News Article

Norman Ernst Priebatsch Endowed Fund for Entrepreneurship

Featured firm in this article: Calista of Boston, MA

Norman Priebatsch, 67, died tragically on April 1, 2012, in a hiking accident on Tuckerman's Ravine in New Hampshire.

Norman’s sister- and brother-in-law, Ilene ’74 and Steven Rosenthal P’17, established the Norman Ernst Priebatsch Endowed Fund for Entrepreneurship in his memory. This fund will be administered by Wesleyan’s Patricelli Center for Social Entrepreneurship to cultivate entrepreneurship among college students. Annual seed grants and internship grants will be awarded to Wesleyan undergraduates who embody Norman’s innovative spirit, business acumen, and philanthropic dedication.

Ilene and Steven invite others to contribute to this Fund for Entrepreneurship in Norman’s honor.

Ways to give:

Online at Please specify that your gift is for the "Norman E. Priebatsch Endowed Fund for Entrepreneurship."
By mail to Norman Ernst Priebatsch Endowed Fund for Entrepreneurship c/o University Relations, Wesleyan University, 318 High Street, Middletown, CT 06259. Make checks payable to “Wesleyan University” and note that your donation is in memory of Norman Priebatsch.
By stock. Contact xxx for instructions.

Norman Priebatsch Biography

Norman Priebatsch, 2011Born in Johannesburg, the son of Herbert and Mary Priebatsch, who had left Germany in the early 1930's, Norman did his early schooling in South Africa, and at Aiglon College in Switzerland. He pursued a double degree in physics and economics at Keele University in England, class of 1967, and continued his studies at Harvard Business School, Class of 1972. After business school, he returned to South Africa where he was a director, along with his brothers Robert and Charles, of African Sales Company, which was founded by his father and uncle Herbert and Richard Priebatsch. Having settled in Boston in 1978, with his wife, Suzanne, Norman pursued a career as a serial entrepreneur with businesses ranging from cable television, to biotechnology, to working on developing a technique to alleviate the symptoms of tinnitus, an auditory ailment. Norman also was a volunteer at MITs Venture Mentoring Services, as well as being involved with the Massachusetts Life Sciences Start-up Initiative and The Capital Network, Boston.

Norman was an enthusiastic outdoorsman, and pursued a number of sports. He took up sailing and horseback riding in South Africa, he became an enthusiastic windsurfer when he moved to Boston. He typically began windsurfing on April 1, when Community Boating on the Charles River opens, and continued through the end of October, when the season finished. He was also an excellent skier and enjoyed skiing the mountains of New Hampshire, Utah and Colorado. He was an avid cyclist, which was his preferred means of local transportation. He also loved running along the Charles River. At the age of 50, Norman decided to take up running and ran in the Boston Marathon every year thereafter. At the time that he died Norman was regularly running approximately 60 miles per week in order to train for his 18th Boston Marathon.

Norman enjoyed many philanthropic activities and was involved with Combined Jewish Philanthropies, Noble and Greenough School, Princeton University, and Community Boating. He was loved and appreciated for his wide ranging enthusiasm and talents by a large circle of friends and colleagues. Norman was an exceptional father, playful and serious at the same time, who taught his children extraordinary lessons in creativity, sportsmanship, awareness of other cultures through extensive family travel, and business acumen.

He leaves his wife Suzanne, a senior vice president at Morgan Stanley Smith Barney, and his two highly accomplished children, Daniella, who works in the enterprise division of Google in Mountain View , California and his son Seth, who is the founder of SCVNGR and Level Up. In addition to his wife and children, he leaves behind two brothers, Robert and Charles Priebatsch of Johannesburg South Africa, with whom he kept regular contact through e mail, frequent phone calls and regular visits to South Africa, which he held dear in his heart.