President Jim Collins
(’84) announced today that Loras College has received a $1.5 million donation from William “Bill” (’64) and Kathleen Lynch
, of Prospect Heights, Ill., toward the Inspiring Lives and Leadership: The Loras Legacy
campaign. The contribution is comprised of a $750,000 cash donation to help with the Keane Hall renovation effort and $750,000 in an irrevocable estate pledge that will go to the endowment.
“The values and lifelong lessons learned, the classmates, the dedicated faculty and the overall ‘experience’ has forever had an indelible effect on Loras men and women, myself included. I am proud to be a Loras College graduate and attribute much of my growth and success to that ‘Loras experience,’” said Bill. “I am especially proud of the progress, accomplishments and national recognition Loras has received in recent years. Kathleen and I are pleased to support this campaign to ensure the Loras Legacy continues to have a lasting impact on graduates and society for years to come.”
The $750,000 cash donation is a part of a three-to-one match for the College’s Keane Hall renovation project; for every $3 donated toward the project, Lynch will generously make a $1 match up to $750,000. The project is estimated at $2.5 million and will include a renovation to Keane Hall’s main entrance along with the third and fourth floors providing additional classroom and faculty office space.
“Bill has advocated for and supported Loras in virtually every possible way. It has been his longstanding desire to see Loras’ business program move into elite status. This challenge gift will allow Loras to develop premier faculty office and classroom space to enhance the academic delivery of our business program while also affording students from all disciplines to benefit from the upgrades. Bill and Kathleen have demonstrated loyalty and passion for Loras which is both contagious and inspiring,” said Collins.
Bill graduated from Loras College in 1964 with a bachelor’s degree in business administration and earned his MBA from University of Iowa two years later. He began his career at Leo Burnett Advertising as a trainee and media buyer and moved through the ranks to become President and CEO of both Leo Burnett Company Inc. and Leo Burnett Worldwide Inc. After a successful 31 years in advertising with one of the largest agencies in the world, Bill retired in 1997 to assist numerous business, civic and religious organizations in the Chicagoland area including The Big Shoulders Fund of Chicago.
Bill received the Distinguished Alumni Award for Professional Achievements and Contributions made to Loras College in 1992. From 1993-2003, Bill was on the Loras Board of Regents, serving as chair from 2000-2003. He funded the Lynch Learning Center, a portion of the Lynch McCarthy Apartment Complex on campus and headed the College’s Belief Unfolding
campaign. Bill is currently a member of the President’s Advisory Council and is a steering committee member for the Inspiring Lives and Leadership: The Loras Legacy
campaign. Two of Bill’s daughters, Kelly and Maureen, both graduated from Loras; Kelly in 1988 with a degree in marketing and English literature and Maureen in 1989 with a degree in business.
Launched on October 10, 2013, the $75 million Inspiring Lives and Leadership: The Loras Legacy
campaign is the largest fundraising campaign in the 175-year history of the college. In addition to raising funds to support student aid and faculty/staff professional development, the campaign seeks funds to build upon the launch of its MBA program, business analytics initiative and other academic programs. As of May 13, 2014, the campaign has raised nearly $55 million through more than 15,700 donors.