Former President Issues Alumni Gift Challenge

Nov. 27, 2012

UT Dallas President Emeritus Robert Rutford served as the University's leader from 1982 to 1994.

UT Dallas President Emeritus Robert Rutford has put forth a generous challenge to alumni who graduated during his tenure, from 1982 to 1994.

Dr. Rutford is offering $50,000 in matching funds to graduates from those years who make new gifts to the University by Dec. 31. If the $50,000 goal is met, he will give up to $50,000 more in matching funds.

Rutford encourages alumni to invest in the value of their degrees, pointing to recent jumps in UT Dallas' rankings in Times Higher Education and U.S. News & World Report. “Your University is clearly on a path to become one of the top universities in the nation, and I’m asking you to help keep UT Dallas moving forward,” he said.

So far, more than 300 alumni have contributed more than $44,000 in gifts and pledges through the Rutford Challenge. The effort is also receiving a boost from Dr. James Carter, professor emeritus of geosciences, who is matching any gifts made to the Department of Geosciences through the Rutford Challenge.

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All of these gifts count toward the University’s Realize the Vision: The Campaign for Tier One and Beyond. More than $125 million has been raised toward the $200 million-campaign to support the University’s goal of becoming a Tier One research institution. The five-year initiative ends in 2014.

When alumni support the University their investment benefits UT Dallas in a critical way, explained Erin Dougherty BA’03, MPA’07, senior director of alumni relations and annual giving. Alumni giving is a factor in the methodology used by U.S. News & World Report and many other rankings. In some assessments, alumni participation rates are more important than fund raising totals. “A small gift counts just as much as a large one when measuring alumni participation in giving,” she said.

To participate in the challenge, please visit this website. For questions about the challenge, contact Dougherty at 972-883-2328 or erin.dougherty@utdallas.edu.


Media Contact: Sara Mancuso, UT Dallas, (972) 883-6507, smancuso@utdallas.edu,
or the Office of Media Relations, UT Dallas, (972) 883-2155, newscenter@utdallas.edu
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Challenge terms

  • Donors must be alumni who earned a degree from 1982 to 1994, the time span that Dr. Rutford led the University.
     
  • Only new gifts made by individuals between Oct. 1 and Dec. 31, 2012, are eligible.
     
  • The maximum gift eligible for the match is $5,000.
     
  • Gifts will be matched one-to-one up to $100,000. If the amount raised exceeds $100,000, then match amounts will be prorated.

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