The Colgate Scene
March 2002

A grand night

Dan Benton '80, center with Chairman of the Board John Golden '66 and Interim President Jane Pinchin, made his first gift as an undergraduate, has supported the Annual Fund every year since commencement and is the youngest member of the James B. Colgate Society.

On an evening with a touch of pomp, some circumstance and plenty of high spirits the James B. Colgate Society inducted its fifth class.

Reserved for those who have given an accumulated million dollars or more to the university, the society welcomed nine new members during a celebratory dinner at the St. Regis in New York City on January 8.

Presiding at the induction ceremony were Interim President Jane Pinchin and Chair of the Board of Trustees John Golden '66, who was himself being ushered into the society.

Members at the dinner included, from left, Jim Manzi '73, Tony Whaling '59, Dick Kessler '52, Dan Benton '80, Interim President Jane Pinchin, Joe Mangin '50, Luther Brady, Garry Bewkes '48, Doug Campbell '50, John Golden '66 and Cece Gamwell '46

From the certificates:

Daniel C. Benton '80: Brilliant, thoughtful and philanthropic, Dan Benton is the youngest member of the James B. Colgate Society. He shares his financial expertise with Colgate as a member of the Board of Trustees and by managing a portion of the endowment.

Paul B. Gammons '49 Postume: Paul Gammons was not well known at Colgate, where he had been a consistent but modest donor. He returned to campus only rarely and had given no indication that the university was in his will. His outright bequest of $1.5 million came as a wonderful surprise and helped establish 1999 as planned giving's best year.

Cecil C. Gamwell III '46: Cece Gamwell's very special philanthropy to Colgate connects to his interest in providing opportunities for students, both in attending Colgate and allowing them to pursue Latin American studies. His generous multi-million-dollar gift ensures that more than just a few students will benefit from all that Colgate has to offer.

John A. Golden '66: John Golden has a keen interest in doing all that he can to enhance the quality of each student's experience. As a volunteer and through his support of many different areas of the college, he ensures the excellence of their education will last a lifetime.

Richard M. Kessler '52: Trustee emeritus, former chair of the Presidents' Club, recipient of a Maroon Citation and the Alumni Award for Distinguished Service, Dick Kessler has long put his passion for Colgate into action.

William T. Knowles '57: Just as Trustee Emeritus Bill Knowles helped Colgate advance through remarkable volunteer service, so too will his philanthropy provide lasting benefits. The William Townsend Knowles Jr. Scholarship Fund and student research fund established in memory of his son will enrich the experience of future generations of Colgate students.

Joseph A. Mangin '50: Joe Mangin's support is felt across a wide Colgate spectrum, from Cotterell Court to Lathrop Hall. He has funded geologist Charlie McClennen's research in Venice, helped make archaeologist Jordan Kerber's digs possible, seen to it that Campus Safety vehicles are equipped with defibrillators and has underwritten much of the progress in Information Technology.

C. Blake McDowell Jr. '40 Postume: Blake McDowell's testamentary trust gift of $2.1 million stands as a marker of his affection for and faith in Colgate, and the McDowell Scholarship that he established will provide important support for deserving students for years to come.

Frederick J. Tedeschi '40: As a Colgate volunteer, Fred Tedeschi was active in the ERA Campaign and as a class agent. Judge Tedeschi has set a wonderful example for others to follow by establishing a charitable remainder trust that will ultimately support the Frederick J. Tedeschi Endowed Scholarship Fund

Garry Bewkes '48 and Tony Whaling '59 made sure the James B. Colgate Society members sang for their supper.

The ceremony brought to 50 the number of members inducted since the James B. Colgate Society was formed in 1995.

"This dinner is always a memorable event, but it also represents one of Colgate's greatest challenges," Jane Pinchin told the audience of trustees -- sitting, former and emeriti -- who were also being honored at the dinner. "How can this event adequately express our appreciation for the generosity of those whose lifetime contributions exceed one million dollars?

"I have had the special vantage point for many years to witness just how each of their gifts has made a difference for our faculty and students. Among the wonderful examples: more students are benefiting from financial aid thanks to the scholarship funds that have been established by members of the James B. Colgate Society. We have a stronger faculty thanks to the endowed professorships that have been established by members of the society. The campus landscape has changed dramatically through the years and the most prominent buildings and facilities on campus bear the names of members of our society: Bewkes, Clifford, Colgate, Cooley, Curtis, Cushman, Drake, Golden, Ho, Lally, Little, O'Connor, Persson, Picker, Sanford, Schupf, Wendt and Whaling."

Pinchin also thanked the members of the board, current and past, "for spending countless hours of personal time helping the college." She went on to say, "Our community is indeed grateful to you, just as we value the hard work and commitment of the faculty and staff here tonight. There is no right metaphor that can describe the magic and beauty of the Colgate educational experience in action. But, we need only feel the energy and spirit in this room tonight to understand its power and potential."

"The generosity of James B. Colgate, and the Colgate family, is at the very core of the college's history," said John Golden from the podium. "Through the years others have stepped forward to commit very generous levels of support. Their gifts have helped the university offer the highest quality educational experience possible for our students."

The day had begun with three trustee committee meetings, and the next day held a full slate beginning at 8 a.m., including a full board session, but before the gala concluded James B. Colgate Society members and the inductees were asked to lead the gathering in singing the Alma Mater. Garry Bewkes '48 and Tony Whaling '59 set the tone and everyone agreed it was the loudest -- and most spirited -- rendition they had heard in years.

Top of page
Table of contents
<< Previous: Natural history Next: Key to the Universe >>