Brunswick launches capital campaign

Brunswick School has set forth on a new challenge, a $100 million capital campaign that will be the largest in the school’s 110-year history.

It’s a challenge that must be met, Brunwick’s Headmaster Thomas Philip said.

“Above all else, courage, honor and truth have to take precedence,” Mr. Philip said. “That’s the defining element of Brunswick.”

Preserving and strengthening the Greenwich boys’ school’s “defining element” requires the drive to raise $100 million, Greenwich resident and chairman of the school’s Board of Trustees Sanjeev K. Mehra told a crowd of more than 800 parents, alumni and friends gathered at Brunswick’s King Street campus.

“This will be the largest fund-raising effort in our history and one of enormous import to the future of the school,” said Mr. Mehra, who is the father of four Brunswick boys.

Called “Above All Else… Courage, Honor, Truth,” the campaign seeks major gifts to: Attract and retain the very best faculty, enrich students’ academic experience, create a center for Character & Leadership Education and expand opportunities for team sports and fitness, including construction of an $18 million underground swimming pool at the school’s Edwards Campus on King Street

Inviting attendees to join him in raising a 110th anniversary toast to Brunswick, Mr. Mehra noted the trustees’ unanimous vote of support for the major initiative.

“Our aspirations for our boys and our school are justly at the highest level,” he said.

The campaign is co-chaired by Greenwich residents Thomas D. O’Malley, Jr., an alumnus and father of three Brunswick boys, and Michael A. Troy, father of two Brunswick boys.

“The one area where Brunswick lags behind our peer schools and those we look to as benchmarks for our own performance is in the level of our endowment,” Mr. Troy said. “That’s why, of the $100 million we seek, $70 million is earmarked for new endowment, mostly in support of our faculty and for increased financial aid for students.”

Mr. O’Malley offered a personal perspective.

“I’ve seen Brunswick from multiple vantage points,” he said. “As an alumnus, the son and brother of alumni, and as the parent of three Brunswick boys the vantage point of parent is perhaps the most insightful. We get to see first-hand the transformation that occurs in our sons during their time at Brunswick.

“It’s a special alchemy that takes place here,” Mr. O’Malley added. “Our purpose, as the title ‘Above all else…’ suggests, is to make it possible for Brunswick to continue to take this recipe and turn it into gold for our sons and for those who will follow in their footsteps.”

In the campaign’s “quiet phase” leading up to Thursday night’s announcement, $42 million in gifts and pledges has already been raised. Mr. O’Malley said this shows there’s strong community support for the initiative.

Mr. Philip underscored the importance of investing to adapt Brunswick’s educational program to the challenges of life in a more complex and global society.

“The reality is that over the last 110 years, the world has changed enormously,” he said.

“The challenge of teaching courage, honor and truth is so much greater than it’s ever been. And it makes it more important than it’s ever been. We want to move still further. We want to adapt to the world in which our boys are now living.

“That’s what we can do in this campaign: To emphasize that, all the time, in every situation, for our boys, from small to large, as they learn and grow, that above all else, courage, honor and truth will define them now and as young men and leaders in the future. We’re now at a moment where we can bring Brunswick to the next level.”

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