Butch Hubert: A great friend to Elder

Almost every Elder student has made his way down to the Panther Athletic Complex at least once in his Elder career. While most students know the PAC (Panther Athletic Complex) as the home of Elder’s Baseball, Soccer, and Track teams, most don’t know the story behind the PAC. The Panther Athletic Complex started out as a dream among a distinguished group of Elder alumni—a dream to not only build a sports facility for Elder athletes, but to make it one of the top sports facilities in the area. After original plans were drawn up, fundraising went well—alumni and community members were eager to donate in an effort to make this dream a reality. As time progressed, however, funding became an issue. Development at the PAC slowed at an astronomical rate, until a generous donor stepped up, giving Elder the resources necessary to complete the PAC. This man is George Hubert. Commonly referred to as “Butch”, Hubert was born into a poor family in the Fairmont neighborhood. During his years at Elder High School, Hubert was not able to participate in extracurricular activities or sports due to a need for assistance with the family business. It was during these days when Hubert really took Elder’s message to heart—to give back. While most students nowadays would be liable to grovel or complain about staying home to help out, Hubert didn’t. Hubert made myriad sacrifices during his school career which have made him the generous benefactor and philanthropist that he is today. Upon hearing that progress on the PAC had reached a standstill, Hubert immediately decided to take action. Hubert didn’t just make another contribution to the PAC like his fellow alumni; Hubert charitably donated the finances needed to complete the PAC. The money donated by Butch and the Hubert family helped finish development of all the sporting facilities at the PAC, but, on top of that, Butch has money set aside to help create the baseball stadium which will someday surround the existing field. Head Track Coach Brian Flaherty has this to say about developments at the PAC, “The track is very important to the development of our track team. The track allows us to visually work on exchange zone markings for relays and the facility allows us to work on all 17 events in one place at one time. The future of Elder track is bright because of Butch Hubert and the PAC.” While his claim to fame at Elder has mostly come from helping complete the PAC—which is officially entitled the Butch Hubert Family Panther Athletic Complex—Hubert planted his seeds of philanthropy back in 2003 when he met a waitress at White Castle. On the way to the Elder vs. Winton Woods football game, Hubert stopped at White Castle only to hear a unique story from his waitress. The waitress, seeing Hubert in his Elder t-shirt, approached him eagerly and proceeded to explain how her son had gone to Elder. She also explained that she was working three jobs to put her other children through 12 years of Catholic education—a monumental task, but one she felt was worth it. After leaving the restaurant, Hubert got to thinking. He simply didn’t feel right letting this woman take on such a big task alone. Try as he might to find her again, Hubert never could. To serve as a testament to her, and any other parents in her situation, Hubert started the ESAP (Elder Scholar’s Assistance Program). This program was targeted toward families in Elder’s feeder school district who were financially struggling to keep their children in Catholic elementary schools. Scholarships were to be awarded to both boys and girls in order to give them the all important Catholic education. Since then, the program has expanded from its humble beginnings in the Price Hill neighborhood to assist families citywide, changing the meaning of its acronym from the Elder’s Scholarship Assistance Program to the Educational Scholarship Assistance Program. The ESAP has given out over $860,000 to over 1,800 students over the past seven years. When asked to comment on Hubert’s legacy, Tom Reiring stated, “Butch is just one of those big, loveable, Elder kind of guys”. Throughout his life, Butch Hubert has taken the core messages and teachings of Elder to heart—to help others. Both Elder and the Archdiocese of Cincinnati are truly lucky to consider Butch a member of their communities.