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$10 million gift to high school from Fred DiSanto and family
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$10 million gift to high school from Fred DiSanto and family

St. Ignatius High School of Cleveland announced it has received commitment for a $10 million gift toward the school’s new construction plans.

The donation is coming from 1980 graduate Fred DiSanto, former chairman of the Board of Regents, along with his wife, Brittan, as part of the school’s “Campaign for Vision ‘30,” which has a $100 million goal for the expansion and endowment.

The announcement said the the money, which represents one of the largest donations in the school’s history, will be used toward the construction of a three-story academic wing. Work is to begin “any day now,” according to a spokesman for the school.

The academic building will house new classrooms for history, social studies, English and a visual arts department with multiple art studios on the third floor, and a mezzanine loft space for advanced art students.

Turner Construction and Ozanne Construction have installed safety barriers and will focus next on interior and exterior demolition on the second floor of the main building at the former math wing.

In the coming days, the Carroll Gym and east wall of the library will be demolished while the smoke stack and garage/powerhouse will be taken down in May.

These steps are set to make way for the 55,000-square-foot addition, which would include the academic building along with an athletic center.

“Brittan and I are excited to be able to support that vision through the development of academic facilities and programs that will enhance the learning experience and opportunities for the students and provide a state-of-the art learning environment similar to what they will experience in college,” Fred DiSanto said in the prepared announcement.

Mr. DiSanto has worked at Ancora, a registered investment advisor, since June 2005, was named its Chief Executive Officer in January 2006, and was later named its Chairman in December 2014.

He was the former President and Chief Operating Officer of Maxus Investment Group (“Maxus”) from 1998 until 2000, during which time he was responsible for the marketing, sales and financial operations. When Maxus was sold to Fifth Third Bank in January 2001, and until June 2005, Mr. DiSanto served as Executive Vice President and Manager of the Fifth Third Bank’s Investment Advisors Division overseeing investment management, private banking and trust and banking services. Prior to Maxus, Mr. DiSanto was Managing Partner at Gelfand Partners Asset Management from 1991 until its merger with Maxus in 1997. He began his investment career in 1985 with McDonald Investments in Institutional Equity Sales.

Mr. DiSanto is currently on the boards of The Eastern Company (EML), Alithya Group Inc. (ALYA), and Regional Brands, Inc. (RGBD). He is also on the Executive Committee for the Board of Trustees at Case Western Reserve University. Fred is a former Chairman of the Board of Regents of St. Ignatius High School and former Chairman and current Trustee of the Greater Cleveland Sports Commission. He is a past Board Member of Lorain National Bank (LNBB) and Parkview Federal Savings Bank (PVFC).

Mr. DiSanto earned a Bachelor of Science degree in management science from Case Western Reserve University and a Master in Business Administration degree from Case Western Reserve University, Weatherhead School of Management (Cleveland, Ohio).

Photo: The DiSanto family donated $10 million toward St. Ignatius’ new additions, which include an academic building and athletic facility. (Left to Right: Fred DiSanto ’80 & Brittan DiSanto and TJ DiSanto ’06 & Lia DiSanto)

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