Foundation of San Diego since 2016.

Courtesy photo
Gary Rectenwald has been the executive director of the Catholic Community Foundation of San Diego since 2016. Courtesy photo
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Gary Rectenwald is the executive director of the Catholic Community Foundation of San Diego. He was named to this position in February of 2016.

Before becoming executive director, he had a technical background, working in executive management for IBM for 20 years. After starting some high tech companies of his own as well, and then selling them, he decided to go into retirement. He wasn’t in retirement for long, however, as he was asked to sit on the board at his parish, All Hallows Catholic Church in La Jolla, because he was very active within the church. 
 
“I just thought this would be great to learn about something that would be brand new, in serving the Catholic community in San Diego,” said Rectenwald. “The more I got involved with it, the more interested I got in it.”

He was asked to put his name in the hat for the executive director position opening, which he was then awarded. “I was happy to do it,” said Rectenwald. “This is the only position that I would have come out of retirement to do, frankly.” 

The Catholic Community Foundation supports various Catholic schools and parishes around San Diego and also helps over 150 charities. They are also one of 28 Catholic Community Foundations in the United States, according to the Catholic Community Foundation of San Diego website. The Foundation is separate from the Diocese of San Diego.

As executive director, Rectenwald has brought about a culture where the focus of their mission is “the need to give rather than giving to a need.”

“Catholic stewards truly have a need to give, and to give back to God in ways that are very spiritual,” said Rectenwald. “Essentially, we are an organization which helps facilitate their need to give.” Within Rectenwald’s first two years of being executive director, the foundation was able to raise 50 million dollars, where 99% of it was sent off to these various charities that they support.

Something that Rectenwald does frequently throughout the week as executive director is meet with various donors. From individuals to families, to other organizations, he talks to the people who put on outreach programs and are looking for other foundations to support them. If he’s not busy doing that, he’s sitting in on financial meetings, making sure the foundations’ finances are being used properly and that they support Catholic values.

The Catholic Community Foundation also partners with other parishes to put on Catholic Estate and Planned Giving seminars, where they work with large organizations of partitioners. 
 
“We remind them of what it’s like to be Catholic and we instruct them about their estate plans, whether they be wills, trusts, financial power of attorney’s,” said Rectenwald. “We teach them about those things, and then we let them know about all these wonderful Catholic ministries that we have here in San Diego. We hope that they would consider adding something Catholic to their estate plan as a part of their legacy.”

For more about the Catholic Community Foundation of San Diego, visit ccfsd.org.
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