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West Liberty University Foundation To Honor Donors

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The West Liberty University Foundation will honor this homecoming weekend a group of people who, through their philanthropy, have made a significant contribution to the university and its mission.

On top of six Impact of Philanthropy Awards — given to donors who have given $25,000 or more in the 2021 fiscal year — the university will honor Gary and Flip West with the Lifetime Impact of Philanthropy Award.

“The WLU Foundation is committed to building a culture of philanthropy and is pleased to celebrate the impact that private donors have on our campus and in the lives of our students,” said Angie Zambito-Hill, executive director of the WLU Foundation.

The Wests, who reside both in Wheeling and Naples, Florida, both are WLU alumni and avid fans of Hilltopper athletics. The Gary E. West College of Business was so named after the West’s major gift to the college’s scholarship program. Other major gifts the couple are responsible for are the West Family Stadium and West Family Athletic Complex.

“It’s not often that you find donors who make such a tremendous impact on a university,” Zambito-Hill said. “The Wests directly help students through scholarships, they have enhanced facilities through updates and funded major construction projects. They are our constant friends and advocates.”

The Impact of Philanthropy recipients will be Belmont Savings Bank, Thomas Cervone and Susan Creswell, Main Street Bank, E. Alex and Valerie Paris, WesBanco, and Kristina Williams and James Taibi.

Belmont Savings Bank’s donation led to the building of the Belmont Savings Bank Indoor Practice Facility. Cervone and Creswell, his wife, endowed a new scholarship to support students majoring in theater.

Main Street Bank is responsible for the gift of a new scoreboard for the West Family Athletic Complex. The Parises provided a financial gift that allowed for the completion of the Coach Vince Monseau Wrestling Room renovation.

WesBanco backed the first-ever endowed professorship at WLU, the Kenneth B. McMillen Distinguished Professorship in American Studies in the College of Liberal and Creative Arts.

Williams and Taibi completed a commitment to grow the Roland E. “Rollie” Williams International Center and fund its activities. The center is named after Kristina’s father and longtime professor Roland E. “Rollie” Williams.

The new awards will be distributed during the Recognition Banquet that takes place on Friday in the renovated Wall of Honor alcove in the Paul N. Elbin Library. For more information or to obtain tickets for the Recognition Dinner, please visit wlufoundation.org/awards or contact the WLU Foundation office at 304-336-5635.

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