Lyle Brizendine was recently named senior director of development for major gifts at the UMSL. (Photo by August Jennewein)

One of the St. Louis region’s top institutional trust executives has decided to leave the banking world and take up the cause of public higher education.

Lyle Brizendine, most recently senior vice president and director of philanthropic management for Bank of America Merrill Lynch, has been named senior director of development for major gifts at the University of Missouri–St. Louis.

For more than 35 years, Brizendine has managed to meld his vast knowledge of fiduciary and tax law with his passion for nonprofits. Brizendine has led trust divisions of St. Louis’s top banks and launched TIAA-CREF’s institutional trust business.

“I knew before I ended my career I would have to fully dedicate myself to my passion for public higher education,” Brizendine said . “I owe my success to the opportunities afforded to me by my education. I cannot imagine where I would be without it.”

Brizendine took over his new post April 2.

”UMSL is most fortunate to add such a passionate advocate to our advancement team,” said Martin Leifeld, vice chancellor for University Advancement. “Lyle possesses a broad and deep background in estate planning and philanthropy which will well serve our alumni and friends.”

Brizendine attended the University of Missouri–Columbia where he excelled at the Trulaske College of Business, earning a BSBA in 1974. He earned a law degree from the University of Missouri–Kansas City in 1977 and from there jumped right into the banking business. Proudly calling himself a lifelong learner, he recently earned an advanced law degree in taxation from Washington University.

Brizendine practices what he preaches when he talks about investing in education. He and his wife Charlene, who met as students at Mizzou ,have established two scholarships there. He was also the first person to establish a deferred charitable gift annuity for the business school. It’s the kind of philanthropic behavior he hopes to encourage for UMSL.

“I have a lot of specialized expertise and I plan on using it to promote UMSL,” he said. “I want to see the university continue to increase its impact on the long-term strength and vitality of our region. I’m not retiring any time soon. I hope to spend the rest of my career here.”













Maureen Zegel

Maureen Zegel