THEN: US COAST GUARD.
Growing up on a small-town farm outside Antigo, Wisconsin, Tony Baginski had a desire to serve his country. He graduated with a BS in Math and Computer Science in 1991—his first tour of duty was in Sitka, Alaska, as a buoy tender. Serving with an energetic crew, Tony recalls his commanding officer as “an excellent mentor modeling the actions that he expected from everyone on the crew.” Tony moved on to second in command of another buoy tender in Connecticut, and later attended graduate school where he earned his MBA and an MS in Computer Science from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. Like other men and women, he continued to enjoy the Coast Guard’s mission—but there was something missing.
It was during his time at graduate school and teaching at the Coast Guard Academy that Tony began to reexamine his life’s vocational calling. He met the Sisters of Saint Benedict in Ferdinand and was inspired by their incredible educational expertise and life-transforming sense of joy.
“I figured if I could find an order of dedicated men with such characteristics, I would join immediately.”
NOW: CHRISTIAN BROTHER.
That’s when Tony discovered the De La Salle Christian Brothers. Over the next seven years he came to know the men and their vocation, eventually igniting his second career. “What drew me to the Brothers was their commitment to provide ‘a human and Christian education’ to the students they taught. This is what I strive to accomplish every day.”