Ways To Give: What Other Alums Are Saying

Monthly Gifts of gratitude

Andrew Cotter ’99


Andrew Cotter ’99 and Emily Price

Andrew Cotter ’99 only attended St. Johnsbury Academy his senior year, but that year was enough to make a lasting impression. His family, especially his grandfather, always wanted him to attend SJA. Although Andrew was living overseas at the time, everything fell into place and before you knew it, he was enrolled as a Hilltopper. 


He recalls St. Johnsbury Academy as being different than anywhere else he had lived, “There is something about the air and mountains in St. Johnsbury. It is beautiful, but also provides perspective. It made me realize that most of my life has been spent in a “paved paradise” with all its trappings, and it simply didn’t need to be that way. That understanding has guided so many of my decisions over the last 25 years in subtle but incalculable ways.”


Having the opportunity to live in historic Brantview and walk the amazing campus daily, he touts the unique and transformative experience, “SJA was the first place that I did not feel crushed by the social pressures of high school. It allowed me to start figuring out who I am and what kinds of people I want to surround myself with. This process would easily take another decade, but I feel like it started at St. Johnsbury and altered my trajectory ever since.”


After SJA, Andrew attended UNC Chapel Hill, and upon graduation, he started a career in energy. He managed a number of research programs and now manages the power supply for a small utility in Virginia. He and his wife, Emily, are also working towards moving abroad in the next few years.


Andrew has supported St. Johnsbury Academy for at least a decade now and recently decided to donate through the recurring gift option.


Andrew described why this method works best for him and his wife, “Like many people, we used to do our annual donations at the end of the year. While I appreciate that I am able to give to charities at all, the lump donations can still hurt a bit, especially right after the holidays. We decided to spread out our donation through a monthly gift that is automatically charged to my credit card. This makes it simpler to manage financially and is just an easier way to give.”


Andrew also recognizes the benefit of this option for the school, “I believe the consistent donations also facilitate the planning and management of the school’s finances, and I am happy to help in that way, too. SJA is an organization driven by honest and evident principles. I know my donations will be used properly, in a transparent manner, and in support of the Academy’s mission.”


When asked why he gives to St. Johnsbury Academy, Andrew said, “I am just thankful that a place like SJA exists. It is unique, special, and worth protecting. I want others to be able to experience it as well.”


If you are interested in learning more about the recurring gift program, please contact Director of Development, Brynn Reynolds Evans ’98, by phone at (802) 751-2129 or by email at Brynn.evans@stjacademy.org