Well-dressed dignitaries took turns at the microphone to recap the years-long effort to build an athletic field at the Boys and Girls Club of Worcester. The children in the audience listened patiently to the speeches, but their thoughts were elsewhere. When the ceremony concluded, they sprinted onto the new field to do what kids do — toss footballs, kick soccer balls, and race each other to prove who was fastest.
The children were soon joined on the field by the men in suits and women in heels who seized the opportunity for a few minutes of play during the workday. Among those booting a soccer ball was David Angel, a devout fan of the Chelsea Football Club.
The October 13, 2016, the opening of the $3.1 million field, funded by Clark to serve both the neighborhood and the University, represented one element of the decades-long partnership between Clark and city, state, and federal entities to stabilize a once-ailing area through housing, economic, and education opportunities. Clark has invested financial resources and intellectual capital, and mobilized the efforts of students, faculty, and staff across a spectrum of initiatives — a commitment spanning the presidencies of Richard Traina, John Bassett, and David Angel.
“The community is never just an afterthought with President Angel,” says Boys and Girls Club Director Liz Hamilton, who still delights in watching neighborhood kids play on the pristine field where an abandoned factory once stood. “Clark has proven time and again that they want the community to be healthy in every way — physically, economically, socially. It’s an impressive commitment.”
Read more about David Angel’s Clark legacy: