Meet Members of the Manitou Heights Society
Marc Olson '07
Economics Major, Ole Football Player, Financial Consultant
"St. Olaf College was a great experience and offered many opportunities that I would not have had otherwise," writes Olson. "I want to do all that I can to make sure that future Oles have these same opportunities and that St. Olaf has the resources it needs to continue to be the great place it is. I decided a that simple way I could contribute at this early stage in my life and career would be to name St. Olaf as a beneficiary on my life insurance policy. Because a huge part of my experience at Olaf was my participation on the football team, I chose to have my gift designated to the athletics endowment to allow others the same opportunities that I had as a student athlete."
Debra J. Manning '88
Psychology Major, Choir Member, Research and Innovation Specialist
"Like many Oles, my primary connection to St. Olaf has been through the wonderful friends I first made there," writes Manning. "My Ole friends are forever friends and I feel blessed to have them in my life. I also have a powerful connection through my membership in the St. Olaf Choir and have enjoyed helping to promote the choir and other touring groups on their way through Nebraska. I also enjoyed helping with my 20th class reunion and I look forward to helping again next year for our 25th. I continue to feel connected by reading the St. Olaf Magazine and online stories and learning about the incredible impact that both students and alumni are having around the globe. I am proud of their accomplishments and the ways they are changing the world.
"I am grateful for the education I received at St. Olaf College and I know that much of the cost of that experience was paid for by alumni who generously gave to fundraising campaigns and through estate gifts. I also want to 'pay it forward' and benefit students who, like me, will come to St. Olaf seeking a high-quality education and who will leave with so much more - a sense of purpose, lifelong friends, and a deep regard for a liberal arts education.
"In addition to making regular contributions to the annual fund for current students, I included a provision for the support of the St. Olaf Choir in my estate plan."
Sonya Pedersen Margerum '52 and Dale Margerum
Biology Major, Former Regent, Former Mayor of West Lafayette, IN
"As an Ole and Ole parent, I am grateful for the excellent education that helped stimulate my intellectual and spiritual development and helped shape my commitment to science, government, and community leadership," writes Margerum. My 12 years of service on the St. Olaf Board of Regents made me keenly aware of the importance of donor contributions to the excellence and the financial stability of the college. My life has been enriched by my network of St. Olaf friends, and I will be eternally grateful for the St. Olaf liberal arts education that I received.
"Initially, my husband Dale and I included St. Olaf in our retirement planning. Later we established two charitable gift annuities with St. Olaf that provide supplemental income for us now and will benefit St. Olaf in the future. We have since rolled those annuities into a larger endowment fund that supports students who want to conduct scientific research or perform government service.
"I encourage everyone to include a bequest to St. Olaf in their will, or to give a gift of real estate or insurance. These legacy gifts help assure that St. Olaf will continue to fulfill its mission and provide 'an education committed to the liberal arts, rooted in the Christian Gospel, and incorporating a global perspective.'"