May 27, 2003
Catawba alumnus makes $50,000 gift to Shuford StadiumGene Fuller '52 is quick to tell you that no matter how much he and his classmates “give to Catawba, the institution did more for us than we could possibly ever pay back.” He and his wife of 48 years, Jane Bost, recently made a $50,000 gift to the Shuford Stadium project as one way of saying, “Thank you,” to Fuller’s alma mater. The $4 million stadium project will conclude this summer, and regular season play is scheduled there beginning with the first home game, Sept. 6. The facility will have new bleachers and a seating capacity of approximately 4,000, nearly 1,000 more seats than the old stadium. Catawba College Senior Vice President Tom Childress called the Fullers’ gift “much appreciated.” He said Fuller saw a need and simply “tried to help fill it.” “This type of gift is very typical of Gene,” Childress said. “He loves Catawba and has, since his graduation from here, continually lent his support to her various projects.” “I’m very interested in athletics,” Fuller explained, “and I like football. I saw they needed some money on the stadium project, and I thought I could help out.” At the stadium, new concession stands are being constructed on both sides of the field, along with a larger press box, more restroom facilities, a coaches’ box where staffs can videotape and observe games, and a special area for seating guests of the college president. The stadium will be handicap accessible and include an elevator to the press box. The playing surface itself, Kirkland Field, will be redone to include drainage and irrigation. The track surrounding Kirkland Field will also be resurfaced. Project architect is Gray Stout of Salisbury, while the general contractor is Jarrell Construction. Fuller is a retired commercial real estate developer who makes his home in Charlotte. He was born and raised in Lumberton, the youngest of five children, and the first in his family to attend college. He chose Catawba because a couple of his friends were planning to go and encouraged him to join them. What he found was a close-knit college community where he “wasn’t just a number.” Fuller’s two sons, Mark and David, have followed their father's footsteps and have careers in commercial real estate sales in Charlotte. Fuller describes his family as “very close,” and is especially proud of his two grandchildren, Elizabeth, 13, and William Alexander, 15.
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