Published DateTILTON — J. Christopher Burch, class of 1972, has donated $1.3 million to Tilton School that will be used for the construction of an artificial turn athletic field.
The announcement of the single largest gift ever received by the private preparatory school was made by Head of School Peter Saliba at an assembly on Friday.
"We're lucky today to have a visitor to campus, Mr. Chris Burch, class of 1972," Saliba said upon welcoming Burch to the stage for the announcement. "He's been a great alumnus to the school. I am pleased to announce that Mr. J. Christopher Burch has given us the largest gift in the
history of the school."
A four-year student from Pennsylvania, Burch was active on the soccer, hockey, skiing and tennis teams; as a member of the chess and ping pong clubs, and as a writer for The Tiltonian, the school newspaper. He also served on the Board of Trustees from 1982-1985.
"That's what this school is about. Where you can go over to that (Head's) house, and you feel part of a family. And when you get older, you want to feel part of a family," Burch said during his address to the Chapel audience, which included students, faculty, and board members. "I am excited to be part of Tilton School, I'm excited to be part of the community, a group of students that are remarkable. I want you guys to remember this moment."
"I want to let you know this is one of the happiest days of my life," Burch said in closing.
Burch is most well known for his role in the business world. In his 30-plus years as an entrepreneur, he has guided the rise of more than 50 companies and has redefined innovation, essentially cornering the market in the retail and lifestyle brand industries. He is the founder and CEO of Burch Creative Capital, a firm with offices in New York City and Shanghai, China, the co-founder of Tory Burch LLC, and the founder of C. Wonder.
This gift follows Saliba's March announcement that Tilton School had learned it was the recipient of a $500,000 bequest from Arthur Sweatt (class of 1949) which will be put toward campus
enhancements and endowment.
Photo caption: Head of School Peter Saliba (left) with Chris Burch, who announced on Friday that he has donated $1.3 million to Tilton School for the construction for a turf field. (Courtesy photo)