SUNY Canton has named one of its newest classrooms in honor of Canton’s Coakley family.
William J. (Bill) and Carol M. Coakley, Carol J. and Ronald J. Spadaccini, and Thomas F. (Tom) and Nellie E. Coakley, the owners of Coakley Carpet One Ace Hardware in Canton, previously made a donation to the SUNY Canton Foundation for the college’s Roos House Convocation, Athletic and Recreation Center. The family’s gift secured the right to name the Coakley Family Student-Athlete Study and Classroom.
“The Coakleys understand the connection between athletic and academic success,” said SUNY Canton President Zvi Szafran. “Athletics build teamwork and leadership skills. The continuous practice and focus that students need for athletic success mirrors the set of skills that they need for academic success.”
New steel signage has been added to the exterior of the room and a ceremonial plaque with a photo of the family has been hung to denote their charitable contribution.
“The relationship between athletics and academics has been absolutely crucial to the success of our family,” Tom Coakley said. “For us, it was a natural fit to add our family name to a room that contributes to the academic success of student-athletes at SUNY Canton.”
The Coakleys’ ties to the College span over several decades. Tom, Bill and Carol’s father, Robert J. Coakley filled in as a construction instructor in SUNY Canton’s earlier days. Bill assisted the men’s ice hockey team for 15 years alongside Head Coach Terry Martin, during which time the team won numerous NJCAA Championships. Tom has been a member of the College Foundation Board of Directors since 1981, is a member of the Finance and Investment Committee, and serves with his wife, Nellie, on the Service Members Advisory Board.
“The college’s commitment to the community of Canton is evident through its continual push for growth,” Bill Coakley said. “The growth of the college brings new opportunities and revenue to the North Country.”
The family was the recipient of the Canton College Foundation’s Community Leadership Award in 2008, honoring their leadership and commitment to the North Country community. The Coakleys won both the Small Business Administration’s (SBA) Syracuse District Family Owned Business of the Year award in 2011. Bill Coakley was inducted into SUNY Canton’s college-wide hall of fame in 2013.
About SUNY Canton
SUNY Canton is Northern New York’s premier college for career-driven bachelor’s degrees, associate degrees and certificate programs. The college delivers quality hands-on programs in engineering technology, health, management and public service. Faculty members are noted for their professional real-world experience in addition to outstanding academic credentials. SUNY Canton OnLine offers hundreds of flexible and convenient courses as well as eight exclusively online bachelor’s degrees. The college’s 14 athletic teams compete as provisional members of the NCAA Division III and the USCAA.