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The Hollins Campaign for Women Who Are Going Places




More Donor Love Stories

Louis Rubin

Confetti showered down on Louis D. Rubin Jr., professor and mentor to generations of Hollins educated writers, when it was announced that a fund had been established to name a seminar room in Swannanoa Hall in Rubin's honor and endow The Hollins Critic which he helped found. Thanks to lead donors Ted and Carol Bayne Price '66 and many other devotees of Rubin, the funds were contributed to support the esteemed literary journal and the room in Swannanoa, home of the creative writing program. Rubin started the creative writing program at Hollins more than fifty years ago. The gift also funded creation of a wall on the first floor of Swannanoa Hall, which lists all the Hollins writers-in-residence.

High School Teachers

Mary Bernhardt Wolfe Decker '58 and her husband, James, established The Decker Endowment, which funds both the Hollins University Teaching Award and the Hollins Teachers Scholarship for students planning to pursue careers in teaching. The award recognizes secondary school educators who have devoted their lives to preparing students to achieve and excel in a higher education setting, and Hollins seniors are invited to nominate the teachers who inspired them or contributed significantly to their intellectual and personal growth.


"Come play with us" is one of the taglines of the Hollins theatre department, whose talented students perform regularly to sold out audiences and rave reviews, and whose accomplished faculty give students a strong foundation in every aspect of theatre production. Yet the theatre building, which dates from 1924, has not kept pace with the professional-quality productions, including the 2007 production of a student play which was a finalist for the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival. Elizabeth Hall McDonnell '62 and her husband, James, took a great interest in the theatre facility's pressing needs. Thanks to a $3 million commitment from the James S. McDonnell Family Foundation, the theatre is undergoing a comprehensive renovation. The gift will transform theatre programming and other performing arts offerings on the Hollins campus with increased accessibility; new electric rigging system for hanging lights, scenery, and drapery; air conditioning; flood control; and new lighting, sprinkler system, paint, and carpeting.


"Hollins shaped my life and opened doors inviting my mind to explore. I want other young women to have the same opportunities for growth and self discovery. Especially in these times they need help to do that." So says Elizabeth "Betty" Peace Stall '53, who, for the second time, established a scholarship for students wishing to attend Hollins. The Elizabeth Peace Stall Endowed Scholarship is secured with Stall's $500,000 campaign gift. The Stall Scholarship is completely open and may be awarded on the basis of financial need, merit, or both to a student of any discipline. During the previous campaign Stall established the Frances Peace Graham '36 Scholarship, in honor of her aunt, to provide need-based financial aid to students with community service experience and a strong potential to contribute to Hollins’ student service programs.





Allison Virginia Smith graduated from Hollins with a B.A. in biology in 1938 and made her first gift to Hollins - $5 - in 1939. Thirty-odd years ago she put Hollins in her will, and when she died in 2007 she bequeathed more than $2 million to Hollins to endow funds to support faculty salaries and student scholarships. Smith worked as a laboratory assistant for a few years and volunteered at a hospital. She was not a terribly active volunteer for Hollins, but she maintained her ties to Hollins and lifelong friends made here and she was a consistent donor, gradually increasing from $5 and $10 to hundreds and thousands annually until her ultimate gift.


Hollins is proud of its distinguished professors, who are recognized not only for excellence in teaching, but also for their commitment to building a vibrant educational community. Virginia Frazier '98 honored her professors' commitment to their students when she established the Virginia S. Frazier Endowment for Psychology Faculty Development and Student Research and a teaching laboratory for the psychology department. Her gifts provide outstanding opportunities for research and conference participation for students and faculty alike, as well as the most sophisticated equipment for collaborative research and experiential learning. One of Frazier's mentors, Dr. Randy Flory, has drawn national attention for his study of Seasonal Affective Disorder. His work, which found that bright light is the treatment of choice for SAD, was presented at the American Psychological Society. Also, a team of faculty and students, including Flory, received the Best Undergraduate Poster Award at the Virginia Psychological Association conference in 2010.

Presser Hall

A $500,000 challenge grant from the William R. Kenan, Jr. Charitable Trust inspired other donors and resulted in the establishment of a $1 million endowment for the music department to be used for replacement of pianos, an electronic music laboratory, and touring funds for the concert choir. The Kenan Trust, a long-time supporter of Hollins, also made a campaign gift of $250,000 to endow The William R. Kenan, Jr. Leadership Fund to bring visiting speakers to campus to enhance the Batten Leadership Institute and another $100,000 to help transition the Batten Leadership Institute into the academic curriculum.

The 1926 Presser Hall was renovated in two phases during the campaign, thanks to the generosity of the Presser Foundation, the Mary Morton Parsons Foundation, the Roller Bottimore Foundation, the Titmus Foundation, a private Richmond foundation, and many generous individuals who love music and want to see it thrive at Hollins. Hollins’ Presser music building holds special significance because it was the first such building constructed under Theodore Presser's authorization and completed during his lifetime.


The Hollins riding program continues to be a shining distinction at Hollins. The campaign brought Hollins a number of fine quality horses and significant gifts to strengthen the program. Louise Dudley Wood Macfarlane '77 chose Hollins because of its equestrian program. She made her campaign gift to establish the Dudley Macfarlane '77 Equestrian Fund for program operations and maintenance.

Lucy MacMillan Stitzer '82 and her husband, Mark, made their gift to establish the Guy Burkholder Scholarship Fund in memory of Guy Burkholder, former director of the Hollins Riding Program. Stitzer was one of many riders who were strongly influenced by Burkholder's expertise and ethical standards. An accomplished rider, Stitzer remembers being " at the barn every free moment of every day." She eventually became president of the Riding Club.

When Josephine Drake Foley '70 learned she was dying of cancer, she contacted Hollins about making a bequest. After working for a small private school in her area, she felt strongly about supporting an institution like Hollins. A former rider, she wanted the scholarship to be given to a rider whenever possible. She enjoyed her association with the riding program and saw this as a way to make a difference.


Hollins internship program has long been successful thanks to the connections and support of alumnae. Hebe Dowling Murphy '64 has a passionate belief in the importance of career preparation through hands-on experience. Thanks to Hebe's generous gift to establish a competitive internship awards program, more students than ever are able to take advantage of the career-building and often life-changing experience of an internship.





Lorimer and Ellis


The Lonely-hearts Club: Unglamorous Projects Find Devoted Donors

It's not that people don't understand the importance of deferred maintenance, HVAC, sidewalks, and roofs. It's just that a campaign offers opportunities that are a lot sexier - academic chairs, scholarships, buildings. Who wants her name on a water boiler or an air chiller? Well, Hollins is fortunate to have several donors who were honored to be associated with projects that would save Hollins money, bring comfort to many, and reduce the carbon footprint.

Miriam "Mim" Hayllar Farmakis '67 and her husband, Tom, heard Hollins wanted to install a new boiler that not only would supply heat and hot water to the campus but provide large-scale environmental benefits and pay, for itself in reduced energy costs within two years. They said, "That's where we want to put our money." The Farmakises derived so much satisfaction from their boiler gift that they subsequently called Hollins and said they wanted to make an additional gift to replace old, dilapidated window air conditioning units around campus with more energy efficient ones.

When Starr Moore '68 made a six-figure pledge to deferred maintenance, she told President Gray she wanted Hollins to "use it for things nobody else would give money for." She also stipulated that any project she funded should be done in an environmentally responsible "green" way. She was happy to attach her name to new chilled water cooling tower used to cool and provide humidity control to many buildings on campus.

Trustee Linda Koch Lorimer '74 and her husband, Charley Ellis, directed a substantial portion of their generous campaign giving to deferred maintenance, a new roof for the Dana Science Building, and a rainwater collection system.

unconditional love
Unconditional Love

Several Hollins trustees, Wyndham Robertson '58, Lisa Valk Long '72, and Brooke Morrow '78 notable among them, showed their love for Hollins by giving to unrestricted endowment, meaning their gifts are invested with the pooled endowment with the earnings directed to areas most needing support.

Going into the campaign, increasing Hollins' endowment was identified as the most pressing goal, representing 58 percent of the original $100 million campaign. When the campaign target was raised to $125 million, the endowment goal increased to $78 million or 62 percent of the total effort. In the end, Hollins raised $60.6 million for endowment. Within the $78 million endowment goal was a $19 million sub-goal for unrestricted endowment.

Before the campaign, nearly all of Hollins' endowment was restricted for specific uses, such as scholarships or faculty positions, and not available for general or emergency needs. The trustees felt this gap left Hollins unable to respond quickly to the changing demands of today's academic environment.

Thanks to Robertson, Long, Morrow, along with other trustees Clark Baruch '68, Susan Barth Dobbs '63, Alexandra Trower Lindsey '86, Suzanne Allen Redpath '69, Anne Wycliffe Goodloe McClure '68, and other generous alumnae, $10 million was raised for endowment without strings. A few donors provided even more flexibility by directing that their gifts go to a quasi endowment, which means they function like an endowment but may be totally expended at any time at the discretion of the board if needed.

Our Secret Admirers

Anonymous Donors Provide More
Than $36 Million

They don't want the limelight. They don't want the accolades. They just want Hollins to succeed and thrive. Anonymous alumnae and friends supported the campaign with dramatic, if quiet, professions of their love for Hollins and women's education. Through their generosity, our financial foundation is stronger and learning opportunities for both undergraduate and graduate students are greatly enhanced. Because many of the gifts are for endowment or campus preservation, future generations will also reap the harvest of their generosity. We are forever grateful to the incredibly generous and insightful secret admirers who made this campaign so successful.