Donor Stories


Carla Van Hoven Riley with her familyEducation as Equalizer
Carla Van Hoven Riley ’96 says UC Santa Barbara was key to attaining the life she dreamed of as the daughter of Filipino immigrants. Now she and her husband, Christopher, are creating a bright future for STEM and economics students, as well as Promise Scholars, through their estate plans. Read More

Miriam BirchAward-Winning Alumnae Leaves Legacy Reflective of Her Incredible Career
From performing on stage at Santa Barbara's Lobero Theatre to dominating the producer's chair of National Geographic Society television specials, alumnae Miriam Birch has enjoyed an amazing career. She has chosen to support UCSB students studying theater while leaving a legacy that reflects her personal interests. Read More

Jenni SorkinSports as a Safe Haven
Professor Jenni Sorkin and her wife, Cheri, help student-athletes find their place on campus with a gift from their estate. Read More

Christopher Field and Jodi AndersonThe Life-Changing Magic of Study Abroad
Inspired by the scholarship that allowed her to study in the U.K., Dr. Jodi Anderson ’94 and her husband, Christopher Field, are helping future generations of Gauchos have the same experience so they become more globally minded citizens. Read More

Tom MassaGenerosity as Compass
When Thomas Massa graduated from UC Santa Barbara in 1968, he was one of only eight geography students. Now he’s made a gift to support future students who are curious about the world. Read More

Norm and Jane HabermannThe Power of Scholarships
Norm Habermann and his wife, Jane, have supported scholarships at UC Santa Barbara for more than 22 years. Their financial giving provides support—and security—to deserving students to attend UCSB. Read More

Trudi KerkmeyerTaking Root at UC Santa Barbara
After losing her parents, Trudi Kerkmeyer arrived at UC Santa Barbara with little support. She had a grandpa to go back to but knows that other students aren’t so fortunate. Her legacy gift ensures that future students will succeed despite any hardships. Read More

Mathilda Christensen KuehlA Dream of Philanthropy
A lifelong educator who worked her way through college, alumna Mathilda “Mitzi” Christensen Kuehl always dreamed of providing a scholarship. Today, thanks to an estate gift from Mitzi and her husband, Bill, the Kuehl Scholarship benefits a new class of Gauchos each year. Read More

Gil SanchezPreservation of a Legacy
Thanks to a generous gift from donor Gil Sanchez, a remarkable collection of his life’s work as a renowned architect is now housed in the Special Collections of the UCSB Library. Read More

Alan GrosenheiderA Library Legacy
Alan Grosenheider knows the difference a gift can make for a student. By including UCSB in his future plans, he’s not only changing lives, but supporting his passions as well. Read More

Steve and Barbara MendellAn International Perspective
"Those that can help create opportunities for others should do so," says Steve Mendell '63. The power of education inspired Steve and his wife, Barbara, to create the Mendell Award in Political Science, an annual scholarship that will be endowed through a bequest. Read More

Jenny and John LofthusA Place of Joy: What USCB Means to One Family
Jenny and John Lofthus are intricately connected to USCB. Learn what ties them together, and why they chose to leave a gift to the University in their estate plan. Read More

Rafael CostasGifts to UCSB Benefit Future Gauchos
Rafael Costas wanted to find a way to give back to UCSB. He's providing support for the University with gifts in his estate plan. Read More

Dawn WrightAlum Leaves Future Gift to Inspire Students at UCSB
Dawn Wright (Ph.D.’94) is currently the Chief Scientist of the Environmental Systems Research Institute. Her work involves the geological mapping of the ocean floor, advising organizations on oceanography and fisheries, and interfacing with government, industry and the public to understand and find environmental solutions. Read More

Tim FisherAn Investment for the Future
One of UCSB's great arts experiences is our Arts & Lectures (A&L) program. When Tim Fisher and his wife, Audrey, moved to Santa Barbara, they attended a few programs and were hooked. Read More

Charitable Gift Annuity

Muriel and John CarltonLove for Environment Inspires New Legacy
Muriel Carlton knows her late husband, John, would be honored to play a part in the North Campus Open Space Project at UC Santa Barbara thanks to his lifelong commitment to environmental causes. Read More

Erika DavisUsing Your Home to Fulfill Philanthropic Goals...And Finance Your Retirement
Historically, real estate has proven to be a solid investment. It can also be a powerful philanthropic tool when planning your estate and financial goals. Read More

Charitable Remainder Trust

Judy StapelmannAlumna Fulfills Financial Goals Through Philanthropic Planning
Judy Stapelmann earned her bachelor's and master's degrees in biology at UC Santa Barbara. She went on to teach biology and ecology at Ventura College, Glendale College and Santa Barbara City College. Read More

Gift Through Your IRA

Donn BernsteinSupporting Student Athletes
As UC Santa Barbara's first full-time sports information director, Donn Bernstein created a legacy, which lives on with a gift in his estate plan to support student athletes. Read More

Laura and Jim PutnamFrom Disaster to Action
Alumni Laura and Jim Putnam are committed to helping the environment. Using their IRAs, the couple is making an impact at UC Santa Barbara’s North Campus Open Space today and extending their support of UCSB beyond their lifetimes. Read More

Lorraine McDonnell and Stephen WeatherfordInvesting in Changing Lives
UC Santa Barbara Political Science professors (and spouses) Lorraine McDonnell and Stephen Weatherford believe passionately in “experiential education.” Read More

Retained Life Estate

Leonard and Gretchan Broom Far Exceeding Expectations Indeed
Leonard and Gretchan Broom established a significant legacy at UCSB. The couple's support will be evident on campus for years to come. Read More

Legacy Gift

Sears McGeeProfessor Emeritus Honors Late Mother, Leaves Legacy
A UC Santa Barbara professor emeritus establishes means to support graduate students of the future through smart estate planning. Read More

Steve and Amparo DavisA Tennis Legacy
Steve Davis ’93 followed his love for tennis to UC Santa Barbara as a student-athlete. That same passion for the sport inspired Steve and his wife, Amparo ’94, to engage with UCSB Athletics on many levels as alumni. Read More

Paul WackPlanning for the Future
In his 34 years of teaching, Paul Wack inspired generations of leaders in environmental studies. When Paul retired, he funded a scholarship to continue his impact. See how he is using his estate plan to add to the fund and motivate future planners. Read More

Margaret Becker MorezAn Audacious Adventurer
Margaret Becker Morez lives a colorful life of art, family and helping others. Now retired from the UCSB Library, her legacy gift supports UCSB's Early Childhood Care and Education Services. Read More

Phil SpectorA Wider World
Having benefited from scholarships and a transformative study abroad experience during his time as an undergraduate at UC Santa Barbara, Trustee Phil Spector is giving back through an unrestricted legacy gift. Read More