As retired teachers, Edward ’58 ’63 and Judith ’65 Stentaford understand the importance of education. As art collectors and music lovers, they also understand the vital role the arts play in society and in the cultural development of students.
Combining their passions, the Stentafords plan to bequeath their entire estate – estimated at $1 million – to benefit the School of Fine Arts at UConn.
“A work of art lasts forever. It outlasts any human being,” says Mr. Stentaford. “That’s why I’m so excited to be a benefactor of the arts.”
Mr. Stentaford earned a bachelor’s degree in economics and mathematics and a master’s degree in visual media from UConn. Mrs. Stentaford earned a master’s degree in education from UConn. Both taught in the public school system in East Hartford, Mr. Stentaford’s hometown. Later he also taught in the Agawam, Mass., public school system.
“Judy and I came from humble backgrounds,” he says. “We were both Depression babies, and our parents had nothing. We were the only ones in our families to get a college education. The lives we lead today would not have been possible without the strong foundation that we received at the University of Connecticut.”
Alongside collected artwork and memorabilia from their extensive travels, the Stentafords’ home is decorated with Husky championship pennants. Their legacy of support for the arts, education, and UConn will be carried on through their new fund. Mr. Stentaford notes that with today’s economic turmoil, it’s more critical than ever to support the arts and arts education.
“The arts must be maintained, because that’s what keeps the world together,” he explains.
The Stentafords’ unrestricted gift will be used at the dean’s discretion to support areas of greatest need in the School of Fine Arts.
“The School of Fine Arts is deeply indebted to Edward and Judith Stentaford for their unrestricted gift,” says David Woods, dean of fine arts. “Through this gift, the Stentafords have enabled the School of Fine Arts in the future to explore a number of positive and important projects that will enhance and expand the artistic education of UConn students. We are grateful to the Stentafords for their belief in the arts and their generosity.”
For more information about supporting the School of Fine Arts, please contact the UConn Foundation’s development department.