DES MOINES, Iowa — Drake was beaming Tuesday — from its far corners — to its corner office.
“Haha…it’s made me feel very good!” laughs President Marty Martin. “I’ve been smiling ever since we came to an agreement to do this.”
The news was good, but the story was better.
Nearly a half-century after two graduates left to start their lives, they returned — bearing gifts.
“This community has always been so good to us,” says Kathi Zimpleman. “And so we have an opportunity to, as we call it, pay it forward.”
Drake won’t say just how much Kathi and Larry Zimpleman gave but let’s just say it’s enough to put their name on the business school.
“This is the Mount Rushmore of Drake University,” Martin says. “When you’ve got a name on a college or school. And now we’ve got Johnny Bright, and Larry and Kathi Zimpleman.”
The money goes into Drake’s capital campaign but gives the Zimplemans some influence over its direction.
“We see that Drake can become a leader in a new narrative of business education,” Larry says, “with business as a force for good.”
Drake expects to celebrate the completion of its campaign next year, but for these proud alums, the triumph of philanthropy is already here.
“It connects you with a lot of the passions that you have,” Larry says, “and it really feels good.”