Anne Fonville-Sams, ’77, loved to ride horses on the Meredith campus in the days when Meredith offered a horseback riding program. For four years she enjoyed the camaraderie with the horses and the beauty of Meredith’s grounds. Looking back it gave her an appreciation of the upkeep it takes to sustain beautiful grounds.
“The campus grounds are a window into the soul of the school,” says Fonville-Sams, who recently was on campus to sign a $100,000 Meredith College Beautification Endowment Fund she created. “To be competitive and to attract the best and brightest students nationally, the college grounds must reflect the updated mission and ongoing success of the College.”
Funds generated by the gift will support the preservation and enhancement of the campus landscape. Aaron Schettler, the Meredith grounds manager says, “It is truly wonderful to establish an endowment that will support the perpetual care and beautification of the grounds, such that the campus landscape continues to create special memories for the Meredith community.”
Fonville-Sams says the years of growth and maturity and the excellent education she received opened doors for her after graduation. She majored in business administration and economics and fondly remembers Dr. Lois Frazier and Evelyn Simmons who encouraged her to be courageous, take risks, and take advantage of opportunities.
Her first job was with Ford Motor Company in Dearborn, Michigan, at a time when women were just getting equal job offers in management.
“They were impressed with my work ethic, confidence, and communication skills that I had honed at Meredith,” says Fonville-Sams.
Fonville-Sams worked for Ford for 14 years before she and her husband, Terry, started their own marketing business in Louisville, Kentucky.
Fonville-Sams has stayed connected through the years to Meredith mainly because she is grateful for the nurturing, close, and meaningful relationships with teachers and friends, and the confidence Meredith gave her about herself and her abilities.
Fonville-Sams wants her initial gift to encourage others to consider the importance of grounds and how the campus landscape sets Meredith apart and makes a first impression.
“It is imperative to focus on the strengths of the campus, to market the uniqueness of the school and the total experience of Meredith College for future generations,” says Fonville-Sams. “The way the campus looks is critical to showcasing the strength of the institution, telling the impressive history, and stories of success that define Meredith.”
If you would like to join Anne in supporting Meredith’s grounds or any other area of campus, please contact Claire Ruocchio, director of strategic giving, at (919) 760-8589 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Kim McCall Whitley
Beyond Strong Campaign Coordinator