Dear university colleague:
I am grateful for the many ways we advanced Oregon State University’s mission together in 2022. And, what a year it was! We ended the fiscal year in June with record fundraising results, we welcomed OSU’s 16th president, we publicly launched Believe It: The Campaign for OSU and our student-athletes won the Las Vegas Bowl last weekend.
We look forward to a new year, which will include strategic planning for both the university and the Foundation as well as new fundraising and engagement initiatives. Expect to hear more about focused fundraising efforts for both Student Success and Collaborative Research and Innovation, an initiative to support the work that will occur in the Jen-Hsun and Lori Huang Collaborative Innovation Complex.
In an effort to keep you, our university leaders, apprised of the Foundation’s activities, I’m pleased to share the snapshot below of just a few of the things on our minds as we move into the new year, none of which would be possible without your partnership.
By the numbers
So far FY23 has been a successful year in all three areas of the OSU Foundation’s mission:
As of November 30, donors had given $58.87 million toward our baseline fundraising goal of $134 million.
Engage our community
Through early December, we have tracked meaningful engagement with 17,705 individuals toward our goal of engaging 30,000+ individuals for the fiscal year. This includes over 2,000 volunteers, as well as OSU Connections, our online networking platform, which now exceeds 2,000 registrants.
The most recent endowment market value, as of October 31, was $754.42 million. Given the turbulence in the markets during 2022, the endowment is performing quite well and is up since September. We are grateful for the proactive management provided by our partners at Agility, guided by policies established by the Foundation Board of Trustees’ Investment Committee.
Bowl Game Celebrations for Donors, Alumni and Friends
What an amazing season for Oregon State Football! Beaver Nation turned out in force to cheer on our student-athletes as they defeated the Florida Gators at the SRS Distribution Las Vegas Bowl. We are grateful for the international visibility the bowl game brought to Oregon State and for the opportunities to engage our donors, alumni and friends in Vegas.
The Friday before the game, the Foundation hosted a donor welcome reception in Paris Las Vegas for 350 members of OSU giving societies, as well as a dinner for our most generous donors and volunteer leaders. On Saturday, before the game, we hosted the OSU Alumni Association Tailgate Town for 800+ of our closest friends. We’re proud, but not at all surprised, to share that the tailgate sold out within 24 hours, demonstrating great enthusiasm from our alumni and friends.
Beyond the bowl game, though, I’m grateful to all of you who stopped by the President’s Tailgates and/or Valley Endzone Skybox this season. These events offered an excellent opportunity for us to introduce President Jayathi Murthy, showcase OSU’s excellence through featured speakers and celebrate our student-athletes. And, we were honored to serve wine from Domaine Drouhin, Domaine Serene, Pepper Bridge, Willakenzie, Bethel Heights and Archery Summit, each of which is supportive of the Oregon Wine Research Institute in our College of Agricultural Sciences.
Believe It: The Campaign for Oregon State University
Thank you to those of you who joined us for, or helped promote or prepare for, the public launch of Believe It: The Campaign for Oregon State University. Guided by our campaign launch partner INVNT, the launch event took place on October 14 on the Memorial Union Quad during Homecoming Weekend and brought together over 500 donors to celebrate the campaign’s milestones so far.
In this campaign, the OSU Foundation anticipates that donor support will fund the following university priorities: $460 million for student support, including scholarship, fellowship and experiential learning funds; $500 million for faculty positions and support funds; $320 million for new facilities, renovations and equipment; $250 million for emerging strategic initiatives; and $220 million for outreach programs that will benefit Oregon and beyond. We are working closely with our brand identity partner Pentagram on finalizing public-facing cases for support for the university and all major fundraising units.
OSU Loyal Philanthropic Partner Award
I was pleased to see record attendance at last month’s OSU Loyal Reception for faculty and staff donors in the Kelley Engineering Center. Thank you to everyone who was able to attend! Special thanks to OSU President Jayathi Murthy for joining us in honoring faculty and staff donors, who we refer to collectively as OSU Loyal, and to Eric Beeler for chairing the OSU Loyal Advisory Committee.
Congratulations to Karen Swanger, director of KidSpirit, for being selected by the OSU Loyal Advisory Committee as the 2022 OSU Loyal Philanthropic Partner Award recipient. This annual award recognizes faculty and staff donors whose efforts support, promote and encourage a culture of philanthropy at the university. The recipient also receives a $5,000 award, which they may designate to the fund/s of their choice at the OSU Foundation.
Karen, a steadfast donor and fundraiser, embodies this award through her participation in Dam Proud Day, the Women’s Giving Circle and the many programs she leads that engage our community members. Learn more about Karen’s leadership, this award and OSU Loyal on our website.
If you’d like to volunteer on the OSU Loyal Advisory Committee, email Sara Dier, our new director of engagement and stewardship for annual giving.
We recently hosted the annual OSU Foundation Board Holiday Reception in Portland. We are grateful to our volunteer leaders, who helped us inspire record giving from donors, publicly launch the Believe It campaign and welcome the university’s new president.
Launching the OSU Foundation’s Strategic Planning Process
I am pleased to formally launch our next strategic planning process, which will be facilitated by RJ Valentino of the Napa Group and was formally kicked off by the Foundation’s Senior Leadership Team (SLT) on December 12, 2022.
As you may recall, due to the disruptions caused by the pandemic, to OSU and to higher ed in general, and the university’s unexpected leadership transition, we postponed launching our formal strategic planning process last year, when our previous plan expired. Since then, we have relied on our campaign plan, and the multi-year plans developed in many of our units out of necessity during the pandemic, to drive focus and outcomes. As the university begins its next formal strategic plan, it is now timely for us to do the same.
In the next few months, I will work with the SLT, and engage select stakeholders including university leaders and our boards, to form the Foundation’s goals and objectives for the next five years.
I am grateful to you for your continued partnership in advancing the university’s mission.
I’m also thankful to those of you who have supported causes important to you at OSU this year. This holiday season, the Foundation continues our tradition of promoting Beavers Fight Hunger to help ensure all OSU students have consistent access to healthy foods.
If you would like to join the many faculty and staff colleagues who support this effort, please consider making a year-end gift at BeaversFightHunger.org.
Please don’t hesitate to reach out to me if you have questions or comments. Happy holidays!
Shawn L. Scoville
President & CEO