Diocesan Review Board

The Diocesan Review Board assists the bishop in promptly responding to any allegation of sexual misconduct by members of the diocesan clergy or other diocesan personnel. Members are:

Lester Amann , Chairman

Mr. Amann is President and Co-Owner of Amric Associates, LTD, a full service investigative and security consulting firm. Previously, Mr. Amann was a Special Agent for nearly thirty years, fourteen of which were as the Senior Supervisory Senior Resident Agent, for the Federal Bureau of Investigation in the Central New York Region.

Mr. Amann is a member of the Society of Former Special Agents of the FBI, the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners, the City of Syracuse/County of Onondaga Drug and Alcohol Abuse Commission, Chairman of the Syracuse Onondaga Businesses Against Drugs and Past President of the Federal Executive Associates.

Rev. Clifford H. Auth, JCL

Rev. Auth is Pastor of St. Anne's Church in Manlius, New York.  Prior to this Father Auth served as the Chancellor and Vicar for Administration for the Diocese of Syracuse and as the weekend Associate at St. Mary’s and St. Augustine’s Church in Baldwinsville. Fr. Cliff is a native son of St. Daniel’s Church in Lyncourt, attended St. Daniel’s elementary school, Solvay High School and LeMoyne College. He received a Bachelor of Arts degree from LeMoyne College and a Masters in Divinity from St. Mary’s Seminary and University in Baltimore. He was ordained on May 6 1999. He served as Parochial Vicar at St. James Johnson City for six years and completed a degree in Canon Law from Catholic University.

Sr. Grace Anne Dillenschneider, OSF

Sister Grace Anne is the Vicar for Relgiious for th Diocese of Syracuse.  As a Sister of St. Francis, she has been a teacher, principal, religious education teacher, Vice President for Mission in a local hospital, administrator of the care center for the senior sisters and served in Leadership of her religious congregation. She has also ministered part-time as co-director of Franciscan Collaborative Ministries in Syracuse and continues to assists with the Cause of Blessed Marianne Cope for sainthood.

Sister Grace Anne has a Bachelor of Arts Degree from Medaille College in Buffalo, New York, a Masters in Special Education from Syracuse University and a Masters in Administration from Boston College. She also received an honorary PHD in Humanities from Le Moyne College.

Christine Larkin

Christine Larkin is a 1978 graduate from SUNY Oswego with a bachelor’s degree in Public Justice. She began working for Onondaga County Child Protective Services in 1979, specializing in the field of sexual abuse. Ms. Larkin supervised the Sexual Abuse Investigations Unit from 1990 to 2004 until her appointment as Assistant Director in Children’s Division. As Assistant Director, Ms. Larkin was responsible for the Sex Abuse Investigations Unit and the Sex Abuse Services Unit. In July 2010 Ms. Larkin became the Coordinator for the Onondaga County Child Fatality Review Team where she coordinates a multidisciplinary team of approximately 25 professionals who review the unexpected deaths of children up to the age of 18.

Ms. Larking is a member of the Sexual Abuse Study and Treatment Team since its inception in 1981 and has participated on several different boards, including the New York chapter of the American Professional Society on the Abuse of Children. In addition, Ms. Larkin is a trainer for the Forensic Interviewing Best Practices, instructing forensic interviewers, law enforcement officers and child protective caseworkers who work in the field of child sexual abuse.

Nancy Wright, MSW, CSW

Ms. Wright has over thirty years of experience in the social work field and extensive experience in counseling victims of child sexual abuse. She is recently retired as a Psychiatric Social Worker and Associate Director of the Child Abuse Project for the Child and Adolescent Psychiatric Clinic at SUNY Health Science Center in Syracuse. She was also employed as the Psychiatric Social Worker for the Center for Youth Services Adolescent Outpatient Clinic for nearly 20 years. She has been in private practice of individual and family therapy since 1982. Professional memberships include: the National Association of Social Workers, Syracuse Sex Abuse Team, and the NYS Society of Clinical Social Work.

Diocesan Review Board Policy

In response to widespread concern over sexual abuse of minors by clerics, the bishops of the U.S. have published the Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People. The Charter commits the Church to promote healing and reconciliation of sexually abused persons, and to protect our faithful in the future. To this end, and consonant with the directives of the Charter, the Diocese of Syracuse establishes this Review Board to assist the bishop as a consultive body in assessing allegations and fitness for ministry, to regularly review policies pertaining to the personal safety of children, and to advise the bishop on all aspects of responses required in connection with the sexual abuse of minors.

The Review Board (“Board”) shall consist of not less than five members, nor more than seven. Its members shall include one priest, at least one member with expertise in sexual abuse of minors, and at least one member with expertise in law enforcement. The Board shall select by a majority vote from among its members a chairperson who shall serve for one year, re-electable.

Members shall serve upon written appointment by the diocesan bishop for a period of five years, renewable. The Board shall meet at least quarterly and otherwise as needed, at the discretion of the Board or the bishop.

Members shall serve upon written appointment by the diocesan bishop for a period of five years, renewable. The Board shall meet at least quarterly and otherwise as needed, at the discretion of the Board or the bishop.

The Assistance Coordinator, the bishop (and his appointees) and diocesan counsel shall be present at meetings of the Board at the discretion of the Board.

All matters discussed and all information presented to the Board shall be maintained in a confidential manner, to be disclosed only to the extent necessary, to the parties involved, to the bishop or persons designated by the bishop or as required by church or civil Law. Functions of the Board shall include:

  1. Review, on an annual basis, diocesan written policies on the sexual abuse of minors by priests, deacons or other church personnel in order to recommend to the diocesan bishop any modifications or additions to the existing policy.
  2. Assess retrospective allegations referred to the Board by the diocesan bishop and all new allegations of sexual abuse of minors by priests, deacons and other church personnel. The Board shall advise the bishop as to its findings and recommendations.
  3. Make recommendations to the diocesan bishop concerning fitness for types of ministry in conjunction with the Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People.
  4. Assist in related issues as requested by the bishop.

All clergy and religious, employees, and volunteers serving the Diocese are expected to cooperate fully with the Board and its representatives.