In the foyer of Oklahoma Baptist University’s most iconic building, Raley Chapel, hangs a plaque with some of the most memorable quotes from former OBU President Dr. John Wesley Raley. In 1949, OBU was in the midst of unprecedented enrollment growth. President Raley, keenly aware of the pressing need to look to the future, emphatically proposed a bold plan. “Institutions must grow or perish. In the drama of world storm, we propose to keep moving … We have a program for tomorrow.”
The idea of legacy was important to Dr. Raley. He knew then what we inherently know today – the legacy of a university is not only that it shapes and molds students of today, but it also transforms the lives of future generations of global leaders.
In this issue of the OBU Magazine, you will read about legacy. From OBU alumni to faculty to the individuals who continue to invest in our University, the story of OBU is in fact a story of legacy.
The cover story invites you to be a part of a family that knows about legacy. For four generations, the McCabe family has been represented on Bison Hill. Given that tradition, there is no doubt that the fifth and sixth generations of the family will find their way to Shawnee in the future. Grateful for the impact of OBU, the McCabe family has established a scholarship in order to help other families experience the heritage and impact of OBU. Verne and Rosemary McCabe are kind and supportive alumni and friends, and we are thankful to have the opportunity to honor their family’s OBU legacy.
We also give thanks for the life of Max Brattin, whose teaching and service impacted countless students on Bison Hill. Professor Brattin understood the value of legacy by gifting more than $1 million during his life and through his estate for endowment purposes at OBU. These resources leave an incredible legacy for the Paul Dickinson College of Business, Warren M. Angell College of Fine Arts, and campus health and recreation initiatives.
As alumni, donors and friends of the University, you have invested in the ongoing legacy of OBU. At the beginning of December 2014, I was able to report to President Whitlock and the OBU community that the $42 million goal for the Vision for a New Century Capital Campaign had been surpassed. We on Bison Hill have been overwhelmed by this incredible outpouring of financial support these past three years from those who love and cherish our wonderful University.
However, just as Dr. Raley recognized in 1949, we dare not rest on what has been accomplished. We continue to look to God for guidance and wisdom in our planning, decisions and actions. Three vital projects – the expansion and renovation of Wood Science Building, the renovation of Ford Music Hall and the construction of a new Student Services Center – remain unfunded. With two years remaining in this current campaign, we are confident we will see these projects through to completion through the generosity and support of alumni and supporters just like you. In addition to the VNC Campaign projects, the Revive the Roof
Campaign continues to move ahead, with plans to continue the legacy of Raley Chapel by replacing its roof tiles this summer.
Legacy at OBU is more than adding buildings, hiring incredible faculty or having a championship athletic program. It is daring to boldly live our mission: transforming lives through academic excellence at this Christian liberal arts university, integrating every academic discipline with our faith, engaging a diverse world with our minds and hearts, and living worthy of the high calling of God in Christ. As Dr. Raley proposed 68 years ago, “Let us arise and build for the long future.” Thank you for standing with us as we continue to grow this incredible legacy.
To Our Young Alumni
If you graduated from OBU in 2000 or later, you will want to take advantage of another legacy-building program. Generous donors have offered to match your gift to any project up to $1,000 per year for the next three years. In a short time, more than $12,000 has been provided through this Bison 4 Bison Challenge. By giving during this challenge period, you can double your giving, and expand the legacy and impact of your alma mater.
I am pleased to announce the launch of a new giving platform. This updated feature makes giving an online gift to OBU simple and secure. Read about this new system on page 28 or visit okbu.edu/giving.