The Erickson Alumni Center has played host to many West Virginia University unions, reunions, birthday celebrations, conferences, meetings and other special events. Since opening its doors in October 2008, alumni and friends have found a true alumni home in what has been touted as one of the best alumni facilities in the country.

Loyal Mountaineers are stepping up to do their part to ensure this facility continues to be a focal point of the Evansdale campus. As part of the University’s comprehensive campaign, A State of Minds: The Campaign for West Virginia’s University, several graduates have generously provided gifts totaling $140,000 to help retire the remaining debt of The Erickson Alumni Center, one of three priorities established by the WVU Alumni Association and WVU Foundation for the campaign.

James “Jim” and Debbie Herndon, Richard “Rick” Pill, and an anonymous donor pledged gifts to the state-of-the-art, 48,000-square foot alumni center.

“WVU is fortunate to have a dedicated, loyal alumni base that continues to give back to the university so that it can grow and prosper,” said Stephen L. Douglas, president & CEO, WVU Alumni Association. “The gifts provided by Rick, Jim, Debbie, and others, will enable us to pay off the debt on our building and allow us to further develop programs and services to meet the ever-changing needs of our growing alumni base. This is a wonderful way to kick off our campaign,”

The Herndons live in Mineral, Va. Jim, a 1970 graduate of the Benjamin M. Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources, served as president of Sigma Chi fraternity and was a member of Mountain Honorary as a student at WVU. He and Debbie are members of the Marmaduke H. Dent Society, and Jim served on the Statler College’s Enterprise Advisory Committee. Jim also served on the WVU Alumni Association Board of Directors for five years and continued to lead as chairman of the Alumni Center Building Committee. In this role, he was liaison between the Alumni Association and March-Westin Construction to ensure construction flowed smoothly on the new alumni center.

Pill graduated from WVU in 1973 with a bachelor’s degree in business administration and returned in 1974 to earn his law degree. Since 1977, Pill has been a partner with Pill & Pill law firm in Martinsburg, W.Va. Pill is a member of the Woodburn Circle Society with a long history of service to WVU through various councils and committees, including serving as a member of the WVU Alumni Association Board of Directors and WVU’s Athletic Council. Pill was named outstanding alumnus in 2009 and remains actively involved with the Eastern Panhandle Chapter of the WVU Alumni Association.

In addition to retiring the building debt, the WVU Alumni Association has identified two additional goals for the fundraising campaign: create a building maintenance fund for the alumni center and establish an endowment that will assist in developing programs for national and international outreach, enhancing on- and off-campus programs, and assisting the association’s constituent groups in engaging fellow alumni.

The $750 million campaign was publically launched in June. It is being conducted by the WVU Foundation on behalf of the University and runs through December 2015. Alumni and friends interested in giving opportunities for the Alumni Association may contact Devanna Corley at 304-293-0971.



CONTACT: Tara Curtis, WVU Alumni Association

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