Ransom Everglades dedicated the Middle School conference room on January 29, 2019, in the memory of FJ Pollak, a devoted husband, father and philanthropist. Abigail Pollak made a special gift and selected the room near the entry of the Middle School so it would be readily visible to her children Jonathan Pollak ’23, Matthew Pollak ’25 and Abby Marie Pollak.
Chair of the Board Andrew Ansin ’81 and Head of School Penny Townsend met with the Pollak family and shared remembrances before presenting a plaque inscribed with a lengthy tribute. “You had an amazing father,” Penny Townsend said to the children. “He was a very successful, loving human being, and you were the lights of his life.”
FJ Pollak helped transform the wireless industry, making cell phones more affordable and widely available through his company Tracfone Wireless. He prioritized his children’s education, sending them to the Cushman School, where he served on the board of trustees, and then to Ransom Everglades. He honed his passion for golf at the La Gorce Country Club, and shared that passion with each of his children. He and Abigail contributed to many philanthropic causes, including aiding orphans in Latin American countries.
The plaque outside the conference room that leads to the Middle School Atrium states: “FJ led a life of purpose and meaning, making a difference in the world through thoughtful philanthropy and socially conscious leadership.”
Founded in 1903, Ransom Everglades School is a coeducational, college preparatory day school for grades 6 - 12 located on two campuses in Coconut Grove, Florida. Ransom Everglades School produces graduates who "believe that they are in the world not so much for what they can get out of it as for what they can put into it." The mission of Ransom Everglades School is to provide an educational environment in which the pursuit of honor, academic excellence and intellectual growth is complemented by concern for the physical, cultural and character development of each student. The school provides rigorous college preparation that promotes the student's sense of identity, community, personal integrity and values for a productive and satisfying life, and prepares the student to lead and to contribute to society.