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Monday, Dec 22, 2014

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Howard Lipman

Howard Lipman

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Foundation Matters: Ohio alumni continue to transform lives in difficult times


When our nation faces challenges, when economies lag, when giving back becomes more difficult, alumni and friends continue to make Ohio University a priority.

Private support provides the margin of excellence – making possible the scholarships, research, and innovative programs that set the University apart among its peers. It is vital to Ohio University’s success.

In fiscal year 2009-10, through April 30, more than 23,500 alumni and friends have made gifts through The Ohio University Foundation totaling $49.26 million and surpassing a $22 million goal. More than 78 percent of this support has been directed to academic programs and scholarships.

“This broad base of support for our academic mission demonstrates the deep commitment and loyalty of our supporters to Ohio University,” says Howard R. Lipman, vice president of University Advancement and president and CEO of The Ohio University Foundation.

This year Ohio University celebrated the commitment of Violet Patton, BSEd ’38, who has given more than $41 million to the University. In January, she donated $13.3 million to establish the Violet L. Patton Center for Arts Education. In February, she committed $28 million, which will honor her parents, David and Gladys Patton, both educators. In recognition of this most recent gift, the College of Education will be renamed The Gladys W. and David H. Patton College.

While these transformational gifts make news, the University also celebrates loyal annual donors. This year more than 690 alumni are celebrating special anniversaries – having given for 20+ consecutive years. At the top of the list is Shirley Baxter Berndsen. A 1951 Department of History graduate, she made her first gift of $10 in 1952 and has given every year since 1957. That’s 53 years of annual gifts. “It doesn’t have to be a lot,” says Berndsen. “It adds up.”

These gifts added together transform lives. In fiscal 2010 to date, annual gifts of $1 to $10,000 are adding up to more than $3.9 million.

This funding supports excellence across campus. For example the privately funded Osteopathic Heritage Foundations and Charles R. and Marilyn Y. Stuckey Academic Research Center (ARC), which celebrated its grand opening on May 8, 2010, received more than $22 million in support from 550 alumni and friends and is one of only four campus buildings financed primarily through private donations. The new facility houses premier learning spaces developed with collaboration in mind. It’s also home to 10 researchers from the College of Osteopathic Medicine and the Russ College of Engineering & Technology.  These researchers are at the forefront of diabetes and cancer research and drug development.
Private gifts – particularly in difficult times – support this level of achievement.

For more information on making a difference at Ohio University, and to make a gift to the area that means the most to you, call 800-592-FUND (3863) or e-mail giving@ohio.edu. Secure online giving available at www.ohio.edu/give, convenient giving through payroll deduction also available.