A ‘purple wave of generosity’

JMU Headlines
The online excitement spread to campus, where fun activities gave students a new understanding of the ways alumni generosity has built the Madison Experience. Purple cookies were handed out in the Student Success Center.

SUMMARY: Dukes came together to give more than $1 million to 106 campus causes.

Every day is a good day to be a Duke — and JMU Giving Day is an extraordinary one. Feb. 22 was 24 hours of nonstop rallying, tallying and celebrating. Preliminary results show that more than 4,312 Dukes came together to give more than $1 million to 106 campus causes. Of the total, 695 Dukes gave $220,673 to Athletics. As accounting continues, these numbers are likely to rise.

“On Giving Day, JMU takes an incredible ride on this purple wave of generosity as people make their gifts to their favorite causes at JMU,” said Karen Risch Mott, the director of the Office of Annual Giving, “It’s electric! It’s also deeply meaningful to see our community come together like this. Way to go, Dukes!”

Progress was diligently documented at Giving Day headquarters.

Top Giving Day ambassadors:

There were 257 Giving Day ambassadors, and the top three won $500 each to direct to a favorite fund. Check out the number of Dukes these ambassadors inspired on JMU Giving Day:

  • 67: Carol Benassi (’82), manager of JMU Nation
  • 54: McKinley Melton, chair of the Furious Flower Poetry Center Advisory Board
  • 51: Ahmet Shala (51 donors), JMU global ambassador
  • 48: Taylor Kim, coach of the JMU Dukettes
  • 44: Cannie Campbell (’95, ’20M), associate vice president for Constituent Engagement at JMU

Campus celebrities served students their favorite breakfast foods in Festival at the late-night breakfast.


Challenge highlights:

  • COB’s Fifty to Infinity surpassed the 250-donor goal and unlocked $100K from Richard (’81) and Alison Banziger, Nora (’82) and Steve (’80) Crouch, and Chad (’88) and Lauryn Pomeroy. Total generosity: 317 Dukes gave $151,327
  • The Donna Harper Valley Scholars challenge surpassed its 200-donor goal and unlocked $50K from Carly and Frank Fiorina. Total generosity: 250 Dukes gave $109,686
  • Uncle Bijan’s Scholarship Fund, created in honor of former faculty member Bijan Sadaatman, met its match and unlocked a $12,500 challenge gift from Joe Showker. Total generosity: 85 Dukes gave $25,804
  • Women for ALL of Madison surpassed its 88-donor goal to unlock $22K from the WFM Executive Advisory Council. Total generosity: 317 Dukes gave $62,135

Purple posters dotted campus, highlighting the buildings and programs made possible by private dollars.


Did you know?

  • The first gift came in at 12:03 a.m. and the last gift at 11:58 p.m.
  • 613 Dukes said they gave to JMU causes for the first time.
  • There were 42,124 total views of the JMU Giving Day web page.
  • Gifts came in from Dukes living in 46 states.

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by Ciara Brennan

Published: Thursday, March 7, 2024

Last Updated: Thursday, March 14, 2024

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