UConn football has received a $1 million donation to renovate and upgrade the Burton Family Football Complex and Mark K. Shenkman Training Center, the school announced.
The donation was made by Chris Fraser, a 1980 graduate of UConn who served as the CEO of KMG Chemicals from Sep. 2013-Nov. 2018, when the company was bought by Cabot Microelectronics for $1.6 billion. Now, Fraser is retired but is still an operating partner at Advent International Corporation, where he’s been involved since 2011.
Since opening in 2006, there haven’t been significant changes to Burton and Shenkman. The facility needs new carpeting, technology, weight room equipment, lockers and projectors, which comes at an estimated cost of $2 million.
With Fraser’s donation covering half that expense, smaller donations will be used to find the other million. Edsall said that for every $250,000 raised, he was donate 10 percent, or $25,000. He could ultimately donate $100,000. Edsall hoped former players will give back to the program with donations as well.
Fraser helped with the logistical part of the fundraising effort to build Burton and Shenkman along with smaller donations, but decided it was time to become financially invested.
“The direction and the future of UConn football under Coach Edsall’s leadership is exciting,” Fraser said in the release. “Randy is an outstanding coach and a great friend who does things the right way. His passion for excellence, his commitment, and his dedication to the student-athletes and their development to be winners on the field, in the classroom and in life is admirable. I am proud to be associated with the football program and pleased to support their success.”
Fraser is one of ~20 donations of $1 million or more to UConn athletics, known as a “Principle Level” donation. The hope is it will help get the Huskies’ football program back on track.
“Chris has been a great friend and sounding board to me since 1999 and I’ve been very appreciative of our friendship and his insight to many different issues that go with being a Head Coach/CEO of an FBS Football program,” Edsall said.