WVU Benefactor Dlesk Has Died

  • By John Antonik
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  • December 21, 2013 09:36 AM
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Sylvan "Dick" Dlesk, pictured here at the soccer stadium dedication ceremony in 2004 with WVU women's coach Nikki Izzo-Brown, WVU Director of Athletics Ed Pastilong and WVU President David C. Hardesty, Jr.
Submitted photo
West Virginia University has lost a great friend. Sylvan “Dick” Dlesk, namesake for West Virginia University’s soccer stadium, died on Wednesday, Dec. 18 in Wheeling.
In 2004, Dlesk contributed the funds that made it possible to construct a new soccer stadium for the West Virginia University men’s and women’s soccer programs. The West Virginia University Board of Governors authorized the naming of Dick Dlesk Stadium at its April, 2004 meeting.
“The new stadium is vital to having a strong Division I soccer program,” then WVU athletic director Ed Pastilong said at the time of the stadium dedication. “Mr. Dlesk’s generous support of the project has allowed WVU to take another step to be competitive with the nation’s best soccer programs.”
Indeed, it did.
The WVU women’s program under Nikki Izzo-Brown has advanced to NCAA tournament play each year since Dick Dlesk Stadium’s dedication, and 14 consecutive years overall. In 2008, the Mountaineer women lost to USC in an NCAA tournament Elite Eight match at Dick Dlesk Stadium with more than 3,000 fans in attendance.
Men’s soccer has also enjoyed substantial success in the new facility, making recent NCAA tournament trips in 2005, 2006, 2007, 2010 and 2011.
Dlesk was born in Pittsburgh but lived in Wheeling where he was president of Custom Carpet. He was also President of Dlesk Realty and Investments and later became President and CEO of Progressive Bank and Chairman of the Board of the First WV Bank, Inc.
Dlesk’s generosity has also benefitted The Linsly School and the Wheeling Symphony.

Dlesk is survived by his wife, Rosalie, and two sons.

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