Aquinas Institute, sponsored by the Order of Preachers (Dominicans), instituted the Great Preacher Award in 1995 to recognize those, who by their words and actions, have contributed in an outstanding way to the building of the Catholic community. Aquinas Institute considers the Great Preacher Award a powerful means of renewing the Church and promoting good preaching while sharing its Dominican charism. The award is intended not only to sustain preachers of the Word but also to help Catholics become more attuned to hearing the Word.

The Dominican emblem is a dog with the torch of Truth in its mouth. Legend has it that when the mother of St. Dominic was pregnant she experienced a curious dream. In it she gave birth to a dog with a blazing torch in its mouth, signifying Dominic’s mission to set the world on fire with his preaching.

Previous Great Preacher Award Recipients

2017 – Rev. Ed Stanger & Rev. Jeffrey H. Goeckner
2016 – Msgr. William J. Hitpas & Rev. John Rogers Vien
2015 – Bishop Robert E. Barron
2014 – Most Reverend Robert J. Shaheen
2013 – Msgr. Michael E. Turek
2012 – Most. Rev. J. Terry Steib, S.V.D.
2011 – Rev. Mr. Dennis Chitwood
2010 – Cardinal Francis George, O.M.I.
2009 – Msgr. Vincent R. Bommarito
2008 – Msgr. Patrick Hambrough 
2007 – Father James A. Krings 
2006 – Rev. Dale Wunderlich 
2005 – Monsignor William A. Drennan 
2004 – Rev. Joe Kempf
2003 – Rev. Donald Wester
2002 – Most Reverend Wilton D. Gregory
2001 – Sister Joan Delaplane, O.P.
2000 – Reverend Gary Braun
1999 – Most Reverend Paul A. Zipfel
1998 – Reverend John F. Kavanaugh, S.J.
1997 – Monsignor James Telthorst
1996 – Joseph Cardinal Bernadin
1995 – Reverend James Cormack, C.M.