Reunion 2012 was a record-setting one for reunion class giving. All milestone reunion classes broke records and exceeded their goals, with the total amount from all reunion classes reaching $385,366.21.
The 50th anniversary Class of 1962 broke the participation record for 50-year classes, and the 25-year Class of 1987 and the 10-year anniversary Class of 2002 both broke the previous records for total dollars raised for their anniversary years.
“Reunion gifts are a special opportunity for our alumni to stretch their giving level in honor of Oswego and the role it has played in shaping their lives today,” said Joy Westerberg Knopp ’92, director of annual giving. “It has been a tremendous honor working with these Reunion classes and our wonderful alumni volunteers this past year. They should all be proud of their accomplishments.”
The 50th anniversary Class of 1962 won the Participation Cup for the highest percentage of donors, with 147 donors or 48.5 percent of the class chipping in to raise $37,620.23.
The Class of 1962 not only exceeded their first class goal of $30,000, but also their original participation goal of 35 percent.
Jack James ’62 and Ed Heinrich ’62 chaired the class’s giving effort, beginning in October 2011 with a committee of a half-dozen classmates. Both chairmen led by example, with Heinrich and his wife, Janet Albreght Heinrich ’63, endowing a scholarship and James establishing a charitable gift annuity as leader of the Sheldon Legacy Society, those who have remembered Oswego in their estate plans.
“The success we had was nothing more than persistence, follow up emails, phone calls and note writing,” said
James explained the importance of supporting the college in honor of an anniversary year, saying, “Reunion giving makes a statement that alumni do participate in reunions, not just to gather back on campus to have fun, but also to make a worthwhile statement of our loyalty to our class and the institution.”
The Class of 1987, under the leadership of Reunion Giving Chair Lisa Marceau Schnorr ’87, skyrocketed past their $25,000 goal, raising $126,396, to break the $108,000 mark set by the Class of 1982 for their 25th Reunion.
The gift was boosted by a generous donation from a class member to establish a fund supporting international scholarships and initiatives at the college.
The Class of 1987 also carries the distinction of being the class which raised the largest senior class gift as students.
In addition, the 10th anniversary Class of 2002, under the leadership of Christopher Hockey ’02, surpassed their goal of $7,500 and broke a record by raising $13,162.64. The Class of 1998 set the previous record of $10,191.
Also successful in their fundraising efforts, garnering a total of $73,667.75 were the 20th anniversary classes, led by Fred Hinrichsen ’91 and Bob Hickey ’91, co-chairing the effort for the Class of 1991; Bill Schreiner ’92, leading the Class of 1992’s giving drive, and Nancy Smith Salisbury ’93 heading up the reunion giving effort for the Class of 1993.
“Gifts of all sizes truly do add up to make a difference for our students and these classes set a fine example for future classes celebrating their own Reunions,” said Knopp. “Their generosity will impact our students for years to come.”
Reunion 2013 is set for June 6 to 9, and Reunion Giving years are 1963, 1988, 2003, the 35th anniversary classes of 1977, 1978 and 1979, and the 15th anniversary classes of 1997, 1998 and 1999. To become involved in Reunion giving efforts, contact the Office of University Development at 315-312-3003 or firstname.lastname@example.org, and to help plan Reunion events and encourage classmates to attend, contact the Office of Alumni Relations at 315-312-5559 or email email@example.com.