||Marc Ott, lead architect for Gorman & Company, displays some of the items that will be part of the History Lounge in Holy Name Heights, the former Holy Name Seminary in Madison (Catholic Herald photo/Kevin Wondrash).
MADISON -- “We really want to tell the entire story of what it was like to leave home and come to a seminary school and live every day with hundreds of other young men.”
In addition to being the lead architect on the project to repurpose the Bishop O’Connor Center (BOC) in Madison -- the former Holy Name Seminary -- Marc Ott from Gorman & Company has taken on a sentimental role.
Ott, member of St. Maria Goretti Parish in Madison, along with his wife and children who attend school there, is heading up the efforts to make part of the Holy Name Heights building a museum.
The so-called “History Lounge,” along with other parts of the building, will tell the stories of more than three decades of students who learned and lived within its walls.
The project has sentimental meaning for Ott who is a 1992 graduate of New Glarus High School and used to compete at Holy Name in football and wrestling.
Ott said it’s a “very special connection” and a “lot of fun” to work on the project there.
Looking back and looking ahead
Holy Name opened in 1963 and closed in 1995. The building was then renovated and re-opened in 1998 as the Bishop O’Connor Catholic Pastoral Center.
Since then, it has been serving as the home of diocesan offices and other organizations such as Catholic Charities, the Catholic Herald, Relevant Radio, and Catholic Mutual Group.
Within the last few years, studies were done to determine how to make better use of the building.