Ever Elon Campaign passes $100 million goal
Elon concludes the largest fundraising campaign in its history by celebrating the thousands of people who have invested in the university's future.
The Elon University community gathered to celebrate surpassing the historic $100 million Ever Elon goal at Rally Elon, a festive event on Oct. 21 that attracted a Homecoming Weekend crowd to Rhodes Stadium.
Elon will continue to count gifts toward the final tally of Ever Elon: The Campaign for the Future of Our University through Dec. 31, 2011. The campaign total as of Oct. 21 was $105,662,630.
“When we kicked off the public phase of this campaign, we chose the name Ever Elon because we are focused on the long-term future of this great university,” said Leo M. Lambert, Elon’s president. “The campaign priority was to build Elon’s endowment, and our community responded with nearly $53 million in endowment gifts, commitments and planned gifts that will benefit students and faculty for generations to come. The conclusion of Ever Elon is really just the beginning of the tremendous impact that philanthropy is making on the people and programs of our university. I want to send a heart-felt ‘thank you’ to everyone who played a role in reaching this historic goal.”
Elon announced the public phase of the campaign in October 2008. Through their gifts, donors have established 204 new scholarships, including those that will make an Elon education possible for students with financial need. New need-based scholarship endowments included the campaign’s largest single commitment, a $5 million gift from 1956 alumnus Furman Moseley and his wife Susan to support the Susan Scholars.
In addition to need-based scholarships, campaign donors have endowed merit-based scholarships for students with special talents, including student-athletes and performing arts students; 45 study abroad scholarships; and more than $2 million in scholarship funding for students in Elon University School of Law.
Other gifts to Ever Elon have created endowments to support eight new named professorships, faculty research, undergraduate research, service-learning opportunities, and the Elon Academy, a college-access program for promising high school students in Alamance County with high financial need or no family history of attending college.
Academic initiatives supported by the campaign include the new physician assistant studies master’s degree program, the Doherty Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership, the Chandler Family Professional Sales Center, the Porter Family Professional Development Center, the Joseph M. Bryan Distinguished Leadership Lecture Series at Elon Law, and Elon’s expanded career programs, which will be consolidated into a new Student Professional Development Center.
“The importance of building Elon’s endowment as a permanent source of financial support for students, faculty and programs inspired many members of our community to support this campaign,” said Mark Mahaffey of St. Petersburg, Fla., chair of the board of trustees and parent of two Elon alumni. “Elon’s trustees are gratified by the tremendous support this campaign has received. We launched Ever Elon during the depth of the financial crisis, and we worked with donors during very difficult economic times. Alumni, parents, friends, corporations and foundations responded generously because they understand that supporting Elon must remain a top priority for all of us.”
Mahaffey served as Ever Elon’s first campaign chair and later passed the campaign leadership on to fellow trustees Allen Gant of Burlington, N.C., chief executive officer of Glen Raven, Inc., and Kerrii Anderson, a 1979 Elon alumna and former CEO of Wendy’s International, Inc.
In addition to building the university endowment, Ever Elon brought impressive gains in annual giving. From the beginning of the campaign through September 2011, Elon has received more than $27 million in annual gifts, which support scholarships, programs and daily operations of the university.
“During the course of Ever Elon, members of our community came to understand the importance of making annual gifts as an expression of their belief in the values of our university,” said Anderson, who led a successful matching gift effort to increase support among young alumni. “I'm looking forward to seeing participation in annual giving rise even higher as we build on the success of Ever Elon.”
Ever Elon also included an important set of fundraising goals for campus facilities. Gifts to the campaign have provided funding for the following facilities:
- Lindner Hall, home of Elon College, the College of Arts and Sciences
- Renovation of a portion of the Gerald L. Francis Center to support the launch of the physician assistant studies master’s degree program
- Alumni Field House, which includes Hendrickson Football Center
- Renovation of Alumni Gym to include Robertson Court and related athletics facilities in Koury Center
- Worsley Golf Training Center
- Renovations to Latham Park, including a new baseball playing field and drainage systemConstruction of the Student Professional Development Center in Moseley Center
- Numen Lumen Pavilion, Elon’s new multi-faith center that will be the sixth and final pavilion in the Academic Village
- Hunt Softball Park to be constructed west of Rhodes Stadium
“Ever Elon has provided the resources to allow us to begin to pursue the exciting goals of our strategic plan, the Elon Commitment,” Gant said. “Elon is on a trajectory to become one of the nation’s finest universities, and this campaign is another milestone in that effort. What a wonderful way to celebrate what we have achieved and what we have planned for the future. We are helping students make their dreams come true.”