Notre Dame secures $1 million gift for ball fields

Generous donation to support extensive renovations to the school’s baseball and softball facilities.

PONTIAC, Mich. — Notre Dame Preparatory School and Marist Academy announced today that it has secured a $1 million gift from an anonymous donor to support an extensive renovation of the school’s softball and baseball fields. The donation represents the largest designated gift to the school in its 23-year history.

"This unbelievably generous gift to Notre Dame and its athletic department ensures that our softball and baseball complex will provide the best possible environment for our student-athlete ballplayers,” said Betty Wroubel, Notre Dame’s athletic director, assistant principal and head softball coach. “Coupled with the recent upgrades to our stadium, we believe we will have one of the finest high school athletic facilities in southeast Michigan.“

According to Wroubel, the gift will make possible the installation of field turf on both the infield and outfield of the softball and baseball fields, which are located on the northeast section of the Notre Dame campus in Pontiac. In addition, both backstops and the softball dugouts will be completely replaced and a permanent press box will be built at the baseball field.

Other projects in the renovation plan include completely new bullpens and batting cages for both softball and baseball, baseball dugout upgrades and an improved drainage system throughout the complex.

Jason Gendreau, who recently was hired as the head baseball coach at Notre Dame, is beyond excited about the news.

“We are so grateful for this unselfish and thoughtful gift,” he said. “I already was looking very much forward to my first season leading the Irish baseball program. This takes my excitement quotient to a completely different level.” 

Gendreau said the renovations are expected to be completed before baseball and softball seasons begin in the spring of 2018.

“We are humbled and grateful for the tremendous generosity of the donor funding the renovation of our baseball and softball diamonds,” said Notre Dame’s Director of Advancement Gregory Simon. “The completion of this project is a testament to the impact of the Notre Dame experience. We have an extraordinary donor who's passion and generosity lined up with a need on campus. But more than that, the gift is a clear sign of the donor's confidence, dedication and belief in our mission.”

Notre Dame Head of School Andy Guest said that benefactors like the one behind this latest gift are truly representative of what Notre Dame is all about.

"We are very fortunate to have such a generous friend who believes so deeply in the value of the mission of our school,” he said. “On top of that, our donor’s wish to remain anonymous speaks to our Marist charism, which calls on people to do good for others but remain ‘hidden and unknown’ leaders within the school community.” 

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About Notre Dame Preparatory School and Marist Academy
Notre Dame Preparatory School and Marist Academy is a private, Catholic, independent, coeducational day school located in Oakland County. The school's upper division enrolls students in grades nine through twelve and has been named one of the nation's best 50 Catholic high schools (Acton Institute) four times since 2005. Notre Dame's middle and lower divisions enroll students in jr. kindergarten through grade eight. All three divisions are International Baccalaureate "World Schools." NDPMA is conducted by the Marist Fathers and Brothers and is accredited by the Independent Schools Association of the Central States and the North Central Association Commission on Accreditation and School Improvement. For more on Notre Dame Preparatory School and Marist Academy, visit the school's home page at