Michelle Martin

Daniels alumni give to the University faithfully year after year

There isn’t an exact definition for a loyal giver. Many alumni and friends of the University of Denver are extremely generous. Yet, there are a group of donors who are amazingly faithful, giving year after year. Would you define loyal as 10 years, maybe 20? The Daniels College of Business has at least 30 donors who have given to the University every single year for 25 years or more. Some up to 40 years in a row.

Michelle Martin (BSAcc 1977) is one of them. Martin lives in the Washington metro area and works as an accountant for the U.S. Federal courts; she has given consecutively for 26 years.

“I’m certainly a strong supporter of education, at any level, up to the highest level,” Martin said. “I want to make sure that people who don’t have resources can afford to go to college. I just think it’s a benefit to the entire country that we have a well-educated population.”

Lowell and Dianna Hare

As a result, Martin often gives to scholarship funds to help students. Lowell Hare (BSBA 1972) shares a similar passion. He and his wife set up a scholarship fund in their name that supports marketing, finance and accounting students.

Hare, president and CEO of Journal Center Corporation, is so passionate about helping students because he was once a scholarship recipient. He attended Northeastern Junior College in Sterling, Colorado, where he was on a basketball scholarship. But, a coach told him it was time to focus more on his academics than sports. School of Accountancy Professor Wayne Shroyer offered Hare a chance to attend DU. If Hare committed to DU, Shroyer would get Hare a job in the resident halls, a spot on the basketball team and a scholarship. It was an opportunity Hare couldn’t pass up.

“That’s how it happened; he found me, I didn’t find the University,” Hare said. “After I met him, I did some research and talked to some people that were more knowledgeable and found out that the School of Accountancy was one of the best in the region.”

Hare went on to be a graduate teaching assistant in the program, getting most of his tuition paid for.

“That’s the only way I would have stayed and gone to graduate school. I did not need that extra year; I was going to go to work at Arthur Andersen, whether I went as an undergraduate or graduate didn’t matter. But, Shroyer was a very persuasive person. He said, ‘You will be a graduate assistant next year and your job over there for Arthur Andersen will wait one year.’”

Mike West

Mike West also went to work for Arthur Andersen after graduating from DU with his bachelor’s in accountancy in 1975. He spent 28 years with the firm and is now the CFO of Denver-based Cheyenne Capital. Like Hare, West (BSBA 1975, MBA 1981) feels compelled to give back because DU gave to him.

“I always felt really appreciative that DU helped me with half of my tuition,” he said.

West has not only given financially for 39 years in a row, he gives back with his time. A current member of the University of Denver Board of Trustees, West also serves on the School of Accountancy Advisory Board and was the president of the University of Denver Alumni Council. He is the 2003 recipient of the University of Denver’s Randolph P. McDonough Award for Service to Alumni.

“It just became a matter of something I just felt strongly about,” West said. “You need to give back to the place that helped you so much from a career standpoint.”

Hare, too, has given much of his time to DU, serving on the School of Accountancy Advisory Board for more than 25 years and the Daniels Executive Advisory Board for more than 15 years. Hare received the School of Accountancy Alumnus of the Year award in 1992 and the Daniels College of Business Alumni Award of Excellence in 2014.

“This kind of consistent giving is invaluable to us,” said Aimee Mandolini, executive director of Development for Daniels. “We are so grateful to all our donors, especially our loyal alumni, parents and friends whose steadfast financial support ensures the College’s continued ability to attract the best minds—students and faculty—and elevate the student experience.”

To donate or find opportunities for engagement, visit the Daniels website.