• Volume 14    Number 1    Winter 2004


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Development Notes

Director of Development

Fund-raising for Purdue and Purdue Agriculture takes many forms, but no matter what the process, it is what helps us maintain that “margin of excellence” that sets us apart from other fine universities and establishes our place as a preeminent university.

We never know what event or activity will affect our ability to raise the necessary funds to carry out our mission. Sometimes a gift is given because of what we are actively doing. A perfect example of this is the gift to the Department of Forestry and Natural Resources from the Van Eck family.

’82 grad
expands role

Bret Rush, BS ’82, has expanded his role in the Purdue Agriculture development office, accepting the position of associate director of development.


For the past three years, Rush was the development officer for the Department of Agronomy.

Michael Irvin, director of development, says Rush will be responsible for fund-raising for the Departments of Botany and Plant Pathology, Horticulture and Landscape Architecture, and Forestry and Natural Resources, in addition to the Department of Agronomy.

Rush replaces Max Bales, who became director of development for the College
of Agriculture and Consumer Sciences at Virginia Tech University in Blacksburg, Va.

Contact Rush at rushb@purdue.edu

This gift, $22 million of valuable timberland in California, came to Purdue because Fred Van Eck heard a presentation by one of our faculty members on research in hardwood tree improvement and regeneration. That presentation resulted in one of the largest gifts Purdue Agriculture has ever received.

All of us — faculty, staff, and students — represent Purdue Agriculture in important ways. From time to time we are able to immediately realize the fruits of our labor, but more often we plant the seeds for a crop that is harvested by those who follow after us.

The tremendous influence faculty and staff have on students is a hallmark of this great educational institution, and that was evident once again in December, when we offered a special “hard-hat” tour of Pfendler Hall before the Dean’s Club Dinner. The stories flowed freely about the special role David Pfendler played in the lives of many of our guests.

As we approach the completion of the restoration and renovation of Ag Hall, now known as Pfendler Hall of Agriculture, we celebrate the willingness of so many to give back to Purdue Agriculture because of Pfendler’s impact on their lives. Members of the Dean’s Club will receive a special invitation to tour Pfendler Hall on March 6. You may also wish to mark your calendar now for the building dedication, open to the public, scheduled for April 17.

The funding required for a project of this magnitude and importance does not happen without developing long-term relationships with our generous alumni and friends. The historic preservation of this second-oldest building on Purdue’s campus was made possible because of what this building represented to the many generous donors who came together to see it saved for the next generation.

Our mission in Purdue Agriculture is to present potential donors with opportunities to make a gift that supports our strategic goals and then appropriately acknowledges that support.

Studies have shown that the No. 1 reason that people give to any organization is because they believe in the mission of the institution. Purdue Agriculture is recognized worldwide for its contributions to the food, agriculture and natural resource area. The school’s goals for the Campaign for Purdue are clearly stated, and our mission is clear. Thanks to the generosity of many friends and alumni, we have enjoyed significant financial support to help achieve our goals. However, we still have much to accomplish.

In this new year, I invite you consider how you might become involved with Purdue Agriculture. Your generosity allows us to provide necessary student support, hire excellent faculty, and provide state-of-the-art laboratories and teaching facilities. With your help, Purdue Agriculture will continue to enjoy its well-deserved reputation as a world leader.

If you would like more information about the tours planned for Pfendler Hall or would like a copy of the College of Agriculture’s campaign objectives, please call the development office at (765) 494-8672 or toll-free at (800) 718-0094.

Contact Irvin at mirvin1@purdue.edu