After a long search, the Archdiocese of Denver recently welcomed Brenda Cannella as its new Chief Financial Officer at the beginning of the year. Cannella brings extensive experience and knowledge to the archdiocese. She has spent the last decade in various finance roles at FOCUS, most recently as the VP of finance.
We sat down with Cannella, who was kind enough to introduce herself and share more insight on what she hopes to accomplish in her new role.
Denver Catholic: What sort of background do you come from?
Cannella: I grew up Catholic and am originally from a small town near Houston, Texas. I have an accounting degree from the University of Houston. I began my accounting career in the Houston office of the former Big 6 public accounting firm, Arthur Andersen, and am a CPA formerly licensed in Texas. My husband, Troy, and I moved to Colorado just over 20 years ago and have been very blessed by our experience of being Catholic here in the Archdiocese of Denver. We have been married 30 years, have 5 beautiful children and live in Erie. We have been parishioners at St. Louis in Louisville and St. Thomas Aquinas in Boulder during our time in Colorado. Just prior to joining the archdiocese, I had the great fortune of spending ten years being formed as a disciple while serving in Finance at FOCUS, Fellowship of Catholic University Students. My last five years at FOCUS were as Vice President of Finance.
DC: What does it mean for you to be the new CFO of the Archdioceses of Denver?
Cannella: I am deeply honored to be the CFO for the archdiocese. There is an amazing leadership team in place here at the archdiocese and I am grateful for the opportunity to be on mission with this team at this time in the Church.
DC: What are your goals as the new CFO?
Cannella: My primary goal is to continue the great work of those who preceded me in this role and to look for opportunities to work collaboratively among all diocesan entities to become even better stewards of the assets of our archdiocese. Finance, administration and planning in the Archdiocese of Denver is on a firm foundation built by our prior CFOs. From this foundation, I plan to continue to orient the resources and administration of the archdiocese toward achieving the mission of the Church which is to share the good news of Jesus Christ and make disciples of all nations.
DC: What are the greatest joys and challenges that you face in your new position?
Cannella: One of the greatest joys of this new role is the opportunity to serve the priests, religious and lay faithful of my own community, the Archdiocese of Denver. The allocation and stewardship of financial resources is always a challenge but one that can be met if we seek God’s will in all things.
DC: What are you most grateful for in this opportunity in your life and career?
Cannella: I’m very grateful for the gift of faith and for the many opportunities that God has given me to grow closer to Him in my life and career. He was very patient with me during times in my life when I thought my life and career were about me! He waited for me to realize that He gave me the gifts and talents He did so that I can use them for His greater glory and for the salvation of souls. My life is committed to the fulfillment of the great commission and to living up to the invitation of our Lord to participate in His plan for salvation to the best of my ability with the help of grace.