In late September as fall 2017 was underway, Oglethorpe University, the landmark campus on 4484 Peachtree in Brookhaven, made a blockbuster announcement of a $50 million bequest. It’s the largest gift ever for the University, founded in 1835. Alumnus Q. William “Bill” Hammack of the class of 1973 made the gift to establish a new School of Business, slated to open at Oglethorpe in fall 2019.
“As I reflect back upon my professional career,” said Hammack, recently retired as CEO of C.W. Matthews Contracting Co., “ I can directly attribute it to the leadership, communication and critical thinking skills I learned by attending a liberal arts institution.” It’s a legacy moment for both Oglethorpe and Bill Hammack. “By making this gift to Oglethorpe,” he added, “I hope to help a new generation of business leaders to find their own success.”
Bill Hammack and his wife Diane have established a foundation to administer the bequest. The first portion will go toward starting the Q. William Hammack Jr. School of Business at Oglethorpe, and a search for a Dean is in its early stages. A significant part of the gift will go toward university endowment.
“The gift will be transformative for Oglethorpe,” said Lawrence M. Schall, university president since 2005. “This is a truly exciting chapter in Oglethorpe’s proud history and we will owe a tremendous debt of gratitude to Bill Hammack for many years to come.”
As an Oglethorpe alumnus (1972), a staff member for 18 years and a member of the tightly-knit com-munity who loves the institution, I can say we are all delighted. The Westminster chimes that toll from our bell tower always inspire, but even they seem more uplifting now.
–Dr. Paul Hudson