Representatives from UMSL and Edward Jones pose together after the firm presented UMSL with a $1 million gift. Pictured (from left) are Martin Leifeld, vice chancellor of university advancement at UMSL; Norman Eaker, a principal and chief administrative officer at Edward Jones; UMSL Chancellor Tom George; Dave Otto, a principal at Edward Jones; Keith Womer, dean of the College of Business Administration at UMSL; and Myles Kelly, a principal at Edward Jones.

In a corporate version of the goodwill movement spawned by the 2000 hit movie “Pay It Forward,” Edward Jones investment firm has made a $1 million gift to the University of Missouri–St. Louis, where 420 local associates of the firm are graduates.

Dedicated to the College of Business Administration, the gift is the second million-dollar contribution made by Edward Jones and its associates to UMSL for its Gateway for Greatness Campaign. The initial $1 million gift was made up of donations from Edward Jones partners and associates with an additional $1 million coming from the firm.

“The impact that UMSL has had on Edward Jones is tremendous,” said Norman Eaker, a principal and chief administrative officer at Edward Jones and a 1977 accounting alumnus. “Of our Edward Jones UMSL alumni, 142 are in leadership roles, 18 of which are general partners. In no small measure is their success due to the solid preparation they received at UMSL. Helping assure that the university and its business college succeed is important to us, the firm and the greater community we serve.”

UMSL’s Gateway for Greatness Campaign seeks to raise $25 million in gifts and pledges for the college – $15 million to be used for the construction of the building and $10 million to fund endowed professorships and scholarships. This gift brings the total to $12.2 million toward the total goal for the college. The Gateway for Greatness Campaign, the first comprehensive campaign in UMSL’s history, began quietly in 2005 and is scheduled to run through 2012.

“We are very proud to be an educational provider and partner with Edward Jones,” said UMSL Chancellor Tom George. “This amazing gift reinforces both the company’s and the university’s commitment to enhancing the region’s business community and providing top-notch, prepared individuals for the area’s work force.”

Edward Jones provides financial services for individual investors in the United States and, through its affiliates, in Canada and the United Kingdom. The firm’s 12,000-plus financial advisors work directly with more than 7 million clients to understand their personal goals.

UMSL’s College of Business Administration was established in 1967 and offers bachelor’s degrees in accounting, management information systems and business administration. Students may choose from five emphasis areas: finance, international business, logistics and operations management, management and organizational behavior, and marketing.

UMSL is a public metropolitan research university providing excellent learning experiences and leadership opportunities to a diverse student body through outstanding faculty, ranked programs, innovative research and community partnerships.

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Jen Hatton

Jen Hatton