WEST LIBERTY, W.Va., Dec. 30, 2018 — West Liberty University alumni made the New Year more prosperous when former members of the wrestling team displayed true teamwork in initiating a $1 million legacy gift to strengthen the future of grapplers on the Hilltop.
“West Liberty’s reputation in the world of college wrestling is well known and I thank these alumni for stepping forward with a plan for the future that guarantees the tradition,” said President Stephen Greiner.
Former wrestlers Richard Foston, Chris Gibbs, A.J. Monseau, Scott Shipman, Samuel Stewart, Chris Taylor and Wes Watson have all purchased life insurance policies that designate WLU as the beneficiary.
“Our alumni are leading the way by taking the step and will inspire others to join the cause and become active in planned giving. I am grateful for their leadership and commitment to West Liberty University’s future,” said WLU Foundation Executive Director Angie Zambito-Hill.
“The life insurance project was kicked off two years ago through the efforts of our wrestling board and seen as a long term goal for the program. The commitment from these alumni is amazing and speaks highly of our program. We won’t stop at the $550,000 already secured by these alumni, the objective is to reach $1 million by the end of 2019,” said Mitch Smith, head wrestling coach.
“It’s amazing generosity. This million-dollar gift will endow a fund for the future of WLU Wrestling,” said Zambito-Hill, noting that 90 percent of the Foundation’s $16 million endowment is the result of planned giving or gifts that are deferred till a later date.
Alumni and others who make provisions for the WLU Foundation in their wills or devise other estate-planning arrangements are recognized by a formal listing in the Nathan Shotwell Society, named after the school’s founding president. Currently there are 151 members in this prestigious group.
Pursuing excellence since its inception in 1962, the West Liberty University wrestling program has produced 93 NAIA and NCAA Division II All-Americans and eight individual national champions. That success has been matched in the classroom where the Hilltoppers have received an even more impressive 102 NWCA National All-Academic citations. For complete details on Hilltoppers Athletics, please visit hilltoppersports.com.
For more information on giving to WLU, please visit WLUFoundation.org.