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Tom Bass donates $100,000 to Columbia College
Monday, September 18, 2006

Donation creates the Andrew J. Bass Jr. Admissions Center and establishes endowment for Missouri Hall building fund

Andrew J. Bass Jr.
[Columbia, Mo.]-Tom Bass recently donated $100,000 to Columbia College to establish the Andrew J. Bass Jr. Admissions Center in honor of Bass' late father, Andrew J. Bass Jr. The donation also creates a permanent endowment for the maintenance and upkeep of historic Missouri Hall.

Andy Bass Jr. was a long-time trustee for the college, serving 30 years from 1966 until 1996, when he became a trustee emeritus. In 1988, the college awarded him with an honorary doctor of humanities degree for his outstanding service.

Missouri Hall was built in 1920 as a home economics building combined with dormitory space. In the last few decades, it has been used to house administrative offices. Currently, it is being renovated to become a one-stop student services center. Renovations are expected to be complete in early 2007.

"Christian College and Columbia College are an important part of my family's past, and the restoration of Missouri Hall is an important part of the college's future," said Tom Bass. "My dad was dedicated to this college and to its success. I think he would be pleased to know the Admissions Center in Missouri Hall is named in his honor."

In addition to serving on the board of trustees for 30 years, Andy Bass Jr. donated his personal home to the college in 1977. Tom Bass and his sisters, Mary Wanless and Drew Stull, also established an endowed scholarship in their father's memory in 2001 in the amount of nearly $25,000.

The Bass family's close association with the college began in 1857 when Tom Bass' great-great-grandfather, John Machir, joined the board of trustees. He served on the board until 1899-an impressive 42 years. Tom Bass' great-grandmother, Martha Woodson Machir Dorsey, was an 1870 graduate of Christian College. In addition, numerous aunts and cousins graduated from Christian College.

In 1978, Bass Commons on the Columbia College campus was dedicated in honor of Tom Bass' grandmother, Mary Machir Dorsey Bass, when she held the distinction of being the oldest living graduate of the college at age 95. She died one year later. Mary Bass graduated from Christian College in 1901, and the Columbia College Alumni Club honored her in 1968 for her many years of devoted service as an alumna, club member and loyal contributor to the college's annual fund.

Columbia College serves nearly 25,000 students each year at its Day Campus, Evening Campus, Nationwide Campuses, Online Campus and Graduate Studies Program.

The college was founded in 1851 as Christian Female College and was renamed Columbia College in 1970 when it became coeducational.