Page 1

University of Arkansas Fort Smith

University of Arkansas - Fort Smith Foundation, Inc.


The Newsletter of the University of Arkansas - Fort Smith Foundation | November 2011 | Vol. 3 - No. 3


Thanks to an endowed professorship, international business scholar Dr. Balbir Bhasin now calls UAFS home.

“It was a big deal; it made a big difference,” says Dr. Balbir Bhasin of the Ross Pendergraft Endowed Professorship that helped bring him to the University of Arkansas – Fort Smith this fall to teach international business and, ultimately, to develop an international business program. “It not only pays a portion of my salary, but it also helps fund my research, most of which takes place internationally.” That research—on subjects like international trade and investment, cross-cultural variances, global entrepreneurship, and doing business in emerging markets—has been published in top-level scholarly journals and presented at gatherings of organizations like the Academy of International Business and the Society for Global Business and Economic Development. Bhasin, who is known for his practical, real-world teaching style, has already worked with Neal Pendergraft—son of the late Ross Pendergraft, in whose honor Bhasin’s professorship is named, and a member of the UAFS Foundation board—to bring two top Procter & Gamble executives to campus to speak to UAFS business students. And Bhasin has plans to bring in even more business leaders from around the world. “They’ll know about us,” he says, “and we’ll learn about the rest of the world.” In addition to developing new courses—International Management this fall, then

Cross Cultural Relations in the spring and next fall a new core course called Introduction to International Business—and working toward an international business major, Bhasin is also charged with simply providing the college and the university with a broader international perspective. It’s an ideal role for someone who has lived and worked in 12 countries and speaks six languages, including Chinese, Indonesian/Malay, and Urdu. Competition is keen today for truly exceptional teacher-scholars like Dr. Bhasin, and endowed chairs and professorships can make a crucial difference. Thanks to a gift made in 2005 by Donnie D. Pendergraft, Ross Pendergraft’s wife, the university’s College of Business has been able to hire not only Bhasin, but also Dr. Amelia Baldwin, another outstanding teacher-scholar who holds the Neal Pendergraft Endowed Professorship of Accounting. “The Pendergraft gift,” says Dr. Steve Williams, dean of the College of Business, “has allowed the College of Business to recruit high-caliber faculty who might not otherwise come to the University of Arkansas – Fort Smith. Endowed faculty like Dr. Bhasin in international business and Dr. Baldwin in accounting not only provide an enhancement to the standing of UAFS, they also serve as role models, mentors, and excellent teachers.”

C a m pa i g n I n t e n s i f i e s i n F i n a l M o n t h s

For fiscal year 2008, the last for which complete economic information is available, UAFS had a total economic impact on Greater Fort Smith of $169,000,000. Of that, Neal Pendergraft was recently named to chair the final phase of the Giving Opportunity campaign. “It was time to bring new energy to the campaign,” says Foundation Executive Director Dr. Marta Loyd. “We have a one-time opportunity to become a premier regional university, and we can’t do it without private support.”

$93,000,000 was direct impact, or the sum of all expenditures associated with UAFS;

$29,200,000 was indirect impact,

the additional business spending to support the initial expenditure;

and $46,800,000 was induced impact, the additional expenditures resulting from the incomes created by the direct impact. As a result of all spending related to UAFS, an additional $4,315,000 was generated in state and local tax revenue, as well as $5,198,000 in federal taxes.


5210 Grand Avenue • Fort Smith, AR 72903

In its final stretch, the UAFS Foundation’s $50 million Giving Opportunity campaign has taken on a new energy, thanks to an idea by original campaign co-chairs Bill Hanna, Bob Miller, Neal Pendergraft, Robert Young, and the late Sam M. Sicard. Early in the summer of 2011, about the time the campaign total hit $40 million, the co-chairs realized that their momentum was beginning to wane. So they made two key decisions. First, to mirror the sense of urgency felt by the University to secure funding so that administrators can plan and grow the institution, they publicly set an ambitious goal of finishing the campaign by December 31, 2011. Second, to direct the intense effort that would be required to meet that goal, they created a new leadership structure, composed of a single chair, Pendergraft, and six co-captains, Doug Babb, Jimmy Bell, Gina Clark, Lawson Hembree, Bill Hanna, and Chris Whitt. Each co-captain leads a team of three to five members— some Foundation Board members and some not, but all chosen for his or her energy, talent, and dedication.

B y t h e N u m b e r s : UAFS ’ s Eco n o m i c I m pa c t

UAFS is also the largest employer in the Fort Smith region with nearly



From the Executive Director A Synergistic Relationship What makes the University of Arkansas – Fort Smith unique? Is it the beautiful campus, the small class sizes, the outstanding faculty, the nice on-campus housing? Those things are part of the answer, and we take great pride in all of them. But from where I sit, I have noticed a still greater asset—the synergistic relationship between the university, the community, the alumni, the faculty, and the students. Everyone benefits from the relationship. • Students benefit through volunteer opportunities and internships that help them develop real-world leadership skills. Did you know that our community makes almost 500 internships available to UAFS students? While that is an excellent number, our goal is to provide an internship opportunity for every single student. UAFS is unique. • The community benefits from the eager and talented students who bring fresh ideas and energy to area businesses and nonprofit groups. The community also benefits from the expertise of the UAFS faculty who have earned prestigious degrees and a wealth of experiences from all over the world. Faculty are guest lecturers, community volunteers, and area experts on specified topics, but most importantly, they inspire their students to learn and to think independently. UAFS is unique. • Alumni are engaged as advisory board volunteers, guest lecturers, adjunct faculty, employers, and donors. They also provide internships for students, which can be a win-win for their businesses and for the students. Alumni benefit from the ongoing relationship by staying connected to classmates and faculty, receiving the latest business forecasts and industry-specific research, and by being able to give back in a way that provides opportunity for the next generation. UAFS is unique. • Faculty hope their students graduate from UAFS with new knowledge and the ability to think and question that will enable them to become lifelong learners and live productive, fulfilled lives. Faculty acknowledge the added value for UAFS students to have work and volunteer opportunities outside the classroom and the opportunity to stay connected through the alumni association. UAFS is unique. Recently, a UAFS (Westark) alumnus called fellow alumni in another state to invite them to a regional reunion. Some folks seemed surprised to hear from our university after all these years since the UAFS Alumni Association is only three years old. One person even responded, “Do you know who I am? I’ve come a long way since my Westark days.” His reaction upset me initially. But then I realized the appropriate reply was, “Yes! We know who you are! And that is exactly why we need you to be connected and involved. You have an opportunity to inspire students who sit where you once sat—at an institution and with faculty who helped make you who you are. You are part of the reason why UAFS is unique!” Best regards,

Marta M. Loyd, Ed.D. Executive Director, UAFS Foundation Vice Chancellor for University Advancement

A B B G R O U P A N D U A F S C O O P E R AT E ON NEW ROBOTICS COURSE “Our intention is to maintain and grow the relationship that Baldor has with the University of Arkansas – Fort Smith,” says David Oberle of the ABB Group, the multi-national automation and power technologies company that acquired Baldor Electric Company in early 2011. “We realize the importance of the community and the University to Baldor’s success.” That relationship has been a long and fruitful one. Baldor has invested in UAFS through in-kind gifts of equipment, consulting on technical and academic programs, and outright gifts—most recently a $1 million gift made in 2011 by Baldor-ABB in honor of former Baldor president and CEO John McFarland. In recognition of the company’s generosity, Westark College, UAFS’s predecessor, dedicated the Baldor Technology Center on campus in October 2000. Baldor has also enjoyed a steady stream of work-ready graduates from the University. “The talent here is amazing,” says Oberle of Baldor, “and many of the people were educated at UAFS or Westark.” The next step in the relationship is the development of a robotics course at UAFS, for which ABB has offered to provide equipment, likely including a welding robot; a pick, place, pack, and ship robot; and a machine interface robot. The company has already loaned the University one robot for demonstration purposes and trained John Martini, head of the electronics department at UAFS, to program it. “We know that there’s a need here for robotics training,” says Dr. Georgia Hale, dean of the College of Applied Sciences and Technology, “because there are numerous industries in the area that use robots but that have difficulty finding employees trained to install and program them.” The first course offering is tentatively slated for fall 2012, which will allow time for Martini, who will teach it, and ABB to work together on its development. Ultimately, Martini hopes that single course will develop into a certification program and UAFS might become a center for training technicians to install and program robots like those built by ABB.

The ABB Group has loaned UAFS one of the robots it manufactures and agreed to provide more for a robotics course tentatively slated for fall 2012. In late October, the company’s Board of Directors visited campus to see the robot in action.

S econd A l u m ni W ee k end S ees F or m ation of A d v isory C ounci l s

The chrysanthemums in Lion Pride Square bloomed right on cue for the Alumni Association’s 2nd Annual Alumni Weekend, which brought some 75 alumni—a nearly 50% increase over last year—to campus in mid-October. It’s hard to say what the highlight of the weekend was, but the buffet-style barbecue dinner at the foot of the Reynolds Bell Tower on a splendid, warm Friday evening was certainly a contender. Among the accomplishments for the weekend were the inaugural meetings of the new Alumni Advisory Council and Young Alumni Council, both created to help foster a closer relationship between UAFS alumni and the institution. The two councils, along with the Student Alumni Association, form what Alumni Association Director Elizabeth Underwood calls a “leadership pipeline.” In fact, many among the current leadership of the Foundation are already alumni of UAFS, Westark, or Fort Smith Junior College, including directors Cliff Beckham, Jimmy Bell, John McFarland, Craig Rivaldo, and Randy Wewers (who also serves on the Alumni Advisory Council). One key aim of the new councils is to draw even more of the institution’s alumni back into positions of leadership within the Foundation.

UAFS Foundation, Inc. Board Of Directors New to the Foundation board since August 2011 are Sue Plattner-Smith and David Cravens. Plattner-Smith has worked for Merrill Lynch for 31 years as a financial advisor and has served on numerous boards, including the Single Parent Scholarship board and the Fort Smith Chorale board. She currently serves on the board of the Fort Smith Area Community Foundation. Cravens has worked for Regions Bank and its predecessors for more than 20 years and currently serves as commercial and industrial market manager for Northwest Arkansas. He has also served on several boards, most recently those of the St. Edward Mercy Foundation and the Fort Smith Museum of History. Rotating off the UAFS Foundation board as of December 31, 2011, are JoAnn Gedosh (13 years of service), Marianne Lane-Thompson (15 years), Janice Powell (21 years), Doug Smith (21 years), Bennie Westphal (9 years), and Randy Wewers (3 years).

Mr. Douglas Babb Mr. Richard Beauchamp Mr. Cliff Beckham Mr. Jimmy G. Bell Mr. Kent Blochberger Mrs. Gina Clark Mr. Carl D. Corley Mr. David Cravens Mr. Hank Farrell Mrs. JoAnn Gedosh Mrs. Peggy Ann Hadley Mr. Bill Hanna

Mr. H. Lawson Hembree Mrs. Marianne Lane-Thompson Mr. John A. McFarland Mrs. Judy McReynolds Mr. Robert E. Miller Mr. Mark Moll Mr. Neal Pendergraft Mrs. Sue Plattner-Smith Mrs. Janice Hobbs Powell Mr. Craig Rivaldo Mr. Mark Rumsey Mr. Tim Shields

Mr. Douglas O. Smith, Jr. Mr. John R. Taylor Mrs. Susan McMahon Taylor Mr. William S. Walker Mr. Bennie Westphal Mr. Randy Wewers Mr. Chris Whitt Mr. Stanhope Wilkinson Mr. Robert A. Young III

A dvances - The Newsletter of the University of Arkansas - Fort Smith Foundation | November 2011 | Vol. 3 - No. 3

IN THE MIDST OF TRAGEDY Two students from Japan’s tsunami disaster zone continue their studies at UAFS. “My experiences at this university will definitely help me move forward,” said Misato Abe, speaking to the more than 300 scholars and donors who attended the 2011 Scholarship Banquet at UAFS. “I have made good friends and learned a lot of new things from this experience. I am so grateful to the people who gave me such a wonderful opportunity.”

Thanks to two Japanese Student Disaster Relief Scholarships awarded in

summer 2011, Abe and Mana Miura, another Japanese student from the area devastated by the March 11, 2011, earthquake and tsunami, are spending this academic year studying at UAFS. The two scholars were selected based on a variety of criteria, including their English language skills and an essay about their reasons for wanting to study in the U.S. In order to apply, Japanese students had to be currently enrolled in a university within the disaster zone.

“We wanted to offer a tangible way to not only meet the immediate needs

of two individuals who have lost everything,” said Chancellor Dr. Paul B. Beran of the decision to create the two full-tuition scholarships, “but we wanted to help them in the midst of this terrible tragedy to focus on the future and building lives beyond this time.”

In addition to tuition, Abe and Miura receive a living expenses stipend

given by Mitsubishi Power Systems Americas, Inc., which is building a plant in Fort Smith, and also benefit from nearly $10,000 in private gifts made by members of the Fort Smith community to support their studies.

Both are taking full course loads, including freshman English and American

National Government, and both are excited to further improve their language skills, which they believe will make them even more valuable when they return to the disaster zone to lend their hands to the reconstruction effort.

At the banquet, Abe spoke briefly about her hometown of Minami Sanriku,

where nearly 10,000 people are believed to have lost their lives in the disaster. Her father, a city building official, and her mother, a nurse, were among the survivors, and they now live in a temporary apartment while working to salvage something of the devastated town they have called home their entire lives.

“The earthquake took many things from me,” she said. “Good friends, houses,

memories. But what I learned is also significant. I realize being alive is miraculous, important, and wonderful.”

To see the rest of Abe’s moving speech, visit UAFS’s YouTube channel at

Mana Miura (left) and Misato Abe are attending UAFS this year thanks to a pair of special scholarships for Japanese students from the area devastated by March’s earthquake and tsunami.

“WISE BECAUSE HE LISTENED” Long a leader of fundraising efforts at UAFS, Sam M. Sicard is remembered for his quiet wisdom. It speaks volumes about the respect and affection Sam M. Sicard enjoyed on the UAFS Foundation board that in the wake of his death in August, other board members spontaneously set up the Samuel M. Sicard Scholarship Endowment in his memory and began giving. As of early November, an incredible 61 gifts totaling almost $40,000 had been made to the fund.

Sicard, who headed First National Bank Corp., had served on the Foundation board for more than 20 years but had been

associated with the University for even longer, serving previously as an elected trustee of Westark. In fact, he was co-chair, with Nancy Orr, of the University’s first capital campaign in the late 1980s, which set a goal of $3 million and raised $5 million.

“What he did by spearheading that first campaign,” says Foundation Executive Director Dr. Marta Loyd, “was introduce

the concept to people that this school was worth investing in. And once he developed that culture in our community, it impacted all organizations.”

That campaign resulted in Westark ranking first in the nation in endowment dollars per student among two-year colleges

reporting to the Voluntary Support of Education survey. “It was his influence that got us there,” says Loyd. “Sam was key.” Sicard was also one of the co-chairs of the current Giving Opportunity campaign.

But supporting UAFS with his time, talent, and resources—both Sicard and First National Bank Corp. gave extremely

generously over the years—was only a means to the end of supporting his community. “Sam felt strongly about the University,” says Robert Young, chairman of Arkansas Best Corporation and another longtime UAFS Foundation board member, “but he was always interested in anything that had a positive impact on the community.”

Among the other organizations he served were the Central Business Improvement District, the Fort Smith Chamber

of Commerce, the U.S. Marshals Museum, Arkansas Children’s Hospital, the Fort Smith Boys and Girls Club, and United

Sam M. Sicard spearheaded the University’s first capital campaign in the late 1980s, raising $5 million and ushering in a new culture of giving in Greater Fort Smith.

Way of Fort Smith. “Anything he felt helped the community, he was strong for it,” says Young, “and he showed it with his personal participation, his time, and also with money.”

Ultimately, though, Sicard was known and admired as much for his humility, his grace, and his quiet wisdom as for his

generosity. “He was often the last one to speak at meetings,” says Loyd, “but when he did, he was right on. He was wise because he listened—but he didn’t just listen; he heard.”

A dvances - The Newsletter of the University of Arkansas - Fort Smith Foundation | November 2011 | Vol. 3 - No. 3

In Memory of

Gifts made June 15, 2011 through October 15, 2011

Rosemary Gammil Anderson Arlene Pollock

Ed Levy Anonymous Donor

Peggy Bonita Bedell Glidewell Distributing Company

Joe Kenneth Long, Jr. Glidewell Distributing Company

Roland S. Boreham, Jr. Anonymous Donor

Rose Looper Janice and Robert Powell

Richard Brent Burford Antoinette Beland Bill England Glidewell Distributing Company Dot Hosford Janice and Robert Powell

Fort Smith Police Officer Daniel Martinez Mary Buckner Burrito Brothers, LLC First National Bank of Fort Smith Senator Jake Files Goody’s Frozen Yogurt Becky and Stan Komander Stephanie Vanbrunt

Margaret Burrow Bev McClendon Lyle William Butler, Jr. Glidewell Distributing Company Kenneth “Kinny” Roy Cole Alaric Cole Byron Cravens Loretta and Doug Parker James R. “Jim” Davidson Phyllis Davidson Walter Davidson, Jr. Inge and Jim Davidson Flora Franklin Dortha and Gene Geren Barbara and Robert Hartness Jane and William Holder Rhea Jones Jo Ann and William Landers Lawrence, Schluterman & Schwartz Linda and Rusty Myers Jan and John Taylor Evelyn and Finley Turner Helen Frasier Judith Russell

Warren Ernest McLellan Joy and David Armbruster Dana and David Craig Fianna Hills Baptist Church Adult Woman Class II Susan Fullbright Ann and Damon Harkreader Jane and William Holder Kay and J.W. Holmes Maggie Mosby, Cathy Vandepopulies and family, Susan Mosby and family Ann Smith Bernice and Mike Stewart Jeannine and Gilbert Walker Nancy and Len Warden Carol and Joe Choi Christie Gilstrap Morgan Valarie Arnoldussen Bev McClendon Linda and Roger Parker Pam and Mike Phillips Norma Gillenwater Moseley Billie Bracken Betty Carlile Dovie Tinsley

Nicole and Carl Crocker, Kate and Jim Crocker, Anne Crocker, and Daniel Crocker Dr. William and Theresa Culp Evelyn Davies Chandler and Philip Doss First United Methodist Church, Discussion Class Sally and Elvin Frick Dr. Jack and JoAnn Gedosh Margaret and Gene Graham Jesse Hopkins Bonnie and Charles Housley Mary Ellen and Bradley Jesson Dr. Amy Jordan Dr. Paul and Eileen Kradel Helen Lanier Linda and Michael Lee Kate and Hugh Maurras Patti and Jim McAlister Linda and Kenneth Meacham Nadine and Robert Miller Loretta and Doug Parker Dr. Pat and Annette Phillips Poteau Upper Elementary School Teachers and Staff Janice Powell Dr. Taylor and Mary Prewitt Sherron and Charles Shuffield Sue Plattner-Smith, Greg Smith, and Adam Plattner Jean and Robert Thompson Teresa and William Thompson Evelyn and Finley Turner Linda Wells Jane C. Williams Frances and Ross Willis Debra and Ken Wintory Dr. Frances Ralston Dr. Brenda Yelvington and Lavon Morton Edward Joseph Schluterman Genelle and Dave Newton Dr. Torsten Seubold Bev McClendon

Tom Harmon Karen Harmon

Randolph Carney Ney Dana and David Craig Janice and Robert Powell

Lucia Leigh Hawkins J. Franklin Hawkins

Jennings Osborne Ann Childs

Emily Shoffey Arlene and Newton Pollock

Timothy Ryan Herndon Bev McClendon

Jessie James Patridge, Jr. Janice and Robert Powell

Harper S. Jackson Adele Jackson

Carol Poague Dr. Richard and Kay Aclin Tamara and Gerald Bailey, Jr. Beall Barclay & Company, PLC Carole and George Beattie III Patricia and Dee Carroll Lady Jane and Bob Cohen II Benton Cone Peggy Correll

Samuel M. Sicard Peggy and Jimmy Adair Patti and Rick Andrews Arkansas Best Corporation and Arkansas Best Freight Madaline and Allen Baker Jan and Rick Beauchamp Antoinette Beland Dr. Paul B. and Janice H. Beran Barbara Bethell Rose Bethell Laveta Boudreau

Charlotte Kirkpatrick Baldor Electric Company Paul Latture Margaret Latture

Elisa Shelby Bev McClendon

The Allen Gattis Family (Dr. Ray and Jan Gattis Burd, David and Alana Gattis Bell, John and Lou Anne Gattis Crumpler, and Justin and Gail Gattis Fisher) Deborah and Scott Clark Lady Jane and Bob Cohen II Marsha and Bob Costner Dana and David Craig Brenda and Carl Davis Wendy and Billy Dooly Ann and Mont Echols, Jr. Don Flanders Jane and Tom Foltz Dr. Jack and JoAnn Gedosh Tracey and Jeff Geren Glidewell Distributing Company Hanna Oil & Gas Company Dr. Marlin Hoge Dot Hosford Dr. Robert and Patsy Janes Gwyn and Michael Johnson Dr. Amy Jordan Mike Jordan Diane and Kenny King Dorothy and Bill Kirk Dr. Paul and Eileen Kradel Helen Lanier Nancy and Ewell Lee Ann Lewis and Nancy Martin Lovvorn Wholesale Lumber Corporation Drs. Greg and Marta Loyd Kimberly and John McFarland Cille and Pat McGowan Nelson Insurance Agency Genelle and Dave Newton Laura and Jeffrey Palmer Donnie Pendergraft Gina and Neal Pendergraft Elizabeth and Joe D. Powers PrimeVest Rosemary and Gene Rapley Kim Scherrey Shields Energy, Inc. Kenneth Siebenmorgen Albert Snider SSI Incorporated Nancy and William Stell Stephens Production Company Ginger and Rex Terry Barbara Walker Bill Steve Walker Ann and Randy Wewers Chris Whitt Jan and David Whitt Shirley and Fred Williams Kathy Williams Williams/Crawford & Associates Becky and John Womack Pam and Marshall Yantis Mary and Robert A. Young III

John Maddox Smith Smith Chevrolet, Cadillac, Mitsubishi Jorgette and John M. Smith, Jr. Jo Ann Stiles Brenda and Carl Davis Bill and Bensie Sutton Kim and William Sutton John R. Tatom Genelle and Dave Newton Faye Ferguson Thomas Linda and Rusty Myers Janice and Robert Powell Scott Van Asche Antoinette Beland Dot Hosford W. R. Walker Dr. Marlin Hoge Claris and Harold Wallace Carol and Darrell Hill Harry Wallace Dr. Paul B. and Janice H. Beran Dr. Arleene and Randall Breaux Anita and Terry Collier Deborah and Jasper Lewis Drs. Greg and Marta Loyd Bev McClendon Linda and Rusty Myers Larry Weigand Anonymous Donor Ignacio Guerra and Dr. Jill Guerra Dr. Gabriel and Tami Matney Drs. Kathy and Dan Pinzon Dr. Myron Rigsby and Dr. Carolyn Holdsworth Gene Wells Pam, Larry, David, and John Pearce Collier Wenderoth, Jr. Dr. Paul B. and Janice H. Beran Mildred Kimbrough Wert Glidewell Distributing Company Eileen and Bruce Worley Joan M. Worley Nola Yarbrough Dr. Paul B. and Janice H. Beran Bev McClendon Scott Yowell Donnie Pendergraft Sam Zicarelli Linda and Carl Giglione

In Honor of Dr. Paul B. and Janice H. Beran Lois Knox

Jacquie Core, “Our Pinky” Jesse, Matt, and Andy Core

Stacey Jones Dr. Paul B. and Janice H. Beran

John McFarland Baldor Electric Company

Ella Faith Petersen Brenda and Anthony Altman

Reece Annalynn Cain Brenda and Anthony Altman

Phyllis Davidson Inge and Jim Davidson

Abigail Ledezma Brenda and Anthony Altman

Mark Moll First Presbyterian Church

Jorgette Smith Smith Chevrolet, Cadillac, Mitsubishi John M. Smith, Jr.

University of Arkansas - Fort Smith Foundation, Inc. • 5210 Grand Avenue • Fort Smith, AR 72903 • (479) 788-7020

Advances, Winter 2011-12  

The Newsletter of the University of Arkansas - Fort Smith Foundation

Advances, Winter 2011-12  

The Newsletter of the University of Arkansas - Fort Smith Foundation