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People gather at the McKnight Center for Heritage Society

Heritage Society: OSU hosts planned gift donors for event at The McKnight Center

Wednesday, August 31, 2022

Media Contact: Mack Burke | Associate Director of Media Relations | 405-744-5540 |

On April 29, the Oklahoma State University Foundation hosted members of the Heritage Society on campus for a special event to celebrate their passion and generosity toward OSU.

“We had a tremendous turnout for this year’s event,” said Derrick Davies, assistant vice president of gift planning for the OSU Foundation. “Our members enjoyed being back on campus, visiting friends and seeing the impact that planned gifts have at OSU.”

Heritage Society honors alumni and friends who have made a commitment to OSU by will, revocable living trust, life insurance, life-income gift, retirement account designation or other deferred gift arrangement.

The group currently includes 1,280 members who have made more than $675 million in documented, but not yet realized, estate gifts. Planned giving and estate gifts have also accounted for more than $160 million in realized impact that has been felt throughout OSU, from the arts to athletics.

“We all recognize the importance of planned gifts to ensure the long-term success of the university,” said Kyle Wray, OSU senior vice president of executive affairs. “We are so grateful to all our Heritage Society members for making that commitment.”

Heritage Society allows its members to experience the impact of their estate gifts during their lifetime. Donors get the as well as learn about all the transformational things going on at the university.

“Along with the incredible financial impact, estate donors’ leadership and philanthropy leave a lasting impression on our students and faculty,” Davies said. “Their examples of generosity and kindness inspire the next generations to continue paying it forward.”

The Heritage Society event included campus and fundraising updates from Wray and OSU Foundation President Blaire Atkinson. It also featured performances by Greenwood School of Music students — including piano and jazz — and students from the Department of Theatre.

Dr. Glen Krutz, former dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, was excited to share the talents of OSU students and faculty with the donors.

“Many of you here today are generous supporters of the arts at OSU, and for this, we extend our deepest gratitude,” Krutz said. “Your generosity is helping to ensure these talented students are given the opportunities they deserve.”

Following the performances, donors enjoyed brunch in the Thoma Grand Atrium before being led on guided tours of The McKnight Center and Greenwood School of Music. The two facilities serve as examples of how donors enrich the lives of students at OSU and prepare them for future success.

“Facilities like The McKnight Center and the Greenwood School of Music make opportunities available to our students that would not be possible without the generosity of donors like those in Heritage Society,” Wray said.

Photos by: Michael Molholt

Story by: Grant Ramirez | STATE Magazine

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