Francisco Lindor ('11) Donates toward new Middle School Building
Francisco Lindor, Superstar Shortstop with the New York Mets, celebrated the ribbon cutting for the grand opening of the new Middle School building on the Montverde Academy campus today. Lindor was the lead donor in MVA’s Time to Lead capital campaign, making a $1 million gift toward the construction of a state-of-the-art building, named Lindor Hall, to serve 203 middle school students. He also established the Francisco Lindor Scholarship Fund to provide selected current and prospective students with financial assistance to attend the Academy.
Lindor arrived at Montverde Academy from Puerto Rico as an eighth-grade student with limited English language skills. Through serious focus and a strong work ethic that are his hallmark, combined with the dedication, support and guidance of the Academy’s faculty, staff and administration, he grew into an accomplished student and stellar baseball player. Drafted eighth overall in the 2011 MLB draft, Lindor played for the Cleveland Indians earning a Platinum Glove, two Gold Gloves and two Silver Slugger Awards while also being selected to the American League All-Star team four times. He was traded to the NY Mets on January 7, 2021.
“Montverde Academy played an important role in my life and is a special place for me,” said Lindor. “By leaving Puerto Rico and coming to the Academy, I definitely grew up and became a man through my experience here. The education I received and the confidence, work ethic and character I developed and strengthened here as a student, helped shape me. I’m thankful for the blessings the Lord has bestowed on my family and me. I’m grateful to have the opportunity to pay it forward. I know Middle School students and teachers will benefit from this new building, and I hope this gift helps provide the same strong foundation for future students that it provided for me.”
The new two-story Middle School building, named Lindor Hall, has 38,894 square-feet of academic space with 14 classrooms, three innovative science laboratories, a technology laboratory, conference room, study hall, teacher’s lounge, and administrative space. An attached 12,711 square-foot gymnasium has an open floor plan and stage to provide dedicated space for physical education classes, sporting events and general activities, such as assemblies, dances and robotics competitions.
“Francisco’s gifts are of seismic importance to Montverde Academy,” said Dr. Kasey C. Kesselring, Montverde Academy Head of School. “Francisco Lindor made a mark on Montverde Academy as a student. He was special on the baseball field and in our community, with a tremendous work ethic, an infectious smile and grace towards others that we see continuing in his professional life. His donation sends a strong message to everyone that academics will always come first. Education is lifelong, and a sports career has an expiration date. This gift from Francisco is not surprising because he has always been selfless and humble. He sees the value of what the Academy instilled in him and is generously giving for a lasting impact on others.”
Lindor credits the diversity, structure and academic programs MVA provided as significant influences in his development of leadership and decision-making skills. With this foundation, he continues to build a successful professional career in the MLB. “As a student, I received a lot of help and would not be where I am today without it. I want to help others, to let them know that they have to focus on their school work first and then practicing a sport is second. When you work hard, anything is possible.”
With the Francisco Lindor Scholarship Fund, he wants to help students pursue the opportunity for a college preparatory education. “I wanted to offer the scholarship to help those who are like I was, pursuing a dream while gaining a solid foundation in academics. I hope that students who receive the scholarship and become part of the MVA and Lindor family see me as a close mentor and friend who will always be here to encourage them,” said Lindor.
“Given the challenging time our nation faces, we deeply appreciate Mr. Lindor’s very generous gift, and are grateful for his continuous efforts as a tremendous role model for tomorrow’s leaders. Education is the most important foundation, and Lindor Hall is a testament to that. We have had and continue to have amazing athletes who are an important part of our community, but all of our students know that the top priority will always be the work in the classroom,” said Dr. Kesselring.