Smart Kids Dinner at Norwich Honors 263
Expect Challenge and Achieve Distinction rang true on the evening of February 9th in
Plumley Armory when 263 freshman Cadets were honored at the annual Academic Leadership Dinner or what is more commonly referred to as the “Smart Kids Dinner” hosted by Jack Abare, Norwich Class of 1957.
These Cadets having spent most of their first year dealing with the everyday challenges’ and
rigors of life in the Corps of Cadets were all able to maintain a 3.0 or higher Grade Point Average (GPA). Considering their number makes up 48 per cent of the freshmen Cadet class, that is quite an achievement.
The dinner of champagne chicken and baron of beef was enjoyed by all of the cadets as
well as many guests of Mr. Abare from the Norwich and Northfield community. The Singing Trooper, Daniel Clark provided upbeat and patriotic entertainment for the group which ended with his famed rendition of God Bless America which he sang in Fenway Park when the Redsoxs were in the Workd Series. He was treated to a standing ovation at the end of his performance.
This was the 13th year Jack has sponsored the dinner to honor the freshmen Cadet’s academic achievements. While himself a Cadet, Jack was on the Drill, Football, Basketball and Baseball Teams.
Mr. Abare said that he issued a challenge to the rooks at the beginning of the year and he
doesn’t know whether his challenge was pivotal in so many reaching the goal of making such
a high grade point average or whether they were challenged on their own to make it but he is
proud that so many have. He said that this is the highest number of rooks who have made the grade in any year since he’s been hosting the dinners.
Upon graduating from Norwich in 1957 Jack attended the US Army’s Armor school at Fort
Knox. He would stay in the military and resign after nine years as a Captain in the Reserves. In 1964 he started his first business and today employees over 125 people.
As an active member of Norwich University he has served as the Chair of the Alumni Association, President of the Board of Fellows and a member of the Board of Trustee’s. His generosity can be seen in the Wise Campus Center where the Freshman Dining Hall is named after Jack Abare. He has received the Outstanding Alumnus Award and is a member
of the Partridge Society for his giving for which he has earned the Partridge Society Medallion the 2nd highest award at Norwich.
He and his wife Lona have been married for 60 years and have four sons. Like those Cadets
being recognized at the dinner Jack Abare has challenged himself and without a doubt has
achieved distinction. Congratulations to the Cadets and a heartfelt thanks to Mr. Jack Abare.