Athletics News


American Legion Post 278 donates $10,000 to Chesapeake College Fitness Center Campaign
Tradition of charitable giving continues

WYE MILLS – Kent Island American Legion Post 278’s tradition of charitable giving to Chesapeake College continued with last Wednesday night’s $10,000 donation to the Stuart M. Bounds Fitness Center Fundraising Campaign.

"We actually started our involvement with Chesapeake College about 1980, when we donated our first $10,000 to start the Wrightson Tolson Scholarship," said Hugo Gemignani, chair of Post 278’s Charity Committee. "I think that fund now has two or three hundred thousand dollars in it. Chesapeake College is one of the primary recipients of our charitable donations."

Dr. Barbara Viniar, Chesapeake College’s president, accepted Post 278’s check on behalf of the college.

"I appreciate this very generous contribution and Post 278’s long-term commitment to both the college and the community," said Dr. Viniar. "This organization is an outstanding community partner."

In addition to the Wrightson Tolson Scholarship – annually awarded to Chesapeake College students from Queen Anne’s County – Post 278 established the Robert E. McCauley Scholarship in 2003 to provide scholarships to Chesapeake College student athletes. The Legion has also financially supported other Athletic Department activities, including the baseball team’s trip to the 2005 NJCAA Division II World Series as the Northeast District champion.

Gemignani said the fitness center donation follows in that same pattern.

"This fitness center will be great," said Gemignani, who noted the importance of its availability for students, faculty, and staff, along with community members who will be eligible to use the facilities when they are registered for a continuing education fitness course. "We’re hoping some of our servicemen and women coming home from Iraq and Afghanistan will make use of the new center."

Chesapeake College Athletic Director Frank Szymanski said Post 278 "has been one of our most consistent and loyal financial supporters during my nine years at the college."

"There are many athletic initiatives that would have been harder to undertake without Post 278’s backing," said Szymanski, noting the Post’s donation to cover expenses associated with the 2005 World Series as one recent example.

The college has already raised over $50,000 in contributions toward the nearly $90,000 in equipment that has been ordered for the new center. The new center is part of a major renovation of the inner core of the Physical Education Building, which is over 30 years old.

The Julia T. Burleigh Philanthropic Fund donated $25,000 as the lead donor, giving the Fund naming rights for the Center. The Burleigh Fund, represented by Director Jim Barton, directed that the center be named for Dr. Stuart M. Bounds, who retired in June after 11 years as the college’s fourth president.

Individuals or organizations interested in contributing to the Chesapeake College Fitness Center Fundraising Campaign may contact Campaign Chair Rich Midcap ( or 410-827-5858).

American Legion Post 278 recently donated $10,000 to help equip Chesapeake College’s new fitness center. Pictured in the front row, left to right, are: Richard Midcap, Chesapeake College vice president for student success; Ed Baker, Chesapeake College professor of kinesiology; Barbara Viniar, Chesapeake College president; Joe Griscom, Post 278 Commander; Hugo Gemignani, Post 278 judge advocate; and Frank Simoni, Post 278 2nd vice commander. In the back row, left to right, are: Frank Szymanski, Chesapeake College athletics director, James Taylor, Post 278 1st vice commander; and Buck Ferrin, Post 278 financial officer.
Photo by Marcie Molloy

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