Alumni Association’s 2023 annual awards reception honors those making an impact in Philadelphia

November 2, 2023

Recipients will receive the John J. Finley, ’24, Award and the Signum Fidei Medal.

The 2023 recipient of the Signum Fidei Medal, Meg Kane, ’03, and the John J. Finley, ’24, Award, Savage Sisters Recovery.

The 2023 recipient of the John J. Finley, ’24, Award, Meg Kane, ’03, and the Signum Fidei Medal, Savage Sisters Recovery.

The La Salle University Alumni Association will honor two recipients with achievement awards during Homecoming and Family Weekend 2023.  

The 2023 recipients of the Signum Fidei Medal and the John J. Finley, ’24, Award will receive their honors during the Alumni Association’s annual awards reception on Friday, Nov. 10, in Founders’ Hall atrium.  

Learn more about this year’s awardees: 

John J. Finley, ’24, Award 

Meg Kane, ’03, President and CEO of Signature 57, a strategic communications firm with a special focus on hospitality, tourism, large-event strategy, along with arts, culture, and nonprofit, will receive this year’s John J. Finley, ’24, Award.   

The Finley Award is presented annually to a La Salle alumnus or alumna who has exhibited outstanding service to the University or the Alumni Association. The honor’s namesake, Finley, from La Salle’s Class of 1924, died in 1961. He stayed involved with the University in a multitude of ways, including serving as Alumni Association president, vice president, and treasurer. Finley earned the nickname “Mr. La Salle” for his dedication to the University.  

During her time at La Salle, Kane served as a La Salle Ambassador, was awarded the John McShain Award for Public Welfare, and was selected as University Commencement Speaker during her 2003 graduation. She is a former President of the University’s Alumni Association (2009 – 2011) and former Vice Chair of the Board of Trustees (2019 – 2022). Kane was the first woman to serve in that role and concluded a 10-year term as a trustee in 2022.  

My life has been shaped by La Salle University and the Christian Brothers in ways that I never expected, and I owe much of my success to the devoted faculty of this University.

Meg Kane, ’03

“To have the John J. Finley Award bestowed upon me is both humbling and deeply meaningful,” Kane said. “My life has been shaped by La Salle University and the Christian Brothers in ways that I never expected, and I owe much of my success to the devoted faculty of this University. La Salle invested in me, nourished me as a lifelong learner and leader, and it kept every promise it ever made to me. My service to the University over these past 20 years has been focused on—in some small way—repaying the debt I owe to La Salle and paying it forward for future generations. I am grateful to the Alumni Association Board of Directors for allowing me to join such an esteemed group of alumni whose names are synonymous with Lasallian leadership. But there is still more to do for La Salle, and I remain committed to that end.”  

Kane launched Signature 57 in 2021. Since its inception, the firm has built a strong reputation for strategy, sequencing, stakeholder relations, and storytelling. Its clients include VISIT PHILADELPHIA, Mural Arts Philadelphia, Jefferson Health, Horatio Alger Association, and Please Touch Museum to name a few.   

Kane also serves as Host City Executive for Philadelphia Soccer 2026, the nonprofit entity that won the City of Philadelphia’s bid to host matches for FIFA World Cup 2026. As Host City Executive, Kane now leads the operationalization of the Host City Committee, which is responsible for ensuring the hosting of World Cup matches at Lincoln Financial Field and an almost 40-day Fan Fest while welcoming over half a million visitors to Philadelphia in the summer of 2026.     

In 2023, Kane was named to City & State’s Above & Beyond list “recognizing 50 remarkable women who are blazing new trails in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.”  

With nearly 20 years of experience in Philadelphia-based public relations agencies, Kane’s previous work includes serving as the co-lead of strategic communications for the 2015 World Meeting of Families and the visit of Pope Francis to Philadelphia.  

“I heard about Meg before I had the chance to meet her,” said Alumni Association President Joe Markmann, Ph.D., MBA ’06, ’96. “Her reputation as a leader—formed while she was still an undergrad—preceded her.  When I finally met Meg, I totally got it. Meg is energetic, passionate, creative, and tireless in her support of La Salle. She has given tremendously in her time, talent and treasure and there is no one better suited to be selected as this year’s John J. Finley Awardee.” 

Signum Fidei Medal 

The highest form of recognition awarded by the La Salle Alumni Association, the Signum Fidei Medal has been given annually since 1942 and recognizes individuals or groups who have made noteworthy contributions to the advancement of humanitarian principles in keeping with the Christian-Judeo tradition. The Medal derives its name from the motto of the Christian Brothers—“Sign of Faith.”   

Savage Sisters Recovery, this year’s honoree, is focused on fighting addiction through radical love and connection. The mission is accomplished through the operation of three programs—housing, harm reduction, and education.  

Founded by brother and sister team Adam Al-Asad, ’21, and Sarah Laurel, the organization began as a trauma-informed women’s recovery home in 2019 and now serves more than 15,000 people a year with direct services.  

“The entire Savage Sisters Recovery team is honored and grateful to receive the Signum Fidei award in recognition of Savage Sisters efforts to serve the most vulnerable members of our community,” Al-Asad and Laurel said. “The Signum Fidei medal represents humanitarianism, service, and faith, three pillars we live by when serving our community. Each year we serve more than 16,000 people through the operation of our Housing, Harm Reduction, and Education programs. Each program contributes to our goals of eliminating accidental overdose death, eliminating the spread of infectious disease, and getting people off the streets and into recovery.” 

The Signum Fidei medal represents humanitarianism, service, and faith, three pillars we live by when serving our community.

Adam Al-Asad, ’21, and Sarah Laurel

The nonprofit operates nine recovery homes and a brick-and-mortar drop-in center for the community to access wound care and showers in the Kensington neighborhood.  

Savage Sisters also hosts nine street-based outreach events monthly and offers education sessions open to the public on overdose prevention and reversals. The sessions are provided statewide to schools, universities, businesses, places of worship, and individually.  

“We talk a lot about Lasallian values and for those who have not experienced a Christian Brothers education, this is very hard to explain,” Markmann said. “Sometimes an example or illustration brings meaning to the abstract. Adam Al-Asad’s efforts to support his sister’s sobriety while a student at La Salle University led to the organization that they’ve built, Savage Sisters, and is the epitome of Lasallian values in action through their efforts to provide housing, outreach, and advocacy for those battling addiction in Kensington.”