The Ballentines have been affiliated closely with Brewster since 1990, when their daughter, Susan ‘94, started at the Academy; she was followed shortly thereafter by their son, Brian ‘97.
In 2006, Roy joined Brewster’s Board of Trustees and grew increasingly involved through various committees and special initiatives -- including chairing Brewster's Head of School Search Committee that was responsible for hiring Craig Gemmell in 2014. In 2015, Roy was named Chair of Brewster's Board of Trustees.
Roy and Sandy believe strongly in the power of a Brewster education. Roy recently commented:
“Brewster’s vision is to transform the way education is delivered and thereby transform communities and the lives of students. I believe that vision is powerful and appropriate for Brewster at this time. Brewster has evolved to the point where it now has the capacity, I believe, to change the way education is thought about and delivered more broadly.”
Roy and Sandy want to ensure that Brewster remains accessible to high potential students, regardless of their ability to pay. In 2016, they established the Ballentine Family Scholarship, a scholarship that is spent in full each year to open doors for current students who otherwise would not have the opportunity to attend.
They began by sponsoring one student’s education for four years:
“My wife, Sandy, and I have had the wonderful experience of providing four years of financial support to a current Brewster student, a young woman who is truly extraordinary and would never have had the opportunity to be educated here without our support. When she arrived on campus, we had the opportunity to get to know her and we've met regularly with her throughout her career here. She’s now in her final year, and she’s had an absolutely stellar career here so far. We expect her to finish strongly. She’s already landed a very interesting internship opportunity for this coming season, showing that she’s off to a great start in life. We have very high hopes for her. We are very proud to have been able to support her. And we are looking forward to staying in touch with her as she develops further."
Inspired by their experience with this student, Roy and Sandy expanded their scholarship to support three students each year. In addition, they’ve committed to an enduring gift through their estate plans to ensure that their scholarship support continues in perpetuity in order to open doors and change the trajectory of students for generations to come.
“It is lofty to think that Brewster can make changes to the way that education is delivered. But that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t be trying. And I believe we are now positioned to do just that.”
With supporters like Roy and Sandy, those lofty dreams -- of the Academy and of our students alike -- are proving to be attainable.