Abilene Christian University concludes largest campaign in the school's history, surpasses $100 million goal

For Immediate Release
Feb. 17, 2001

For more information contact:

Tom Craig, Director of Media and Community Relations

ABILENE - Abilene Christian University officials announced Saturday that the "To Lead and To Serve" campaign goal of $100 million has been exceeded by more than $14 million.

"When we set this goal, the largest in ACU's history, we knew it would take a lot of faith and a lot of friends to achieve it," said Dr. Royce Money, president. "God has blessed us beyond anything we could ask or imagine."

Between Jan. 1, 1996, and Dec. 31, 2000, the university received $114,249,083 from 22,725 donors, including individuals, foundations and corporations, Money said. Nearly 40 percent of ACU's alumni and 83 percent of the faculty and staff have made gifts during the campaign.

"These gifts will sustain and advance Abilene Christian into the 21st century," Money said. "This campaign has increased our endowment to more than $140 million, providing a strong foundation on which to build our future as a national leader in Christian higher education."

Money also said ACU's current endowment places the university in the top 10 percent of university endowments nationwide.

The largest campaign completed prior to "To Lead and To Serve" totaled $30 million, Money said.

The successful "To Lead and To Serve" campaign was publicly launched in 1998 with the single largest gift to the university in ACU's history, the $26.5 million Grace L. Woodward Memorial Endowment Trust. The Woodward Trust has enhanced the College of Biblical Studies, providing additional scholarships and faculty and strengthening the Graduate School of Theology.

"Supporting ACU is like dropping a rock in the middle of a placid pool," said Bob Woodward, son of the late Grace Woodward. "The rings that go out represent the good that the money can do through ACU. That good can go on until the end of time as we know it."

Dr. Jack Reese, dean of the College of Biblical Studies, said, "The Woodward gift has meant being able to add four faculty and a theological librarian. It has meant increasing student scholarships and being able to put in place a fully functioning, vibrant Graduate School of Theology. Without the money that came from this endowment, we would not have been able to accomplish these things."

Major facilities funded through this campaign include the $16 million, 86,000-square-foot William Performing Arts Center, named for Dallas civic leader J. McDonald "Don" Williams and his wife, Judy; and the $3.5 million, 43,500-square-foot Margaret L. and William J. Teague Special Events Center, named for ACU's chancellor and his wife, Peggy.

The new Williams Performing Arts Center, to be located on the southeast corner of the campus, will be ACU's second-largest building. It will house the theatre and music departments. Ground was broken for that facility in October.

The Teague Center opened in 1998 as a special events facility featuring athletics offices, a training room, and a multipurpose room that seats up to 1,500 people for meals and other special events. The large room also can serve as three indoor tennis courts.

Through "To Lead and To Serve" efforts, ACU also has renovated the Elmer Gray Track Stadium, built the A.E. "Poly" and Zieta Wells Softball Field, added a fiber optic network, and improved the university's infrastructure in various ways.

Don Crisp, chairman of ACU's Board of Trustees, said, "I think ACU set an extremely worthy goal. This $100 million has provided a base that will be a springboard into the future for us. With the help of our generous friends, we've now established a foundation that we can build on far into the future."

The three major components of the campaign were Endowment Fund, Capital Fund and Annual Fund. ACU exceeded its goals in all three categories, Money said.

Trustees James Muns of Plano and Randy Nicholson of Abilene served as co-chairs for the campaign.

"James and Randy provided tremendous leadership for this campaign," Money said. "To every volunteer, donor and friend of ACU, we say thank you. Your support will help Abilene Christian University change the world."


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If you are a member of the media who would like more information about this release, please contact Tom Craig, director of media and community relations, at craigt@acu.edu or call 915-674-2692 (cell phone: 665-5469).

Last update: Feb. 22, 2001
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