Today’s world makes it easier than
ever to connect with people. Technology, social media, and information sharing
accelerate everything. Yet it can still be difficult for people in the Seminary
Relations Department to meet the right person at the right time in the right
Your introductions matter. “We can’t know who we don’t know. But our alumni/ae
have great networks through their churches. They know people looking to make
gifts. They can play a major role in introducing these people to us so they can
help the Seminary,” said Jack McAnlis, director of planned giving.
For example, in the 1970s, Ken Wildrick (M.Div., 1958; Th.M., 1962) was the
minister at the Community Congregational Church in Short Hills, New Jersey. One
of Wildrick’s congregants and friends, Elwin Smith, asked for advice on making
a gift to help educate future ministers. Wildrick introduced his friend—whom
everyone called “E”— to the Seminary and a legacy was started. Read more about their friendship.
That introduction led to the Elwin H. Smith Scholarship Endowment Fund. It’s
now worth $2.63 million and has helped 104 students since 1998. Recipients for the 2010-2011 academic year include: M.Div. juniors John
Schneider, Kenneth Lucas, Alex Turpin, Emily Mitchell; middler Wayne Elder;
seniors Daniel Pedersen, Andrew Harmon, Karen Rohrer; and first-year Ph.D.
student Courtney Faith Palmbush.
“Ken was an ambassador and helped us extend our circle of friends,” said
McAnlis. “Who do you know, that we don’t?”
For information about ways to best introduce others to the Seminary, contact
Rosemary Mitchell, vice president of Seminary relations
in the Seminary Relations Office.