Saint Martin's University Honors businessman with Scholarship Endowment

October 24, 2006

Lacey, Washington-When retired Olympia businessman George Meyer died last year, he left his imprint on Saint Martin’s University. A University trustee for many years, Meyer will be remembered by future generations through a scholarship endowment named in his honor.

Raised in Bremerton, Meyer was a University of Washington graduate and a devoted Husky fan. However, Saint Martin’s became a one of Meyer’s passions later in life. He appreciated its role as a leading independent school that does not rely on taxpayer support. He also valued the University’s educational imprint and importance within the greater South Sound Puget community.

A co-owner of Graystone Sand and Gravel in Olympia, Meyer became a devoted Saint Martin’s advocate during the 1960s. He enjoyed a long-standing friendship with former college president, Fr. Michael Feeney, O.S.B. Meyer was instrumental in raising funds for what was then referred to as the “Capitol Pavilion” on the Lacey campus. In 1979, Meyer joined the Saint Martin’s board of trustees, serving intermittently on the board for 20 years. He was a University Board member at the time of his death.

Chair of the board development committee during most of his tenure as a trustee, Meyer’s most notable achievement for Saint Martin’s came in the late1990s when the committee raised more than $10 million to build the O’Grady Library on campus. He was very proud of the fact that this project set a new record for funds raised to for a single project within the local community.

Upon Meyer’s death last November at age 77 after a brief illness, his family and friends set a goal to raise $100,000 to create a permanent scholarship endowment memorial in Meyer’s name at Saint Martin’s. A committee, chaired by Meyer’s longtime friend William Jacobs of Olympia, began a campaign to secure the endowment funding in January, 2006. The fund drive reached its goal this September. Others on the committee include Meyer’s widow, Cheryl Meyer, Howard Coble, Mary Gentry, Rick Panowicz, Dennis Peterson, Ron Rants, Saint Martin’s president emeritus Dr. David Spangler, current Saint Martin’s president, Dr. Douglas Astolfi, and Saint Martin’s chancellor, Abbot Neal Roth, O.S.B.

The newly created George Meyer Endowment will provide junior and senior year scholarships to Saint Martin’s students who are Washington residents and majoring in business or economics.

“We are extremely pleased that we now have a permanent endowed scholarship fund in honor of our good friend and longtime trustee George Meyer,” said Saint Martin’s President Dr. Douglas Astolfi. “The fact that a scholarship bearing his name will benefit students in perpetuity is something that George would appreciate. There could not be a more appropriate legacy in his name here at the University.”

Saint Martin’s University prepares students for successful lives through its 21 majors and six graduate programs spanning the liberal arts, business, education and engineering. A Catholic, Benedictine university, Saint Martin’s welcomes 1,200 students from many ethnic and religious backgrounds to its Lacey, Washington main campus, and 600 more to three extension campuses.

For additional information:
Anne Kirske
Interim communication director