Alfred A. McKethan name carrying over to Florida Ballpark

The Alfred A. McKethan name has been synonymous with Florida Gators baseball since 1987 and will continue when the Gators move into their new ballpark in 2021.

Monday the University of Florida announced that the field at Florida Ballpark will be named in honor of Alfred A. McKethan.

In 1987 Mr. McKethan led fundraising efforts that totaled $2.4 million dollars towards construction and refurbishments — which included a 2,500 seat grandstand and 800 new chairbacks, a new press box, concession stands, and restrooms.

McKethan served as President and Chief Executive Officer of the Sun Bank & Trust Company (formerly Hernando State Bank) from 1942 until his retirement in 1994.

At the age of 38, McKethan became the youngest president of the Florida Bankers Association. Along with his brother, John W. McKethan, he established the Brooksville Rock Company, which later became known as the Florida Mining and Materials Corporation. After he earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration from the University of Florida as an honors graduate in 1931, McKethan maintained close ties as an alumnus. In 1981, it was McKethan who became the first eminent scholar under a new law that provided matching funds from the state to create chairs at Florida universities if the private sector donated $600,000. McKethan made his donation to UF’s College of Business Administration. Also active on campus, McKethan was a member of the President’s Council, a long-time Bull Gator, and eventually became a Distinguished Director of Gator Boosters.

McKethan passed away in 2002 at the age of 93. His family has continued his support of the Florida baseball program and Florida athletics. On February 14 five of Mr. McKethan’s grandchildren threw out the ceremonial first pitch before the 2020 season opener. The next time the family comes to a game they will watch the Gators play on Alfred A. McKethan Field.

Nick de la Torre
A South Florida native, Nick developed a passion for all things sports at a very young age. His love for baseball was solidified when he saw Al Leiter’s no-hitter for the Marlins live in May of 1996. He was able to play baseball in college but quickly realized there isn’t much of a market for short, slow outfielders that hit around the Mendoza line. Wanting to continue with sports in some capacity he studied journalism at the University of Central Florida. Nick got his first start in the business as an intern for a website covering all things related to the NFL draft before spending two seasons covering the Florida football team at Bleacher Report. That job led him to GatorCountry. When he isn’t covering Gator sports, Nick enjoys hitting way too many shots on the golf course, attempting to keep up with his favorite t.v. shows and watching the Heat, Dolphins and Marlins. Follow him on twitter @NickdelatorreGC