Successful “531 Challenge” raises more than $623,000 for academics

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., June 9, 2014 — Drury University’s “531 Challenge” fundraising campaign exceeded its participation goal and raised more than $623,000.

The 531 Challenge kicked off April 15th with the goal of 531 donors giving at any level before the last day of May – 5/31 on the calendar. Drury alumnus and longtime supporter Larry O’Reilly committed to a challenge gift of $25,000 if the participation goal was met. Drury exceeded the goal, with a total of 546 donors.

The contributions will go to the Drury Fund for general academic needs and scholarships, as well as designated department needs.

“The 531 Campaign is different in that it seeks a total number of donors, rather than a specific dollar amount,” said Dianne Johnson, Vice President for Development and Alumni Relations. “This is all about participation. We wanted alums and donors to know that every contribution – no matter the size – can make a difference for current and future Drury students.”

A breakdown of donor categories bears this out. The largest donor group was alumni, which accounted for more than half of the contributions. Others who participated included current and former parents, as well as 41 students. Corporate donors, faculty, staff and friends of the university were among the others who contributed.

“The commitment of established Drury alumni, such as Mr. Larry O’Reilly, is a special signal to all who are part of the Drury University community,” said Drury President Dr. David Manuel. “His commitment also serves as an example to many others and we are pleased that Drury donors responded to the challenge.”