Evan Hunter Gillette Memorial Scholarship
By Eleanor & Earl Gillette (Parents)
Evan Hunter Gillette, a Woodbury Native who lived on Manhattan’s Upper East Side, was among the more than 6,300 people missing and feared dead in the September 11th terrorist attack on the World Trade Center in New York.
Evan was Vice President for Sandler, O’Neill & Partners located on the 104th floor of the South Tower when the building was struck by an airplane piloted by terrorists. He was born May 5, 1961 and at that time resided in Milford. In 1964 his family moved to Woodbury, where their ancestors had settled in the 1850s. Mr. Gillette was schooled in Woodbury and graduated from Nonnewaug High School in 1979. He was a conscientious student, had taken a keen interest in the outdoors and enjoyed spending time with his lifelong friends. He was very active in scouting, and became an Eagle Scout in 1978 after he turned 17.
At election time, he volunteered at Republican headquarters in Woodbury and became very friendly with the late Malcolm Baldridge, then president of Scovill Manufacturing in Waterbury. When Evan was deciding where to go to college, Mr. Baldridge suggested he look at colleges in his home state of Wyoming. He decided to enroll at the University of Maine at Orono. After 2 1/2 years, he transferred to the University of Connecticut at Storrs to be closer to his family and friends. He graduated from UConn in 1983. His first job was in the business office at Scovill, where he worked for one year until the company was sold.
He wrote to Mr. Baldridge, who was then U.S. Secretary of Commerce under President Ronald Reagan, and asked for career advice. The two corresponded for about a month, until Mr. Baldridge told Mr. Gillette to “follow his nose”. Evan took Mr. Baldridge’s advice and enrolled in the master’s of business administration program at the University of New Haven. He graduated in 1986 and went to work at Centerbank, which has since merged with First Union, then Wachovia. He worked as a financial analyst, helping to invest the bank’s money at its main office in Waterbury. Five years later he applied for a job at the Federal Credit Union Administration in Washington, DC. Out of 48 applicants, he was chosen for the position. He traveled to federal credit union offices, audited their books and suggested ways to invest their money.
In 1996, Mr.
Gillette accepted a job as vice president at Sandler
O’Neill & Partners at their office at The World
Trade Center in Manhattan.