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Alumni Shatter Previous Record, Raise $111,941 for Third Annual Days of Giving

Posted: March 9, 2020

Over the past weekend the alumni of Thomas Aquinas College came out in force to support their alma mater for the Third Annual Alumni Days of Giving — boosting their giving by 19.1 percent from the previous year and helping to raise $111,941 in just two days.

“Last year the alumni quickly exceeded the $35,000 in matching gifts that members of our Board of Governors had provided to get the event started,” says Paul J. O’Reilly (’84), vice president for development. “So this year Governor Tom Krause and his wife, Cathryn, joined by fellow Governor Robert Barbera, raised the bar, promising to match all alumni donations up to $40,000 — and the alumni eclipsed that total, too.”

Alumni were within $1,000 of reaching the $40,000 mark just halfway through the second day of the event, timed to end on March 7, the Feast of St. Thomas Aquinas. “With 12 hours to go, we were almost there,” says Dr. O’Reilly. “Then an anonymous alumni couple stepped forward with a $10,000 gift of their own, hoping it would inspire still more generosity.”

Inspire, it did.

“At that point, we challenged alumni to go for $100,000, and they rose to the occasion,” says Dr. O’Reilly. “The gifts came in steadily until midnight and beyond, with some late additions arriving over the course of Sunday and even today.”

As of this writing, some 324 households and priests have collectively given $71,941— a 19.1 percent increase from the 2019 Alumni Day of Giving. Combined with the governors’ matching gift, that amounts to $111,941 in support of the College’s Annual Fund.

“I am humbled by the outpouring of generosity I have witnessed over the last few days,” says Dr. O’Reilly. “It is a testament to the gratitude our alumni hold for their Catholic liberal education, which was made possible by many benefactors over many years. They are now paying that gift forward to a new generation of students on two coasts.”