Norwich Free Academy Receives $12 Million for Endowment

Norwich Free Academy, a private secondary school, in Norwich, Connecticut, has announced a $12 million gift to its endowment from Sidney E. Frank, chairman and founder of the Sidney Frank Importing Company.

The largest single gift ever made to the school, Frank's gift is the second seven-figure donation he has made to NFA in as many years; last year he gave the school $1 million. In recognition of his contributions over the past ten years, the school will name its new music and art center the Sidney E. Frank Center for Visual and Performing Arts.

A 1938 graduate of NFA, Frank built a successful business as an importer and distributor of specialty liquors. In addition to his gifts to Norwich, recipients of his philanthropy have included Brown University, the New York Police & Fire Widows' and Children's Benefit Fund, the Children's Aid Society, and the Frank Lloyd Wright Preservation Trust.

"This is a transforming gift for the Norwich Free Academy," said NFA superintendent/principal Mary Lou Bargnesi. "To recognize Mr. Frank's generosity, we will name the new building to honor him, but because the gift is to the unrestricted endowment, we will have the latitude to use the funds as we see fit and apply them to areas of greatest need."

"NFA Receives Largest Gift in Its History." Norwich Free Academy Press Release 11/09/2004.