Donors

What’s in a name? While “Bonnies Athletic Fund” may be a little hard to define, its pulse is the people who help strengthen St. Bonaventure Athletics. So, we are beginning a monthly profile of a BAF member to give you some insight into other donors, their passions, inspirations and motivations.

Rick Stearns
Class of:
1965
Resides: New Smyrna Beach, Fla.
Hometown: Poughkeepsie, N.Y.
Occupation: Retired insurance agency owner
BAF Member Since: 1978 

Q: What makes you so passionate about St. Bonaventure Athletics? 
RS: I feel athletics is the core of school spirit for the Bona students and alumni. Our spirit has always been strong because we are the little school against the big guys. Go to a game home or away, feel the passion again.

Q: When did you first become involved with supporting the BAF and why?
RS: I joined the BAF in 1987 when I realized that the Athletic Department had additional needs that were unfunded from the university budget. Other schools our size were already doing athletic fund raising. In addition to fundraising, I was particularly interested in special project fund raising such as the weight room, locker rooms, Hall of Fame addition and athletic field improvements. None of these projects were able to be funded by the university budget.

Q: Why do you feel compelled to support the BAF and the Fields Project?
RS: My support and encouraging others to support the BAF is critical as it is the backbone of the Athletic Program. Without the BAF there is not sustainability!

Q: What is your top Bonnies sports memory and why?
RS: For me standing and cheering at Bonnies’ championships in the 1977 NIT in the Garden and the 2012 Atlantic 10 in Atlantic City were my most memorable moments.

Q: If you were going to “sell” St. Bonaventure to a prospective student, what would you tell them?RS: St. Bonaventure across the decades has always embodied great spirit, solid education and values and its students form lasting and valued friendships.

Q: What hopes and aspirations do you have for St. Bonaventure athletics?
RS: My hope is that the men and women basketball teams reach post-season play three out of every five years and that non-revenue sports will finish in the top half of the league.

 


Walter Stubbs
Class of:
1987
Resides: Hoboken, NJ
Hometown: Washington Twp, N.J. and Blairstown, N.J.
Occupation: SIU Claim Specialist, State Farm Insurance
BAF Member Since: 1999

Q: What makes you so passionate about St. Bonaventure Athletics?
WS: I’ve always been passionate about sports and my favorite teams growing up. When I went to Bonaventure, that passion went to the men’s basketball team. Unfortunately, when I got to Bonas, my class was the first class to graduate without going to any postseason in the four years I was there. I guess that got me even more passionate.

Q: When did you first become involved with supporting the BAF and why?
WS: I got involved after finding out how much it takes to be competitive in Division 1 athletics. Being a small, private university in upstate NY, it is even harder to keep up with not only the BCS state schools who have football, but also with the schools in the Atlantic 10.

Q: Why do you feel compelled to support the BAF and Sixth Man Club?
WS: I feel that by giving what I can, I’m helping our student-athletes get the resources necessary to compete at a high level.

Q: What is your top Bonnies sports memory and why?
WS: Actually there are two. First was at the Reilly Center in 2000 when we (men’s basketball) played Temple. I came back that weekend with mom and dad, who hadn’t been up to the school since I graduated in 1987. My dad would pass away the following year. We beat Temple when JR Bremer hit the three from the corner that led us to our first NCAA Tournament since 1979. I still remember there still being time on the clock and I told everybody in the HOF room that the game wasn’t over. Sure enough, Pepe Sanchez launches a three from half court that him the front of the rim and bounced away. Second was sitting at the Atlantic City Convention Hall and watching us beat Xavier to get the automatic berth in 2012.

Q: If you were going to “sell” St. Bonaventure to a prospective student, what would you tell them? WS: If I was selling Bonaventure to a student, I would tell them that if you are looking for a small school that will give you individual learning and a chance to get to know many people that will later become friends for life, Bonas is the school for you. It’s remarkable how a lot of Bona grads are friends today, not only with people they graduated with, but with alums who graduated years before or after they did. Friends for life.

Q: What hopes and aspirations do you have for St. Bonaventure athletics?
WS: My hopes are that we remain competitive in a tough Division 1 conference, be it men’s and women’s basketball, to swimming and baseball. While we may not win the conference every year, I think we should have expectations that once every few years we have a chance to win a championship or get to the tournament.


To suggest a BAF member for a future profile, write to Steve Mest ’91 at smest@sbu.edu.