UW collects $50.7 million in private donations

2014-08-28T15:00:00Z 2014-08-29T06:52:06Z UW collects $50.7 million in private donationsThe Associated Press The Associated Press
August 28, 2014 3:00 pm  • 

CHEYENNE, Wyo. — The University of Wyoming saw a slight dip in private contributions in the past fiscal year but still collected the second-highest amount ever despite turmoil in the university’s top administrative post.

For the fiscal year ending June 30, private giving to UW reached $50.7 million, with contributions coming from more than 24,000 individuals, corporations and foundations. While down from the previous year’s record of $56 million, it is still only the second time in the school’s history that fundraising has exceeded $50 million.

“We took a lot of pride when we passed the $20 million mark and a lot of pride when we passed the $30 million mark and then $40 million, and now for two consecutive years we’ve passed $50 million,” UW Foundation President Ben Blalock said Thursday.

Blalock said the numbers are particularly pleasing especially considering the situation with former UW President Bob Sternberg, who resigned last November after less than five months on the job. Sternberg left amid complaints about how he was running the state’s only public four-year university.

“That potentially could be concerning to contributors, but I would say it was never reflected in the private contributions,” Blalock said. “So I would say it’s a tribute to the strength of the University of Wyoming and the commitment of our alumni and friends to the advance of our university.”

UW President Dick

McGinity said in a statement that the money raised is


“This support will allow Wyoming’s university the extra edge to educate our students, to serve the state and to provide excellence in everything that we do,” he said.

The largest, single donations came from energy companies that do business in Wyoming and from individuals supporting athletic facilities.

Hess Corp. committed $5 million to support the construction and equipping of UW’s new High Bay Research Facility for research into unconventional reservoirs of oil and gas.

Halliburton, a leading oil field services company, also supported construction of the High Bay facility, giving $2 million. In addition, Halliburton gave $1 million for research into unconventional reservoirs.

UW athletics received a record $12.8 million in donations to support renovations and student-athletes. Maurice W. Brown donated $3 million to the $30 million Arena-Auditorium renovation project, and the court will be named the Maurice W. Brown Court in his honor. Mick and Susie McMurry, through the McMurry Foundation, supported the AA renovation with a $2 million donation.

Annual giving surpassed $5 million for the fourth straight year and achieved a record of $5.6 million. Annual giving encompasses all unrestricted gifts that support UW’s colleges and departments and incorporates the money given by many individuals to Wyoming Public Media and the Cowboy Joe Club.

The university’s endowment as of June of this year totaled $410.4 million.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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