Dagmar Braun Celeste

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search

Dagmar Ingrid Braun Celeste (born 1941) is a counselor, Christian priest, and author. The former first lady of Ohio, she was married to former Ohio governor (1983–1991) and U.S. ambassador Richard F. Celeste, whom she met while attending Oxford University in England. They have six grown children, and were divorced in 1995.

Early life[edit]

Celeste was born in Krems, Austria.

Degrees and licenses[edit]

Celeste holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in women's studies, a public policy law degree[citation needed] from Capital University, and a master's degree in alcoholism and drug abuse ministry from the Methodist Theological School in Ohio. She is also a licensed Polarity practitioner.

Politics and social issues[edit]

Some notable achievements as first lady of Ohio included chairing the Ohio Recovery Council, spearheading the drive to establish the first state-sponsored on-site child care center and Employee Assistance Program in Ohio, initiating the Task Force on Family Violence, co-chairing the Governor's Commission on Volunteerism, and serving as Co-Chair of the Council on Holocaust Education. She was an Ohio delegate to the Democratic Convention in 1980.[1] Since 1992, she has continued to remain politically active through such organizations as the National Peace Institute, Women's Action for Nuclear Disarmament, the Council for Ethics in Economics, and the Women's Community Fund in Cleveland.[2]


In 2002, Celeste announced that she had secretly been ordained a priest of the Roman Catholic Church under the pseudonym of "Angela White". She was one of seven women, the "Danube Seven", ordained by Argentinian independent Catholic bishop Rómulo Antonio Braschi on a boat on the Danube River, making her the first female American Roman Catholic to call herself a priest. Celeste was subsequently excommunicated by the Roman Catholic Church, which does not recognize the validity of the ordination of women.[3][4]

Other activities[edit]

Celeste serves as the executive director of the Tyrian network, "an intentional learning community founded in 2000 on Kelleys Island, Ohio and dedicated to Brigid, both the Goddess and the Saint".[5] She is the author of the auto-biographical book We Can Do Together: Impressions of a Recovering Feminist First Lady. She has also participated in productions of The Vagina Monologues.[6] She is a long-standing professional Life Balance Coach who developed an individualized three-month coaching process designed to empower one to discover a life worth living by embracing the life one is truly called to.



  1. ^ Time Magazine article
  2. ^ Biographical note from Kent State University Library website
  3. ^ CBS News Website
  4. ^ NCR Online Website
  5. ^ Tyrian Network website: source of quote
  6. ^ East Shore Unitarian Universalist Church website


  • Women Find A Way: the Movement and Stories of Roman Catholic WomenPriests Edited by Elsie Hainz McGrath, Bridget Mary Meehan & Ida Raming ISBN 978-1-60264-223-2
  • Making Waves, a play / oral history project by Kay Eaton and Cece Miller of Sacred Space in Cleveland, OH, includes a reading of the career of Dagmar Celeste

External links[edit]