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What is the Constantine S. Macricostas Entrepreneurial Endowment Fund?
Funding for the Entrepreneurial Endowment is provided by a grant from the foundation of Brookfield industrialist and philanthropist Constantine “Deno” Macricostas and his wife Marie.
“We believe in education, and we believe in Western Connecticut State University,” say Deno and Marie Macricostas. But their actions speak even louder than their words.
The Macricostases have turned their beliefs into action that provides opportunity for WCSU’s students.
Deno Macricostas, founder and chairman of Brookfield-based Photronics Inc., has been a member of the WCSU Foundation Inc. board for about 20 years, serving as an ambassador to expand awareness and support of the university.
Through their Macricostas Family Foundation, the couple pledged $1.1 million to the university in 2003, at that time the largest gift in WCSU’s history. Their generosity is funding a number of initiatives on campus, and it comes in addition to their backing of several community-based programs to offer educational opportunity.
This Entrepreneurial Endowment sets money aside for entrepreneurial activities, sponsored lectures and, in 2008, was the first time that the couple’s foundation honored a local entrepreneur through the Entrepreneur of the Year award.
Lucie Voves, president of Church Hill Classics, a company that creates custom frames, became the first Macricostas Family Foundation Entrepreneur of the Year. Subsequent winners of this award include Joe Platano, CEO Westco Scientific Instruments; Paul Dinto of Paul Dinto Electrical Contractors; John Murphy, CEO Western CT Health Network; Ray Boa, owner A&J Construction and the 2013 award winner Jim Kennedy, CEO The Network Support Company.
From left to right: WCSU President James W. Schmotter, Photronics Founder Constantine S. Macricostas, award recipient CEO Jim Kennedy of The Network Support Company, Danbury Mayor Mark D. Boughton, Acting Dean of the Ancell School of Business Jim Donegan.
The 2014 Entrepreneur of the Year award winners were John Royce and Thomas Montague, who jointly founded and operate the catering business that provides wedding venues at The Fox Hill Inn and The Candlewood Inn, both in Brookfield, and The Waterview in Monroe and The Riverview in Simsbury.
In 2015 the recipient was Peter D’Amico of SCB International. Austin McChord of Datto was rewarded with the honor in 2016.
Constantine (Deno) S. Macricostas founded Photronics, Inc. in 1969. As Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Mr. Macricostas has provided the vision and leadership which has enabled Photronics to become the largest independent supplier of photomasks in the world.
After coming to the U.S. in 1954, attending college and serving in the U.S. Army, Mr. Macricostas began his career in 1960 as a design engineer with National Semiconductor Corporation. From 1965 to 1969, he worked as an engineering manager for Qualitron Corporation, where he designed early photomask manufacturing equipment for the semiconductor industry.
Over the years, Mr. Macricostas has received many awards from business groups, including the National Blue Chip Award, the High Tech Entrepreneur of the Year, the Eli Whitney Award for Excellence in Small Business Management and the prestigious Entrepreneurial Success Award from the Small Business Administration. Listed in Who’s Who in American Business, he has been recognized by President Clinton and the executives of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.
Thanks to the generosity of this local entrepreneur and business owner, the Constantine S. Macricostas Entrepreneurial Endowment Fund was created to support entrepreneurial research projects and activities affiliated with the WCSU Ancell School of Business.
The fund is meant to support programs and events that benefit WCSU students, the greater Danbury community, and, of course, the entrepreneur.
So, if you’ve ever wanted to gain first hand experience in the entrepreneurial process, or learn more about how businesses get funded and organized for success, this is for you!
Go to About the Program to participate.