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SBU Athletics Announces the John Ramsey Leadership Society

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Jrls logoIn the continued effort to positively transform the lives of each student-athlete, Stony Brook University Athletics has unveiled the John Ramsey Leadership Society. The Ramsey Leadership Society recognizes the Seawolves’ most ardent and generous supporters, who go above and beyond in transforming the lives of Stony Brook student-athletes.

“The John Ramsey Leadership Society provides a tremendous opportunity to tell the Stony Brook Athletics story while engaging donors in a new way. As we strive to win CAA championships, we must always support our vision to positively transform the life of each student-athlete. Donors who are recognized as members of the John Ramsey Leadership Society will play a pivotal role in those efforts,” said Director of Athletics Shawn Heilbron.

The Ramsey Leadership Society is comprised of donors who make a major gift commitment to any departmental priority. Members are recognized in the Society for five years from the date of their commitment, and donors have the flexibility to choose to support any Sport-Specific Fund for Excellence, Seawolves United Unrestricted Giving, or any current department capital project, endowment, or scholarship need.

The Society is named after legendary Stony Brook coach and administrator, John Ramsey. Ramsey is a 1999 Stony Brook Athletics Hall of Fame inductee and is one of the most recognizable names in the history of Stony Brook Athletics. He has been an integral member of the Stony Brook family as he served the university for more than 35 years as both a coach and an administrator. Ramsey most notably founded the men’s soccer program and was Stony Brook’s first Division of Physical Education and Athletic Director.

“When Shawn called me earlier this spring to ask if I would approve of having my name linked to this new program, it took me a couple of seconds for his question to register, and in a few more seconds I was doing my best to tell Shawn I would be honored to have my name associated with the Leadership Giving Society. Shortly after our call ended, I remember saying, ‘Did that really just happen?'” said John Ramsey as he shared his reaction to being the namesake of the newly established leadership society.

As Stony Brook gears up for its newest venture in the CAA, the launch of the Ramsey Leadership Society is imperative, as support from its members will directly enhance the student-athlete experience and provide Stony Brook coaches and staff championship-level resources. Seawolves United has already secured more than 10 Ramsey Leadership Society members, who have committed over $300,000 to Stony Brook Athletics in the development of the Society.

RLS members will receive high-end, exclusive stewardship opportunities, including regular Zoom calls with Heilbron and recognition within the athletics facilities and at home football, basketball and lacrosse games. A Ramsey Leadership Society launch event is slated for later this year, celebrating its supporters, their generosity and the growth of Stony Brook Athletics.

“It became very clear years ago that acquiring additional resources was becoming necessary to improve the overall mission of the department,” said Ramsey. “I will never forget the time many years ago when one of our coaches walked up to me near the gym lobby with a check in hand from one of his former players and showed it to me. It was very generous, and I was immediately filled with a deep sense of gratitude. It is a wonderful thing to know that these alumni have been very successful in their careers and are willing to lend their support to a department that has been and will continue to be very important in the life of future Stony Brook student-athletes and the entire student body as well.”

For more information on the Ramsey Leadership Society, contact the Seawolves United team at (631) 632-7705, or by email at

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