East Stroudsburg, PA – The East Stroudsburg University Foundation welcomed more than 125 guests to its Campaign Celebration and President’s Gala held on Saturday, September 24, 2011, at the Warren E. ’55 and Sandra Hoeffner Science and Technology Center on the campus of East Stroudsburg University.
The celebration brought together major supporters of Today’s Dream, Tomorrow’s Reality, the Comprehensive Campaign of East Stroudsburg University, and heralded the milestones of the effort which surpassed its $15 million goal by 137 percent. In total, the first of its kind campaign for ESU received more than $20.5 million in commitments from alumni, friends and supporters of the University.
Among those who spoke at the Campaign Celebration were ESU President Dr. Robert J. Dillman; L. Patrick Ross, chairman of the ESU Council of Trustees; Christian Steber, chairman of the ESU Foundation Board; Sam and Linda Lee Niedbala, co-chairs of Today’s Dream, Tomorrow’s Reality; Frank Falso, president and CEO of the ESU Foundation and Betty Russo, Vice President of Development for the ESU Foundation.
“How inspiring it was to see so many stakeholders gather at this beautiful event to celebrate this significant milestone – the largest Comprehensive Campaign in the University’s history,” said Frank Falso, president and CEO of the East Stroudsburg University Foundation. “Throughout the entire event, one could feel the spirit of philanthropy and so many attendees spoke of how contagious that spirit was during the entire eight-year campaign.”
ESU launched Today’s Dream, Tomorrow’s Reality in June 2003 after a meticulous assessment of its strengths and needs. Recognizing it could no longer rely on the Commonwealth to fully fund its initiatives, the University identified, and successfully surpassed its fundraising goals, in five key areas of focus within the campaign:
- The Warren E. ’55 and Sandra Hoeffner Science and Technology Center
The spectacular 124,000 square foot facility features the McMunn Planetarium, the Schisler Wildlife Museum, an auditorium, laboratory and classroom space.
- Athletic Facilities
New turf at Gregory-Douds Field at Eiler-Martin Stadium, the Dr. Jack Piatt ’61 President’s Box, an expanded track and stadium lighting.
- Fine and Performing Arts Endowment
The establishment of an endowment for the Fine and Performing Arts program to ensure ESU remains a cultural centerpiece of the community.
- The ESU Foundation Annual Fund
Bolstering the Annual Fund enables the University to provide students with immediate benefits such as technical advancements and more.
- Endowed Scholarships
Strengthening the University’s ability to offer more scholarships with a commitment to all students who seek a quality education.
Leading Today’s Dream, Tomorrow’s Reality were Campaign Co-Chairs Sam ’82 and Linda Lee ’83 Niedbala, both graduates of ESU.
“We cannot thank the Niedbalas enough for their dedication to Today’s Dream, Tomorrow’s Reality. Their commitment of leadership, service and significant support for the Niedbala Auditorium helped bring this magnificent effort to a triumphant close,” said Falso. “Today’s Dream, Tomorrow’s Reality brought out the best in the ESU community, its alumni and friends. Through diligence and hard work, sight was never lost to the end goal – to improve the college experience for each and every student today, and those in the years to come.”
Photo caption: Leading the festivities during the September 24 Campaign Celebration and President’s Gala were, from left, Betty Russo, vice president of development for the ESU Foundation, Sam and Linda Lee Niedbala, co-chairs of the campaign, Christian Steber, chairman of the ESU Foundation Board of Directors, Rosann Dillman, Dr. Robert J. Dillman, president of ESU, L. Patrick Ross, chairman of the ESU Council of Trustees, and Frank Falso, president and CEO of the ESU Foundation.
The mission of the ESU Foundation is to foster and promote the growth, progress and general welfare of East Stroudsburg University of Pennsylvania, and to solicit, receive and administer, and make gifts and donations for such purposes.
Contact Caryn Goebel, Communications Manager, at (570) 422-3332.