Alumnus issues challenge; offers to match gifts to WCU Loyalty Fund

Photo of Wesley R. Elingburg by Will and Deni McIntyre.

Photo of Wesley R. Elingburg by Will and Deni McIntyre.

Retired Greensboro businessman Wesley R. Elingburg, a 1978 graduate of Western Carolina University whose $250,000 contribution to the university in 2006 enabled the creation of a new endowed professorship in business innovation, has issued a gift challenge to fellow benefactors.

Through the newly established Elingburg Challenge, the former chief financial officer with Burlington-based Laboratory Corporation of America is offering to match new and increased gifts totaling $1,000 or more to WCU’s Loyalty Fund. The fund provides scholarships and other support for WCU students, faculty and programs.

“I truly understand the importance of the Loyalty Fund, and I want to do what I can to promote its mission of providing merit-based scholarships to help continue attracting the top students to attend my alma mater,” said Elingburg (pictured), who has been contributing to the fund for more than 17 years. “That’s why I am challenging alumni and friends of the university to increase their giving levels.”

Through the challenge, Elingburg will match gifts of $1,000 or more from donors who did not contribute last fiscal year, or the portion above the amount of last fiscal year’s contribution from donors who increase their giving to $1,000 or more.

“The need for higher levels of giving to the Loyalty Fund is increasingly vital as students struggle to pay for their education, while facing new challenges created by the current economic downturn,” said Natalie Clark, director of annual giving at WCU. “Gifts totaling $1,000 or more are not only eligible to be matched through the Elingburg Challenge, but also will qualify donors for an invitation to the Annual Scholarship Luncheon, where they can meet students who have benefited from their generosity.”

For more information on the Elingburg Challenge, call (828) 227-3090, toll-free at (800) 492-8496, or visit the Loyalty Fund Web site.