by Nicholas Shafer
FM announced its biggest donation to date, with a generous endowment of over $2 million.
FM Foundation Board Chairman Del Salmon, president of FM Dr. Dustin Swanger, and foundation Executive Director Lesley Lanzi revealed that the estate of the late Donald and Violet O’Connell had generously donated the $2 million.
The strangers to FM are owners of Palatine Industries. Married in 1950, Donald was a veteran of the Korean War, serving with the US Navy. His wife Violet lead a long career at the NYS Department of Transportation.
Members of the O’Connell family were present for the announcement.
Salmon said this was the largest donation ever received by the campus.
The donations will go towards renovations to existing buildings and programs, according to Salmon.
One of the projects, The Global Village, is expected to break ground in 2016.
Renovations to the classroom buildings, now being called O’Connell Hall in honor of Donald and Violet, will become a reality.
Earned interest will result in scholarships for students in need.
Swanger discussed how this bequeath will benefit both current students and many more generations to come.
Lanzi said. “This investment will help so many students pursue their dreams, we could not be more grateful.”