NORWICH – More than one of Norwich’s athletic programs have been saved from the chopping block, thanks to the generosity of a local company. Monday night, the Norwich City School Board accepted a $10,000 donation from Professional Teleconcepts (Pro-Tel).
“It is my understanding that these funds will be used to reinstate several athletic programs that have recently been cut by the district due to lack of funding,” said Pro-Tel President and CEO Eric Burrell, in the letter which accompanied the $10,000 check. Burrell, himself a Norwich alum, added that the company was proud to give back to the community in this way.
Superintendent Gerard O’Sullivan thanked Pro-Tel for their “tremendous generosity,” calling the $10,000 gift “manna from heaven.”
According to Athletic Director Steve Griffin, the money will enable the district to reinstate modified softball and baseball teams, as well as a coaching position for track.
Griffin said he was prompted to reach out to Burrell by John McCumiskey, who coached the former Norwich athlete in the early 1980s. Pro-Tel has long been a supporter of the school’s athletic department, he reported, and he had hoped they could be persuaded to donate $1,000. But in a phone call in which they discussed the programs being cut, Burrell stunned the athletic director by upping the ante...