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creative thought matters, then certainly risk matters. So does vision. And appetite for adventure, with its fine- tuned balance of humility and confidence. What also matters within creative thought is perspective and pragmatism, the building blocks of clear logic, well-formed ideas, and sound decisions. All these ingredients went into Skidmore’s “Creative Thought Bold Promise” campaign, which finished with a bang in May. For its entire six-year run, the effort was an exercise in science and intuition, fact and fantasy, critical thought and pure faith, for trustees, administrators, and development officers, as well as alumni, parent, and student leaders. And somehow all eyes stayed on the prize: supporting Skidmore’s ambitious goals for strengthening its influence on the lives and learning of future generations.


If


STRATEGY MEETS SERENDIPITY Skidmore’s 10-year strategic plan, issued by President Philip Glotz - bach in 2005 after, as he says, “a broadly collaborative process” of community discussion, inspired the campaign. The strategy is no pie in the sky, but it’s not entirely inside the box either. Its call to ramp up student academic engagement, inter cultural understand- ing, and responsible citizenship is carefully explained and delin- eated, and accompanied by action agendas and timelines—but not fully funded. The strategy itself is the product of creative thought, a vision for where Skidmore could go even though it couldn’t get there with its present resources. Highly demanding but almost surely achievable, it made an ideal blueprint for the campaign whose purpose was to help actualize it. This was a campaign about numbers and dollars. But it was also—in fact, more so—about human endeavor joined in a com- munal human spirit on behalf of individual human development and achievement. Through six years, including a global economic meltdown that crunched Skidmore’s budgets and donors’ wallets, hundreds of campaigners across the College and across the coun- try kept expanding financial aid, erecting academic and commu- nity buildings, enhancing educational offerings, and enriching the transition into adulthood for more young people each year. The effort worked from calculated projections and published goals, but it also entailed some crossed fingers and quick reflexes. To meet the challenge of its big numbers on paper and its high stakes for whole genera- tions of future Skidmore students, this campaign truly seemed to em- body its “Creative Thought Bold Prom- ise” moniker.


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CAMPAIGN CO- CHAIRS SARA LEE SCHUPF ’62, SUE WILLIAMSON ’59, BILLIE TISCH ’48


bold and bountiful 2003


OCTOBER “...to fulfill our potential and our promise as a unique and compelling institution where the presence of creative thought permeates the warp and woof of our communal fabric...” —Pres. Philip Glotzbach


OCTOBER “...so many worthy students seeking help, and so many terrific proj- ects with such compelling needs...” —Polly Skogsberg Kisiel ’62, making the first commitment, of $1 million, with husband Mark


$1,000,000


NOVEMBER “I don’t think any of us anticipated that that much money could be raised.” —Jim Ricker, P’91, ’96, ’97, helping raise $4.5M for Friends of Skidmore Athletics, to save ice hockey and aid other sports


2004


MAY “You can raise $150 million, but how much do you need?” —Arthur Zankel, P’82, ’92, suggesting $200M goal


ARTHUR ZANKEL 2005


MAY “...an intellectually rigorous, transformative educational ex- perience...” —“Engaged Liberal Learning,” Skidmore’s strategic plan for 2005–15


$26,700,000 2006


MAY “My dad’s success in life was in large part due to his generosity and compassion. His example was my impetus ... to honor his values and help them live on.” —Cindy Nicklis Neumann ’70, giving the John O. Nicklis Endowed Scholarship


JUNE “Arthur Zankel was one of a very special few.” —Sue Corbet Thomas ’62, citing record $42M gift from the estate of Arthur Zankel


POLLY KISIEL


SUE THOMAS FALL 2010 SCOPE 17


CHARLIE SAMUELS


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