Ted M. Beal ’64
Athletic administrator became highly successful businessman and dedicated supporter of Bates
Ted Beal grew up in Wethersfield, Conn., and attended Wethersfield High School, but his family was from Beal’s Island in Southwest Harbor, Maine, working in lobstering and fishing. In high school, Ted played varsity basketball and baseball, winning conference honors in both.
At Bates, Ted played basketball for four years and pitched for the baseball team for three years, but during his senior year he suffered a rotator cuff injury. Ted worked hard at the 1960s version of rehab, but his first few pitches in spring practice scared Coach Chick Leahey so much that Ted’s senior season ended before it began. Ted graduated from Bates with a degree in History and later continued his studies at Seton Hall University, where he earned a Masters Degree in Education Administration.
For 16 years Ted worked in Neptune, N.J., first as a high school history teacher, varsity basketball coach, and athletic director, and then as the president of the 40-school New Jersey Shore Conference and as an assistant superintendent in charge of athletics and co-curricular activities. During this time, Ted was elected to the Bates College Key and served as an Alumnus in Admissions volunteer, helping Trustee Dave Boone ’62 with some of the earliest multicultural recruiting efforts, helping to bring highly talented student-athletes from Neptune High and surrounding communities. Ted’s eye for talent was evident in his recruiting of 1,000-point scorer Erik Bertelsen ’72, another Scholar-Athlete Society member.
In 1980, Ted began a remarkable transition from school administration to corporate success, going to AXA/Equitable Financial Companies as first an agent, then district manager, and then managing director and co-founder of the AXA/Equitable Retirement Benefits Group. Ted built a national organization modeled on their New Jersey/Connecticut regional businesses, focusing on employer-sponsored retirement markets. They began in 2001 with five offices and 40 agents, and by his retirement at the end of 2008, Ted led a team with over 60 offices and more than 1,000 agents and managers. Currently Ted works with clients who have long historical relationships, and he does consulting and speaking with AXA/Equitable. Ted’s extraordinary success over two decades as a school administrator and coach and now over three decades as a corporate leader and entrepreneur is a remarkable testament to the rich flexibility of his Bates education, but also to Ted’s own discipline, commitment and intellectual precision. One of the purposes of the Bates Scholar-Athlete Society is to offer models and encouragement to younger and graduating alumni. Ted is “Exhibit A” of what happens with a Bates education and great drive.
Ted’s charitable work focuses on areas of interest to him and his wife, Karen: medicine, spirituality, education and athletics. Ted’s most generous support for the new Garcelon Field at just the right time helped deliver a facility that ties the campus together and brings more of the excitement of Bates Athletics to the center of campus. Coach, mentor, and counselor, Ted’s commitment to athletes at Bates includes support for coaches and gifts to financial aid, enabling today’s talented student-athletes to share the Bates experience he cherishes so deeply. For his passionate support of Bates and his tireless efforts to include others that so captures the Bates spirit, we are honored to welcome Ted Beal into the Bates Scholar-Athlete Society.