Edwin B. (Ted) Coghlin Jr
Edwin B. (Ted) Coghlin Jr
Title: Class of 2016
Organization: Contributor

Edwin B. (Ted) Coghlin was one of WPI's most dedicated graduates, and a tremendous supporter of WPI Athletics. The Worcester native helped shape the Central Massachusetts community as a civic, business, and philanthropic leader.

Ted was one of nine members of his family to attend WPI over the course of four generations. He earned a BS in mechanical engineering and honed his public service skills as president of the Tech Senate and the Student Christian Organization. He was a member of Pi Delta Epsilon and Skull honor societies—and he played football.

The 1991 recipient of the Frank C. Harrington Award as a distinguished contributor to WPI Athletics over a significant period of time, Ted was an active member of the Poly Club, serving on the Hall of Fame selection committee. He also attended the WPI Athletics banquet every May to present the John P. Coghlin Award in honor of his brother, awarded to a team manager for carrying out invaluable service for his or her team.

“Ted was a compassionate, dear friend who loved WPI and was a great champion of WPI Athletics,” recalls Dana Harmon, director of physical education, recreation and athletics. “He continually strived to make WPI Athletics the best it could be as a student-athlete, as an alum, and as a fervent supporter through the years—we owe him a great deal of thanks for all he has done.”

After graduation, he devoted his professional life to the Coghlin Companies, the family enterprise founded in 1885 by his grandfather, John P. Coghlin. Knowing that a quality workforce was vital to the success of theCoghlin Companies—and to the regional economy—he championed the construction of Worcester Technical High School (also known as "Worcester Tech"). As chairman of the Worcester Vocational Schools Advisory Board and president of the Skyline Technical Fund, he secured over $4 million in donations, which helped leverage more than $20 million in matching funds

He is credited with establishing the high school's close ties with the local business community; he also facilitated collaborations between the school and WPI. Former Worcester superintendent of schools Melinda Boone credited his support of the school with its designation as a 2013 Blue Ribbon School by the U.S. Department of Education and for the recognition it received from President Barack Obama, who spoke at the school's 2014 commencement ceremony. Former principal Sheila Harrity called him the "Godfather of Worcester Tech." 

Ted also worked tirelessly on behalf of WPI. Most notably, he served as chair of every one of his reunion committees, rallying his classmates to return to campus and to support their alma mater. The Alumni Association recognized Ted Coghlin in 1981with its Herbert F. Taylor Alumni Award for Distinguished Service to WPI and, in 2008, with its Humanitarian Award, recognizing his civic contributions. 

Click HERE to watch induction ceremony