Lake Forest Academy is embarking on an ambitious capital project that will see a major expansion of the Academy’s indoor athletic facilities. This 45,000-square-foot Athletic Center expansion to the west of Crown Fitness & Wellness Center will double the indoor space for athletics, fitness, and recreation.
To discuss naming opportunities, please contact one of our Advancement Officers.
Hear from LFA alumni, students, faculty, and coaches, who share in their own words what athletics means to them and how the Athletic Center Expansion will benefit future generations of Caxys.
Goals for the Athletic Center Expansion
Support the Academy’s commitment to wellness opportunities to ensure the educational and personal success of students, faculty, and staff.
Provide LFA’s 37 athletic teams with more functional and efficient indoor space for practice, training, and competition and recreational space for the entire LFA community.
Deliver on the promise of a Top 20 college-preparatory boarding school experience with excellence in academics, arts, and athletics.
For the past three years, my time as a student-athlete at LFA has been an experience that has been beyond belief. I have been incredibly grateful to have been a part of an amazing athletic program that grows young adults into leaders. Not only have I developed my athletic skills, but my leadership, sportsmanship, and discipline every time I stepped on a court or field. The athletic department has been a special place for the students at LFA. I am honored to have been a part of this incredible community.Tatum Young ’23varsity basketball, varsity volleyball
We cannot underestimate the value of exercise for not only our physical health but also our mental health. The biochemical changes that happen inside the brain during exercise can help empower a growth mindset and increase confidence, focus, problem-solving skills, and resilience. Creating the habit of exercise will help students now and throughout their adulthood.Dr. Elizabeth Lombardo P’22, ’24Clinical Psychologist and Speaker
Playing basketball at LFA was a pivotal experience in my life. Managing the schedule of training, games, and school taught me about balance. Overcoming injuries taught me about perseverance. Being a captain taught me about servant leadership. Tight games taught me about managing pressure. Tough games taught me humility. And trying to play defense taught me about defeat (you think I'm joking, but ask my coach and he'd tell you that I would struggle to guard a chair).
Most importantly basketball gave me a family with whom I am still close today. When starting at LFA, you can feel far from home. Open gyms on Friday nights and pickup games on the weekend introduced me to so many people when I was new. Eventually, my teammates became my roommates, next-door-neighbors, and best friends.
My coach, Matt Vaughn, changed my life in more ways than one. Beyond his tutelage of the game (and the life lessons he often "borrowed" from Hoosiers), he was a confidante, a mentor, and a big brother. He gave me tough love when I got in trouble at school, was honest with me about where I could improve as a player, and was the first to give me a friendly ribbing when I took myself too seriously. There was no adult I trusted more at school, and no one I wanted to make prouder.
Basketball introduced me to the people who helped me navigate my adolescence. And I am certainly not alone. High school athletics, in all its forms, is a vital outlet at a crucial time in life. The people it brings you in contact with will shape your future. Having a world-class facility means even more opportunities for world-class experiences.Max Bernstein ’04McKinsey & Company
former captain, LFA varsity basketball
Sports are a major part of our community’s strong spirit. In sports, we either win, lose, or tie. During a game, all of us desperately want the same thing: a victory. This situation generates strong school spirit and a bond among community members.
Because LFA is very diverse, it’s normal that students have different opinions, hobbies, and goals. But when we play sports, we forget these differences; everyone works and has fun. Sports allow us to become good friends on and off the field/court/ice, and build up trust between teammates.Riko Kishitani ’23All-School President, 2022-23; varsity ice hockey, JV soccer
The new athletic facility on campus will be a game-changer for our students. Athletics plays a crucial role in their development, both mentally and physically, as numerous studies have shown. With the new facility, all students will have the opportunity to practice at the same time, eliminating the scheduling conflicts that often arise throughout the year, especially during the winter and spring seasons. This not only allows more people to attend evening games but raises student support at each game and boosts school spirit, while also making it easier for them to manage their schedule.Dieter Villegas ’18Mathematics Teacher, soccer coach
The Glore Gymnasium was named for my grandfather, Charles Foster Glore, by my grandmother, Ellen Hixon Glore. My grandfather was a longtime Board member at LFA and was committed to the school. It was an honor to have our family name on the gym. He would be proud to know that the strong tradition of athletics lives on at LFA. I hope the new athletics facility brings joy to the students and that they’ll take advantage of this new, modern addition. I’m proud to know the Glore Gym has served the LFA community so well for 70 years and will remain a place for students to play and practice indoors. I encourage all of the female students at LFA to learn what Title IX did for women and their involvement in sports. Maude Glore ’66Ferry Hall
The student-athlete life is no joke, but during my time at LFA, I’ve found that the skills I developed in basketball and track have translated into the classroom. My communication with classmates and teachers has been amplified due to my experience on LFA sports teams. The challenges Caxys face throughout our respective competition seasons build a family feeling among teammates, and as sports here have become a daily part of my life, I give my greatest gratitude to Athletics at LFA.Salajan English ’24varsity basketball, varsity track
The Athletic Center Expansion will optimize the chance for Lake Forest Academy students to be their best selves as both students and athletes. The new facility will allow our sports teams to practice right after school. This means they will get to dinner earlier, start studying earlier in the evening, and get enough sleep to greet each day with energy and optimism.
From the college counseling perspective, sports team membership is part of developing a well-rounded student, a characteristic that makes for a strong college applicant. It also provides opportunities for leadership and teaches time management and organizational skills, which are critical for success in college. For those students who plan to play at the collegiate level, the Athletic Center Expansion will be important in providing them with a high-caliber facility for training and competition. With this new athletic building, all of our facilities—academic, athletic, community—now reflect the present-day institutional strength of LFA. Andrew PoskaDean of College Counseling, prep hockey coach
Some of my best intangible skills were built from the foundation of golf and athletics. LFA expected the most out of students. Playing golf while juggling school taught me discipline and time management, which helped me when I played in college. Everyone within my LFA athletics experience helped support me and my goal to play D1 golf. My teammates helped me advance my game. Being able to compete against the boys, as there was no girls team at the time, helped me hit the ball farther and gain confidence at long-distance shots. I was able to have a leg up when making the transition to NCAA yardages. My teammates were always there for me in season as well as off season as practice partners. As an individual sport, it is so easy to get mentally frustrated, but my teammates kept my competitive edge intact.
Mr. Lewis was not only my golf coach but also my mentor and college counselor. I started my recruiting process early, during sophomore year, and looking at schools and choosing a program seemed daunting. He always believed in me and wanted the best for my future. I have never looked back at my decision to commit to Boston College, and I wouldn’t have been able to seamlessly make that decision without him.Katie Kim ’15Solutions Analyst, Roku,
former captain, LFA varsity golf
For me, the Athletic Center Expansion is all about giving the LFA community a place that they can always call home. This building will give students a place to grow athletically and socially while keeping physically fit. When they walk through those doors, they’ll be able to unwind and just have fun. It’s about providing a better way of life for the students. The new space will give us the ability to hold numerous practices at the same time; our students can then go to dinner and have time to connect with their friends before study hours. In addition, our student-athletes will be able to train all year and have extra time to work on their craft and become stronger in their sport.
The new facility will also allow coaches to get practices done on schedule and have more time to spend with family and friends. Lastly, I want to make sure all alumni know that this is their home. The LFA athletic spaces will always be a place for them to be proud of, a place they can always use, and a place where, when they look around, they know they helped lay the foundation for today’s students. I hope everyone will have the opportunity to see this new facility and appreciate the positive impact it will have on campus life for every student. Darrin Madeley P’11, ’14Athletic Director, Director of Summer Programs,
prep hockey head coach, varsity girls softball head coach
Being on a team at LFA exponentially enhanced my Academy experience. I have fond memories of going from complete strangers on day one, to being really close with my fellow teammates in a short matter of time. This bond continued throughout my time at LFA. Joining different teams in a wide range of sports allowed me to meet classmates of all ages. I was able to learn from the experiences and teachings of the grades above and passed down valuable tips to the ones below.
Through basketball tournaments over Thanksgiving, I was fortunate, as a boarder, to celebrate the holiday with my teammates and their families. This remains a special memory to this day. Experiences like this contribute to why LFA is such a special place, as friendships extend beyond campus. I have LFA sports to thank for that.Cedric Chong ’19University of Auckland,
former captain, LFA varsity basketball and track; football player
Coaching at a small school like LFA should always be student centered. I strongly believe that if you focus on building the character and resilience of the player first, everything else will fall in line. Sports are the center of what creates leaders in life. My coaching philosophy goes past teaching a sport but how can these skills translate into real life.Tanika GolotaAthletic Coordinator, girls basketball coach