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Columbia College alumnus delivers generous gift
Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Columbia College is proud to announce the receipt of a $250,000 gift for its science initiative from Web Bixby, president of Old American Insurance Company and a 1982 Columbia College graduate. Web Bixby is the national steering committee chairman for the science initiative and continues to play an active role in volunteering his time for the betterment of the institution.

"We are truly grateful and appreciate very much Mr. Bixby's loyalty as well as the depth of his support," said Dr. Gerald Brouder, president of Columbia College. "The success of the institution's Science Initiative is dependent upon the generosity of contributors who will enable us to strengthen and deepen the sciences here at Columbia College."

The college science initiative enables the institution to deepen the sciences through state-of-the-art facilities, laboratories, technology and scientific equipment while inspiring students to embrace scientific discovery. The science building, a major focus of the initiative, currently in the leadership phase, anticipates the construction of a 45,000 square foot building that will cost in the range of $13 million to $15 million. To date, the campaign has raised more than $1 million.

"Science is so central to our lives that it's difficult to overstate its importance," Bixby said. "All the things we take for granted have some scientific connection. From the computer screen to the telephone, every apparatus we depend upon was, at one point, a product of a scientific mind creating or developing new avenues of exploration."

Bixby is the son of Walter E. Bixby Jr., a college trustee emeritus and Mary Martha Musser Bixby '51, and whose great-great-grandmother graduated from the institution in 1908, then Christian College. Bixby has a history of supporting Columbia College as a trustee, a fundraiser, and a director of a foundation to develop the arts and education, established by his maternal grandmother. He has played an active role in the college's physical development and is involved in one of the college's next major milestones - a new science building.

Columbia College, a private, nonprofit institution founded in 1851 in Columbia, Mo., educates more than 26,000 students each year and has more than 64,000 alumni worldwide. For more information, visit