Holders Endow Vernon Grant Scholarship

STILLWATER, Okla. — Robbie and Mike Holder are committed to the vision of OSU Athletics. To prove it, they are donating $500,000 for the first endowed scholarship representing Oklahoma State football.

"Robbie and I are donating the first full scholarship for football in the name of Vernon Grant," said Mike Holder, OSU's Vice President for Athletic Programs and Director of Intercollegiate Athletics. "Vernon was a special student and athlete. He had contagious energy. We both feel he modeled great leadership and character on and off the field."

Oklahoma State safety Vernon Grant, a native of Duncanville, Texas, died in May of 2005 in a car accident in Dallas. The 22-year-old was a three-year starter, had 67 tackles, two interceptions, two sacks, two forced fumbles and two fumble recoveries in his last season in a Cowboy uniform. He led Oklahoma State with nine tackles in the Alamo Bowl.

"Vernon's tragedy was a terrible loss for everyone associated with Oklahoma State University and the football family," said Robbie Holder. "Vernon was a terrific young man with an incredibly positive attitude. It is an honor to be able to name a scholarship in his memory."

As part of an initiative to fully endow all OSU varsity sports scholarships by 2016, Mike and Robbie Holder challenge other supporters to consider making a difference through this important campaign.

"OSU Athletic Endowment ranks last in the Big 12 with just over $2 million endowed," offers Craig Clemons, Associate Vice President for Athletic Development. "The goal is to endow our 229 athletic scholarships and save the operating budget nearly $6 million in annual expense. Each scholarship costs approximately $20,000 annually for tuition, room, board and fees."

It takes $500,000 to endow each full scholarship using a spending policy of four percent. Excess earnings will be reinvested, allowing the principle to grow at a rate covering future increases in scholarship costs. Donors have to 10 years to fund endowments, depending on giving level.

"We are particularly privileged to have Boone Pickens manage scholarship donations, which will be invested with BP Capital," added Mike Holder. "Boone has agreed to forego all management fees for donations made to the scholarship endowment fund."

BP Capital has been very successful since its inception in 1997. With his historic $165 million gift to athletics in December of 2005, Pickens has provided an opportunity to build state-of-the-art facilities for each OSU sports program.

"His generosity in managing our scholarship endowment gives us another opportunity to provide each sport the resources to field a nationally competitive team," adds Holder.

To provide more people an opportunity to participate in this historic fundraising campaign, three donor categories have been designated at the $500,000, $250,000 and $125,000 levels. Prominent and significant recognition is planned for display near new athletic facilities in Stillwater.

To learn more about making a contribution or for more information, contact Craig Clemons, Larry Reece or Shane Crawford at 1-877-ALL4OSU.

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