YALE CLUB HISTORY

According to fading memories, our Club started as the Yale Club of Naples in 1966. The small group of founding members, including Fred Farnsworth '24S, Sol Coolidge '24 and  Archie Mudge '23, met regularly in private homes in Port Royal and elected Edward Jones '23 as the first president. Following is a complete list of presidents to date: 

YALE CLUB OF SOUTHWEST FLORIDA PRESIDENTS

Edward D. Jones '23 ............................................................... 1966-1971 

Alfred L. Ferguson, Jr. '26 ..................................................... 1972-1979 

Rev. Dr. Richard M. Mapes '49, '52BD .............................. 1980-1986 

Frederick D. Houghton '36 .............................................................. 1987 

Rev. Dr. Richard M. Mapes '49, '52BD ........................................ 1988 

Robert W. Hattemer '53E ............................................................... 1989 

Robert C. Bennett '44 .......................................................... 1990-1992 

Malvin F. White '39MD .................................................................. 1993 

S. Kenneth Bruce '53E ................ .................................................... 1994 

Arnold Garfinkel '62MA ...................................................... 1995-1996 

Richard T. Bennett '52 ................................................................... 1997 

W. Terrell Upson '60 ............................................................ 1998-1999 

Robert E. Wenzel '53E ......................................................... 2000-2001 

Torrey N. Foster '56 ............................................................... 2002-2003 

Thomas B. Wheeler '58 ........................................................ 2004-2005 

Samuel P. Cooley '53 ............................................................. 2006-2007 

Donald R. Williams '53 .......................................................... 2008-2009 

William R. Carpenter '54 ........ ............................................... 2010-2011 

Alan M. Horton '65 .............................................................. 2012-2013 

John A. Sanders, Jr. '87 .. ....................................................... 2013-2014 

Roy (Trey) D. Farmer III ’97 DIV.......................................... 2015-2016


Activities of the early Club included an annual visit by the then head football coach, Carm Cozza, who was with us each year in the spring from the very beginning through 1997. That year he introduced his successor, Jack Siedlecki who visited us annually until 2008. We welcomed Jack's successor, Tom Williams in 2011, and Williams successor, Tony Reno, in 2012. 

Over the years, the Club has held gatherings with singing groups such as the Yale Glee Club, the Whiffenpoofs, the Duke's Men, and the Spizzwinks. Yale professors and outside speakers from varied fields of interest have been with us over the years, as have Yale's previous president, Richard E. Levin ' 74 Ph.D, and current president Peter Salovey. 

Every November we meet with local Harvard Club members for a luncheon and TV broadcast of "The Game." For many years including the year he became CIA Director in the fall of 2004, the Club organized an annual luncheon for all Naples Ivy League clubs with our U.S. Representative in the House and a member of our Club, Hon. Porter Goss ' 60. In 2000 our Club initiated the first combined Harvard-Yale-Princeton gathering in our area, a financial outlook seminar and cocktail reception. These seminars continue today. Other H-Y-P events such as visits to art museums, theaters, political speaker events and concerts have also been organized. 

Frequent lectures from invited guests have allowed the club to build up our Endowment Fund, which finances Yale scholarships and summer internships at local nonprofit organizations for southwest Florida Yale students. In past years, we have enjoyed visits from Yale professors, the Yale athletic director, the former ambassador to the People's Republic of China, speakers from Christie's, Skinner's, and Sotheby's auction houses, with all proceeds contributing to our Endowment Fund. To commemorate Yale's Tercentennial in 200 I , we launched a special series of speaker receptions beginning in November 2000 featuring distinguished Yale graduates. The four separate events over four months generated the largest single contribution to our Endowment Fund to date. The Club's private tours of the world famous Collier auto collection in 2005 and 2007 also benefited the Fund. 

During most years we have eight or nine special events including our annual "Welcome Back" and "Holiday" parties. Along with these gatherings, monthly luncheons, most with speakers, are scheduled on the second Thursday of each month, from October through May. 

In 1993 we changed our legal name to "Yale Club of Southwest Florida," and in 1994 we produced the first Membership Directory, which is updated and distributed annually. In 1995 we elected and listed our first "Trustee Emeritus." We included an "In Memoriam" listing in the Directory in 1999 and subsequent years to honor the memory of past members who died the previous year. 

In 1998 we created a new position and the Trustees elected our first Vice President-Fort Myers Region in order to encourage increased involvement and membership from that area. At that time the new position of President-Elect was also created. 

Also in 1998 we acknowledged the electronic era by publishing member e-mail addresses, which have been included in our Directory since 1999. Then in 2002 we provided members and the world at large our very own Yale Club Website, www.yaleclubswfl.org. 

In 2001 the Club, a 50l(c)(3) organization since 1986 and thus exempt from federal taxes, applied for and received a sales tax exemption certificate from the State of Florida. We produced and distributed in 2002 our first Yale Club Guide To Planned Giving, which describes various ways members might donate to the Endowment Fund.