University of Vermont


Alums Donate Total of $1.2m in Planned Gifts to LGBTQA Center

Students Speak About Impact of Gifts

A video of Benjamin giving his speech at the LGBTQA Center Special Announcement during Homecoming 2015 to thank the generous donors and explain why their gifts are so important to the University and the students the Center serves.

Everyone at the special Foundation announcement the morning of October 2nd were thrilled to hear that two alumni and their partners, along with a third alumnus have included the LGBTQA Center among their bequests for an estimated total of $1.2 million. Dr. Bill Meezan (Class of '67) and his husband Michael Brittenback donated $875K. This was rounded up another $125K by Dr. Michael Upton (MD Class of '94). Sanford Friedman (Class of '73) and his husband Jerry Hipps donated $200K making for a total of $1.2 million in support of the LGBTQA Center. We are so appreciative, and we can't thank Bill and Mike, Sanford and Jerry, and Michael enough for their generous donations! 

What does all this mean for the LGBTQA Center? A lot! While these bequests will not be realized until some unknown future date, they serve today as powerful expressions about the continued importance of the LGBTQA Center's work as well as a strong votes of confidence about the quality of the work being done by the center. As undergraduate Ben Carmichael Kennedy said in his public comments about the gifts: "The size of our community and our need for these resources continues to grow while our budget has continued to shrink. " Gifts like these, "make it seem possible that some day we might realize our dream to have our own building." It is wonderful to know that among UVM's LGBTQA alumni there are people who want to ensure that UVM students have the support they need to have the best possible all around student experience. 

This holiday season the LGBTQA Center will be reaching out to over eight hundred LGBTQA alumni inviting them to connect with the LGBTQA Center and the new LGBTQA Alumni Affinity group. We hope to bring you more exciting news in the future as our alumni community continues to grow.