February 5, 2013
Morristown High School has a rich tradition of excellence. The school was founded in 1869 and it played its first football game in 1901. The Poet Joyce Kilmer taught at the school in the early 1900’s, Gene Shalit attended in the 1940’s and Craig Newmark, founder of Craig’s List, graduated from the school in 1971. Morristown’s graduates are consistently admitted to some of the finest colleges in the nation. The composition of the 1,486 students reflects the changing demographics of Morristown, as 22% of the student body is now Hispanic and 16% are African-American.
In 2006, a group of community leaders, led by Stephen Wiley, Mike Barry, Jay Delaney, Steve DeLargy, Jim McCreedy and James Remler, created the Team Up for Turf Committee to restore the Morristown High School athletic field. The argument for the restoration was simple: For Morristown High School to continue to attract the best students and to continue to serve as a model of diversity and excellence, it needs to have facilities that are comparable, if not better, than the nearby private and parochial schools. The goal for the campaign was $936,000, which included the field, extra zones, a track and lighting. The Morris County Community Foundation grant committee committed $36,000 to the major gift portion of the campaign using funds from the Henrietta McPherson Fund. Two CFNJ donors who are leaders in the Morristown community, Stu and Jan Sendell, made a grant of $60,000 from their family’s donor advised fund at CFNJ.
Other donors to the effort include the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation, the New York Jets, the NFL Youth Football Fund, hundreds of individual donors and the Local Initiatives Support Foundation.
Once the project was fully funded, the ground-breaking for the new field was held in January 2010. The project has moved along on schedule, and the field will be filled with players, joggers, and fans in August 2010.
Members of the Morris County Committee: Bill Byrnes, Bonnie Gardner, Jim Hunt, Jim Porter, Carole Rogers, and Stu Sendell