Thank You, Donors

At Heidelberg, we understand that a couple little words can go a long way. That’s why it’s very important to us that we properly acknowledge the generosity and loyalty of our donors, formally and informally. Our donors sustain us in ways large and small, and for that, we are most grateful. Thank you … two simple words that come straight from our heart.

President’s Report

We love to share great news! Each fall, the university publishes The President’s Report, which highlights many of the latest endeavors undertaken by faculty, staff and students during the past fiscal year. This work distinguishes Heidelberg in education excellence and student success. The President’s Report is a companion to the Recognition of Donors list, which now appears exclusively online.

Endowment Report for Donors

A strong endowment allows Heidelberg to continue to plan thoughtfully and deliver on our promise of Student Education Excellence and Student Total Success. With a generous base of support from major donors and prudent investing guided by the Board of Trustees, Heidelberg’s endowment has doubled since 2009, surpassing $50 million for the first time. Our longer-term goal over the next 10 years is to reach $100 million. The Endowment Report to Our Donors highlights our financial accomplishments.

Recognition Societies

The Fellows Organization

Close to 100 percent of Heidelberg students receive some form of financial assistance. A significant source of this aid comes from gifts to the Fellows Organization, an honorary society for donors to The Heidelberg Fund. Gifts from Fellows and other annual giving donors typically exceed $1 million each year.

Membership is divided into two levels based on gift amount: Fellows for gifts ranging from $50 (Young Alumni) up to $1,000, and Presidential Fellows for gifts of $1,000 and above. 

Each fall, the university honors the collective contributions of Fellows members during Fellows and Families Weekend.

Builders & Benefactors: 1850 Society and The University Society

Builders & Benefactors is a comprehensive giving society created in 2015 to honor and recognize donors for exceptional records of lifetime giving to Heidelberg. It is divided into two components: The 1850 Society and The University Society. We sincerely appreciate the collective contributions of these leadership benefactors who support us in profound and transformative ways.

The 1850 Society was created in 2013. Membership includes select donors whose cumulative lifetime giving in cash funds has surpassed $1 million. A total of 17 individuals and foundations were inducted into The 1850 Society in 2013. Within The 1850 Society, donors are recognized at four levels: Founders Circle ($1 million-$2,499,999); Student Prince Circle ($2.5 million-$4,999,999); Vision Circle ($5 million-$9,999,999); and Transformation Circle ($10 million and above).

The University Society was established in 2015. Donors whose cumulative lifetime giving places them in the $100,000-$999,999 range of cash gifts are recognized within The University Society at three levels: Colleagues ($100,000-$249,999); Collaborators ($250,000-$499,999); and Creators ($500,000-$999,999).

Heidelberg Heritage Society

While unrestricted gifts support the university’s operations year to year, there is a special group of people whose generosity has created a legacy that will sustain us well into the future. These 236 donors are members of the Heidelberg Heritage Society -- individuals or couples who have designated Heidelberg as a beneficiary in their estate plans.

In the words of alumna Nancy (Zaugg) Ackley, ‘66, gifts to the Heritage Society provide a means for “looking back with gratitude for the impact that our years at Heidelberg has had on our lives, and giving forward so that generations of Heidelberg students yet to come will experience an education that goes far beyond just the intellect.” Nancy became a Heritage Society member in June 2016.

The Heritage Society was established in 1995. Annually, new members are “pinned” during a dinner that officially kicks off Alumni Weekend. Heritage Society members have made gifts in a variety of ways that include, but are not limited to, establishing a permanent endowment, a bequest, designating Heidelberg as a beneficiary of life insurance or IRA/retirement plans, or life income gifts such as charitable gift annuities, charitable remainder trusts or through other gift arrangements.

We are eternally grateful to all of the members of the Heritage Society for their thoughtfulness, wisdom, vision and generosity.


Every year in February, red, orange and black tags are placed in more than 400 locations around campus, denoting the areas made possible by donor contributions. Led by the Office of Alumni Engagement and the Student Alumni Association, hundreds of students participate in TAG Day -- short for Thank a Giver Day -- as an expression of gratitude to alumni, parents and friends for gifts that have made their ‘Berg experience unforgettable.

On TAG Day 2016, students signed more than 2,700 thank-you notes to donors. Those who are the recipients of named scholarships wrote personal notes of gratitude to their scholarship donors.

TAG Day is just one day to express what we feel every day: our appreciation for the generosity of our many Heidelberg donors. Thank you!

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