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Frank Jonna '67 - 2023 Recipient of Fr. Canning F. Harrison, CSB Distinguished Alumnus Award

Born in Baghdad, Frank’s family immigrated to Detroit when he was six months old; he was one of seven children.

After graduating from Catholic Central in 1967, Frank worked for his eldest brother at Jonna Construction during the day as a construction laborer. Then he worked at another brother’s grocery store at night. He also attended night classes at Wayne State. Those long hours gave him the opportunity to learn both the retail and the construction business.

Frank became a partner at Jonna Construction in 1980. At this time, the company experienced its most significant growth and started the development side of the business. In 1999, Frank was named CEO, providing direct oversight of the business's construction and development aspects.

During Frank’s time as CEO, the company built and developed retail, office, medical, industrial, hospitality, and multi-family projects. Jonna Construction purchased the previous Catholic Central High School site in Redford, which helped move the construction of the Novi location forward.

In 2022, Frank was inducted into the Michigan Construction Hall of Fame as a tribute to his many accomplishments in construction over his 50+ year career in the industry. His ability to listen and understand clients’ needs, combined with his deep knowledge of the business and quiet intensity, helped the company achieve long-term success.

Frank served on the Catholic Central School Board of Directors and as Chair of the Catholic Central Alumni Association for many years. He was a leader in the creation and support of Catholic Central’s endowment. Furthermore, he was successful in procuring donor gifts that CC was able to use in developing our Novi Campus.

As a Chaldean American, Frank has proudly given back to his community through his work with the Chaldean Chamber of Commerce and Shenandoah Country Club.

Frank married his wife, Judy, in 1975. Frank and Judy have four children: Hether Frayer (Matt), Joey ‘98 (Tammy), Jeffrey, and Brianna. Frank and Judy have five grandchildren: Jonna Frayer, Haniya Frayer, Tyler Jonna (CC ‘27), Ethan Jonna (CC ‘27), and Derek Jonna (CC ‘29).

The faith, family values, and work ethic Frank learned at CC have served as the foundation for all aspects of his life.

Join Catholic Central Alumni Association in honoring Frank at the 34th Annual Alumni Dinner & All Classes Reunion Thursday, April 27 from 5:30 to 10 PM at St. Mary Cultural Center. Register here.

Frank Jonna '67 Senior Portrait

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