UNCW receives $2.5 million gift

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UNCW UNC-Wilmington has received one of the largest endowments in campus history.

During a board of trustees meeting today, Chancellor Gary Miller announced that the family of the late Bill and Barbara Dobo has given $2.5 million to the university.

“We are deeply grateful to the Dobo family for this substantial contribution to support the areas of greatest need on our campus,” Eddie Stuart, vice chancellor for university advancement, said.

Gabriel William “Bill” Dobo, who died in June 2013, graduated from UNCW in 1951. He and his late wife Barbara “Barby” Beckwith Dobo were active leaders in the Wilmington community for many years.

They shared a love of music and theatre, and Beckwith Recital Hall in the Cultural Arts Building is named in her honor.

Bill–a successful business owner and inventor who developed one of an innovative gem-cutting machine–was also deeply interested in science and engineering. Dobo Hall, a science building on campus, is named for him and his wife, as well as his late brother and fellow Seahawk Robert “Bob” Ridgely Dobo Sr., who died in 2009, and his late wife Dorothy “Dot” Gray Dobo.

The brothers, both dedicated ambassadors for UNCW, jointly received the 2005 Alumni of the Year Award from the UNCW Alumni Association.

The family’s latest gift–made through a charitable remainder trust–will be added to the previously established Dobo Endowment, created with an initial $2.5 million contribution from Bob and Dot.

Now valued at more than $5 million, the Dobo Endowment for UNCW will generate approximately $250,000 a year for the university’s greatest needs, in perpetuity.

“Bill exemplified a commitment to learning and innovation. He and Barby were great friends that I’ve had the good fortune to know. Their generosity has been an inspiration to me over the years due to their deep belief in the pursuit of knowledge and their enthusiasm for UNCW,” Stuart said. “Their legacy will live and breathe forever through the success of our students and faculty who will benefit from their generosity.”