Community Joins for A Celebration of Generosity 

UMKC Foundation annual dinner celebrates donors' stories


October 9, 2017

At the UMKC Foundation we recognize that Every Donor Tells a Story. Each and every interaction we have with donors reminds us that gifts are not about money, but are based on a very personal connection that a donor has with the university, our mission, Kansas City or a particular passion. Internally, we share and celebrate these stories every day – picking up phones, leaning in doorways, talking over cubicle walls. But once a year our board and staff come together to recognize and celebrate the relationships that further these passions.

At our annual Celebration of Generosity dinner, held this year at Arrowhead Stadium, we shared our stories of success. During the “Novel Ideas” reception, many of our academic units demonstrated the results of donor contributions that further our mission through interactive booths. Guests shot baskets with UMKC Athletics, were able to expore the power of drones with the School of Computing and Engineering and learned the joy and complexity of playing the violin with the Conservatory of Music and Dance.

We were thrilled to honor the Sunderland Foundation with our Award of Distinction for its tireless leadership, time and financial support of the UMKC Foundation.

And while we will miss the steady, graceful leadership of our former Chancellor Leo Morton, we celebrated all that he brought to the university. In his last official act as Chancellor, Morton bestowed the Chancellor’s Medal on community leader and Foundation board member Alan Atterbury for his long and active service as a donor and UMKC Trustee and his key role in establishing the Foundation. The Chancellor’s Medal is the highest non-academic award that the university presents to a volunteer.

It is our job to always be looking to the future and supporting the growth and development of the university. We are excited as we watch the sure transition of Interim Chancellor and Provost Barbara Bichelmeyer and are optimistic about what our next chapter will bring.

Compared with the long history of UMKC and its integral connection to Kansas City, we are a young foundation. We are incredibly proud that this fiscal year, one in which we were not in the midst of a campaign, we saw a 10 percent increase in both the number of donors and gifts. This tells us the community recognizes that we are a strong and reliable partner. That is the sort of story we want to tell.