About the Sponsors

Frank and Jane Batten have given generously to Culver Academies. With their recent $20 million gift to Culver's endowment, they have donated more than $42 million to the By Example Campaign for Culver, and more than $54 million in total. In addition, beginning in 1999, the endowed Batten Scholars Program provides six freshman and/or first-year sophomore students with a full-tuition, merit scholarship that includes room and board, required fees, uniforms, and books. The scholarship is renewable annually.

Supporting higher education, the Battens have donated $32 million to the Harvard Business School, $60 million to the Darden Graduate School of Business in Virginia, and $100 million to the University of Virginia (the largest gift in the school’s history) to establish the Frank Batten School of Leadership and Public Policy.

A graduate of Culver Military Academy, Frank Batten CMA ‘45 is a communications entrepreneur who has made a mark in many ways. Under his leadership as a publisher, in 1960 The Virginian-Pilot newspaper received a Pulitzer Prize for articles championing desegregation. The Virginian-Pilot and The Ledger-Star in Norfolk, Virginia were the foundation of Landmark Communications, the privately-held media company that he grew by acquiring additional newspapers, radio stations, and television stations, as well as by founding a new cable station -- The Weather Channel -- the 24-hour cable weather station launched in 1982. He also served as chairman of the Associated Press from 1982 to 1987.

Frank Batten attended Culver Naval School in 1940. He served on the Culver Summer Schools & Camps staff in 1944. As a cadet at Culver Military Academy in the 1940s, Frank earned Gold and Silver A’s, won varsity letters in track and cross-country, and was a member of the Honor Guard. He rose from private to captain and commanded Company C as a first-classman. Graduating in the final months of World War II, he joined the Merchant Marine and was commissioned in late 1945 as a Naval officer.

Batten was honored as Culver’s 17th Man of the Year in 1984. He received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Virginia in 1950 and his MBA from Harvard in 1952.

Frank Batten passed away September 10, 2009, in Norfolk, VA. He is survived by his wife, Jane, and their three children: Frank, Mary, and Dorothy.

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