Fundraising Friday: Michigan's Oldest Gym Gets Boost, Record Gift to Murray State Athletics

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Welcome to Fundraising Friday, AB Today’s weekly digest of recent developments in development.

Kresge Gymnasium — Michigan’s oldest active intercollegiate athletic facility and home to men’s and women’s basketball, women’s volleyball, and men’s and women’s wrestling at Albion College— is slated to receive significant upgrades this summer thanks to a $1 million gift from alum Joe Serra and his wife Julie Serra, according to the school.

Miami University has received a $2 million alumni gift from Brian and Jennifer Niccol, Class of 1996 and Class of 1997, respectively. As reported by Dayton Business Journal, the gift — named the Niccol Family Basketball Award for Excellence in Academics and Athletics — is now part of the Miami University Graduating Champions Academic Achievement Program.

The Pirate Club at East Carolina University has announced a $1.5 million investment from Lance Clark and Heath Clark of Bill Clark Homes in support of a proposed multipurpose indoor facility and a baseball building expansion, bringing the Clark family’s total contributions to the Pirate Unite Campaign for Comprehensive Excellence within the past 19 months to more than $3.5 million, according to the school.

Murray State Athletics has received a $1.25 million gift from Tommy and Sandy Draffen that will directly impact the newly announced Roy Stewart Stadium weight room renovation and secure the naming rights for the Draffen Family Performance Center. According to the school, it’s the largest-ever single investment to MSU Athletics in department history.

The University of Maine has announced an $80 million donation from the Harold Alfond Foundation that will go toward athletic facility upgrades at its Orono campus, As reported by the Portland Press Herald, the gift comes on the heels of $90 million the foundation awarded in 2022 adds to a growing pool of funding — as much as $208 million — that the university can tap into to complete its widespread athletic facilities master plan: building a new complex for soccer and track and field, expanding the Shawn Walsh Center and adding a new multipurpose practice facility. The University of Maine’s hockey arena and football stadium already bear his name of the late philanthropist Herold Alfond, founder of the Dexter Shoe Company.

Total amount of these gifts: 

  $85,750,000

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