Canton Online

Canton College Foundation Update - June 14, 2022

Greetings, Board Members!

I hope you are all enjoying the summer. I wanted to give you a quick update on a few important items.

First, congratulations are in order for Jamie Burgess and the entire Foundation team for putting together a thoroughly enjoyable and successful Alumni Reunion Weekend. This was Jamie’s first time spearheading the entire event AND our first live Reunion since 2019 – so it’s not like there was any pressure. 😊😊

Jamie, Beth, Geoffrey, Sara, Sandy, Whitney and Kolby did an outstanding job in organizing a multitude of events throughout the weekend, attended and enjoyed by almost 200 alumni, spouses and friends. Highlights included the Dana Hall Grand Re-opening Ceremony, the Alumni Barbecue, the Half-Century Club Induction Ceremony, the Annual Alumni Association meeting, campus tours and faculty presentations, and of course the Hall of Fame Induction and Alumni Awards Presentation.

The programs for the Dana Hall re-opening, Half-Century Club Induction and the Hall of Fame awards are all attached to this email.
We were delighted to have a number of Foundation Board members in attendance for the Hall of Fame celebration. Congratulations again to Jenn Stevenson ’88, who received the Distinguished Alumni Award, Anne Williams ’78 and Dave Gerlach ’83, inducted into the HOF as part of the Class of 2021, and Ornella Parker ’14, one of two Outstanding Young Alumni Awards. The HOF program includes the full list of awardees.

We are grateful to SO many people!! Here goes! Special thanks to:
- All Alumni Board members who lent a hand and participated in various events
- President Szafran and Kelly Obermeyer, who presented the awards and made all attendees feel welcome
- Randy Sieminski, our emcee extraordinaire!
- Jordyn Sweeney, who provided critical support to Jamie
- Michaela Young, Amber Baines, Lenore Vanderzee and Liz Brown, who all helped put together the Dana Hall re-opening event
- Nick Wildey, Kirk Jones and Lucas Craig, who prepared faculty presentations
- Ryan Lee and Kody Burwell, the students who provided campus tours
- Sean Conklin and the College Association team for delicious food and meals
- Mike McCormick, Marty Avery and the campus facilities staff who prepared the buildings and made the grounds beautiful for us
- Megan Warren and Amanda Rowley, drivers extraordinaire!
- University Police, who we’re very grateful were NOT needed during the weekend
- All other campus staff who assisted throughout the weekend

It truly takes a village to run a successful Alumni Reunion Weekend. Thanks to all for a job well done!

I told you earlier this month about a couple of staff transitions; now we have one more to report. Sandy Walker, our Administrative Assistant, is leaving us to go over to the Campus Ready Center. Sandy will interact more directly with students in this new position, assisting international students with the transition to becoming college students here at SUNY Canton. Sh e is really excited about it, and though it will be a terrible loss for the Foundation, it is definitely a win for the College and for our students. Please let Sandy know how much she will be missed!

With two weeks left to go in the fiscal year, the Foundation has raised over $2.1 million dollars, which is more than double this year’s goal of $1 million. This was accomplished through the focused efforts of the entire Foundation team working together. Part of this year’s success is based on a bequest from Raymond Modell ’62. The gift is split between Ray’s endowed scholarship and the Canton Fund – which means that the Canton Fund has also surpassed its goal of $400,000 and currently stands at more than $791,000. This is the best Canton Fund performance since FY18.
This year we raised more than $1 million for 77 different endowed funds. This included the creation of 15 new endowments, the most ever in a single year. Going back to the year 2000, this was the third highest amount raised for the endowment in the past 22 years. The only two higher years were FY07, when Joel Canino and John and Netta Halford established endowed scholarships, and FY19, when the Bobbi Butler Burnham estate gift was received.

For our Foundation, any donor who gives $10,000 or more in a single year is a big deal. This year we received $10,000 or more from 14 donors and $25,000 or more from an additional 13. For comparison purposes, in the ten prior years, the average number of donors giving $10,000 or above has been 18. This year it is 27. Thank you to our generous donors!

We work to retain current donors and add new ones each year. Among our loyal donors, we have 65 individuals who have given every year for at least 20 years. Our most steadfast donor is Chuck Goolden, who has not missed a single year of giving to the Foundation for 46 years. This is an absolutely remarkable feat, and we are incredibly grateful to Chuck for his unwavering support of SUNY Canton and our students.

We offer our condolences to the family and friends of Mr. Michael J. Danehy, who passed away on Saturday, June 11, 2022.
Mr. Michael Danehy served the College for more than 32 years, holding various positions. In 1963, he was appointed as the Dean of the Canino School of Engineering Technology (then known as the Engineering Technology Division). In 1990, he shifted his role and returned to the classroom to teach in the mathematics department, until he retired in 1995. His service to the College did not end after retirement though, as Mr. Danehy returned to serve as Interim Director of the Physical Plant. During his tenure, Mr. Danehy was also part of a five-member technical institute planning team to develop laboratories for technical institutes in Syria, and in 2013, he was inducted into the College-wide Hall of Fame.

His funeral will be this Friday at Saint Kateri Tekakwitha church in the Yorktown area.

We are putting together Recognition Weekend, which will be held on Saturday, September 24. This will include the annual Scholarship Luncheon, followed by a dinner to honor the 2022 Hall of Fame inductees, Distinguished Alumni and Outstanding Young Alumni. These honorees have been chosen and will be announced soon.

We are hoping to be able to unveil the new Hall of Fame display on that weekend. The new Hall of Fame will be a stunning display featuring modern state-of-the-art technology. This will make the photos and bios of Hall of Fame members more noticeable for students and visiting alumni, and it will make the Hall of Fame fully accessible online to all alumni, wherever they may be located.