Peter M. Flanigan founds Student Sponsor Partners, and that fall 45 students supported by 45 sponsors and mentors start ninth grade at Cardinal Hayes High School and Cathedral High School in New York City. 

SSP® expands network to include 11 partner schools and reaches beyond Manhattan and the Bronx into Brooklyn.

SSP sees its first class graduate from the program.

930 SSP students meet with Colin Powell at Cardinal Hayes High School.

For the first time SSP starts the school year with over 1,000 students in partner schools.

Five alumni begin a trend that continues to grow– they themselves became sponsors and mentors.

SSP adds an additional nine partner schools to network.

Student Sponsor Partners’ partner schools network grows to 20, with schools in every borough except Staten Island.

SSP recruits 410 sponsors and mentors– the largest number to date. 

SSP holds its First Annual Founder’s Dinner, which raised over $1 million.

David Dunn, a longtime supporter of SSP, becomes an extraordinary supporter, funding the education of 100 students with a gift totaling $500,000 a year. He later increases his gift to $750,000 annually, which funds 150 students. 

347 SSP students graduate in the class of 2004– the largest SSP graduating class to date. 

SSP adds an additional six partner schools to its network.

SSP receives the first of 2 anonymous $1 million gifts, the largest one time gift in the organization’s history.

SSP hosts its Tenth Annual Founder’s Dinner.

SSP develops strategic partnerships with organizations like the Diocese of Brooklyn.

SSP celebrates its 25th anniversary.

525 freshman students enter 26 partner schoolsthe largest entering class in Student Sponsor Partners’ history.

Valerie Rowe, SSP Board Member, donates $1 million to fund the education of 69 students.

SSP honors Colm Kelleher, Co-President of Morgan Stanley Institutional Securities and Head of EMEA and Asia Pacific, at the Thirteenth Annual Founder’s Dinner. The event draws 620 guests and raises $2.1 million.

SSP honors Credit Suisse & Brady Dougan, Chief Executive Officer, at the Fifteenth Annual Founder’s Dinner. The event was our most successful yet, raising $2.2 million.

SSP appoints Denise Durham Williams Executive Director. Click HERE for the press release and bio.

Peter M. Flanigan, Founder

Peter M. Flanigan was the founder of Student Sponsor Partners. He served on the SSP Board of Directors and financially sponsored students up until the time of his death in July 2013.

From 1969 to 1975 Mr. Flanigan served in Washington, DC under President Richard M. Nixon, first as assistant to the President on domestic commercial and economic matters, and later as director of the Council of International Economic Policy. He spent most of his career in finance with the New York-based investment banking firm Dillon, Read & Co., and is now an advisor to UBS Securities LLC, the New York City based international investment banking firm.

Mr. Flanigan had long been a supporter of access to education. He founded the Patrons Program in 1987, which encourages donors to support financially-challenged, inner-city Catholic elementary schools that are in danger of closing. To encourage research and implement new programs to improve education, he also founded the Center for Education Innovation of The Manhattan Institute.

Peter Flanigan served on many other non-profit boards including the Catholic University of America, Portsmouth Abbey School, the John M. Olin Foundation, and the Richard M. Nixon Library & Birthplace. He acted as chairman of Alliance for School Choice before his death but continued to serve on the board of directors.

After serving as a Navy carrier pilot in World War II, he graduated from Princeton University in 1947. He had five children with his first wife, Brigid, who passed away in 2006. Peter himself passed away quietly in Austria on July 29, 2013.

The SSP model is spreading.

Since its inception, SSP’s model has inspired nine other scholarship and mentoring programs across the nation. From Washington D.C. to Texas and even San Francisco, these programs are using the specific combination of mentoring and sponsorship to make an impact in their own communities. Our affiliates are:

Access to Better Learning & Education (ABLE) - Boston, MA
Student Partner Alliance
- Millburn, NJ
STAR Sponsorship Program
- Fort Worth, TX
Capital Partners for Education - Washington, D.C.
Partnership to Educate and Advance Kids (PEAK)
- Chicago, IL
Rhode Islanders Sponsoring Education
- Providence, RI
The BASIC Fund
- San Francisco, CA
Shepherds, Inc.
- Bridgeport, CT
Student Mentor Partners
- St. Clair Shores, MI