Two Endowments Established at McMurry University

  Gary Ellison
  Tuesday, May 16, 2017 10:05 AM
  Archives 2014 - 2015

Abilene, TX

McMurry University is the recipient of two endowments benefiting the athletic department and the school of business.

Sara GrahamSara Graham established The Paul and Sara Graham Athletics Endowment to honor both Paul and Sara’s love for sports. Although the opportunities for Sara to participate in organized sports were not available to her in high school, she never lost her love for sports.

The Paul and Sara Graham Athletics Endowment will be utilized exclusively to provide annual operating support for the University’s athletic department at the discretion of the director of athletics.

Graham received her bachelor of arts from McMurry in 1963. She has demonstrated her love for her alma mater in many ways, including support of athletic programs, the McMurry Fund, the endowment of three family scholarships and other scholarship programs, as well as leadership giving in a variety of campaign and special projects for many years. Most recently, she pledged a transformational gift as part of the University’s initiative to endow the school of business.   

In addition, Graham has devoted countless hours to the University and is regularly seen at McMurry fine arts and sporting events.  She served on the Alumni Association Board of Directors and is a current member of the Board of Trustees, having served in that capacity for the past 17 years.  She was honored as the first recipient of the John Wesley Award in 2016 for her longstanding commitment of financial support and volunteerism to her alma mater.

Sara and Paul worked together in the ranching and cattle business, the self-storage business and the oil and gas industry until his death in 2016. In addition to her commitment to the University, she has also served her community in many ways, including serving as President of the Abilene Board of Realtors and the Abilene Boys and Girls Club and as a member of the Tax Increment Finance Board and the Human Relations Board for the City of Abilene. Sara also serves on the leadership team at Wylie Christian Church as an Elder Emeritus. She is the mother of Victor Hudman ’92, M.D., a McMurry graduate, and Linda Aldrich, a teacher. She has five grandchildren, one of whom is a sophomore at McMurry.

Rev. Bill Libby, adjunct instructor of history, established the Rev. Bill Libby Student Support Endowment for the school of business. The endowment will provide internships, externships and other experiential learning opportunities for McMurry business students.

Rev. Bill LibbyWhen Libby arrived on campus in 1996, he started the cross country program at McMurry and coached the cross-country teams from 1996-2003. He has taught Old Testament and is especially interested in its relevance and application in the modern world. He has journeyed many summers with students to conduct archaeological expeditions in Jordan and to travel in the Middle East. He also co-hosts the KWKC Talk Radio program “The Professors” daily with Dr. Paul Fabrizio, professor of political science. He can be seen all over campus--at sporting events, theatre and musical performances, any place where students gather.

Over the years, Libby has provided financial support to McMurry in many ways, including the establishment of an endowed scholarship in his mother’s name, and the deeding of land for use by the science department for student research.  He has a servant’s heart and is always looking for areas where help is needed, and he wastes no time in doing all he can to address those needs.  

After graduation from Texas A&M University and Drew Theological School, Rev. Libby was ordained in the United Methodist Church and served as a chaplain in the US Army. His service included assignments in Europe, Asia, and the United States. During those years he also completed a degree in American Diplomatic History (Kansas State) and was admitted to the doctoral program in American Studies at the University of Maryland. Later he completed the US Army’s program in Organizational Behavior and the Executive Program in Human Resources Management at Columbia University. He concluded his military service by serving on the faculty of the National Defense University; he is a graduate of the National War College.

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