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50th Class Gift
For the Class of 1973 50th Class Reunion Gift Project Donation Letter,
through the U.S. Naval Academy Foundation, click here.


From: Chairman, Class of ’73 50th Reunion Gift Committee
Re: Class of ’73’s 50th Reunion Gift to the Academy

Classmates,

Greetings! We trust that you are experiencing fair winds and following seas ... a time to reflect and to focus.

We came to the Academy at a time of great unpopularity of the US Military. We were all going to Nam anyway. Not popular, but the right thing to do.

Where has each of us traveled these past nearly 50 years?
We each took different journeys upon graduation, but, two events tie us together. Swearing in for 1,300+ of us on June 30, 1969, and, for 900+, being commissioned on June 6, 1973, bond us each to the other with celebrations of opportunities that lay ahead, and challenges achieved, as nothing else could have. We took different classes, played different sports, had different roommates, stood different watches, different majors, different duty stations, different causes, but on these two dates, we were one. And, our Class Crest unifies us. Look at the “Non Sibi” on your ring, on our Class Crest. For others, not just ourselves.

In our collective careers, our Class has produced:

  • 4 four-stars (including CNO, Pacific Fleet, Atlantic Fleet, SoCom)
  • 7 three-stars
  • 9 two-stars
  • 6 one-stars
  • Lawyers, Doctors, Coaches, Educators, Ministers, Fathers, Husbands, Doers, Servant Leaders
Since graduation, our class has contributed over $3.1 million to the Academy for a number of initiatives including the Distinguished Chair in Leadership, improvements to Navy Marine Corps Memorial Stadium, a granite bench on Stribling Walk honoring “Command”, refurbishment of the Macedonian Monument, support of the Center for Academic Excellence, multiple projects for sport teams, Extra Curricular Activities and, through unrestricted giving to the Annual Fund, whatever else was needed for the Midshipmen and the Academy, respectful of the past, looking to the future, executing now, when needed.

Thanks to each of you who have given so generously.

And, because we want to continue to give back to the Academy, we have one last major opportunity. As you probably know, the Naval Academy Foundation asks Classes to help with projects through fundraising every five years through a Class’ 40th Reunion, and with one last project at the 50th, that is, if the Class wants to do so.

Our class officers chartered a committee to ascertain the worthiness of such an undertaking, to study this opportunity and to recommend a plan for our 50th Reunion gift.

This committee has recommended to our class officers that we produce a class gift at our 50th Reunion. With guidance from and concurrence by our class officers, the committee has defined and negotiated our 50th Reunion fundraising plan through a Memorandum of Understanding between ’73 and the Foundation. I would like to take this opportunity to share with you what that plan is. Our goals are as follows:
  • Benefit the Midshipmen directly by raising $3 million by 2023
  • Be of value to the Mids and the Academy for decades to come
  • Be a beacon for all to say, “1973 was special. Look what they did together for others by raising $3 million from many, many, Classmates.”
  • Set a record for the highest percentage of the class participating in the 50th Reunion fundraiser.
The Superintendent asks the Foundation to raise money for the Academy in four key areas (sometimes referred to as “Pillars” in Academy/Foundation jargon) - Academics, Leadership/Ethics, Athletic Excellence and the Naval Academy Annual Fund. Our 50th Reunion Gift will support each of these areas. The Committee will work with the Foundation and the Superintendent in 2018 to further refine specific major projects, focused on Academics and Leadership/Ethics. You will be asked over the next several years for input, to vote on, to determine the specific major gift(s). But, you will be able to contribute to any of the Pillar(s) you so desire.

The question the committee has spent the most time considering is, “How can ’73 most directly help the Midshipman?” It is our opinion that a gift needs to be:

  • Supported by the Class
  • Supported by the Superintendent
  • Supported by the Foundation
  • Large enough to make a difference
  • Able to directly affect the most Mids, while honoring ’73 and being emblematic of our Class’ life of non sibi.
Why was $3 million selected as a goal? Because it is large enough to make a difference to the Mids. Most classes have a Classmate who will write a million dollar check to kick start such a campaign; to date we do not appear to have such. So how can we raise $3 million? Let me explain our approach to use the concept of “Much from Many” over the next seven years.

We propose to initially offer a long term, low monthly contribution amount option to Classmates who have historically either not contributed or who have given at a level below the President’s Circle (PC) level of $2,500 per year. These Classmates will be asked for a pledge of $73 per month for 73 months. If 188 Classmates agree to this level of commitment and make good on their pledges, the Class will have essentially attained their “$1M donor.” That is the basis of “Much from Many.”

Our plan of action:

1. Classmates who normally give below the PC level will be asked by email or USPS letter in 2016 for a “$73 monthly for 73 months!” pledge. The correspondence will include a pledge form.

2. If you do not receive the email or letter asking for a “$73 monthly for 73 months” pledge, you are someone who does, or probably can, donate at the PC level or above. You will be asked to support the project in 2019, 4 years prior to our 50th Reunion.

3. Normal Class project solicitation is conducted in 2019.

a. Classmates who can make major gifts ($20,000+ annually) will be solicited by Foundation Gift Officers.

b. Classmates who can give at the PC level but not as much as $20,000 per year, will be solicited by Peer Callers (Classmates).

c. All other Classmates will be solicited by the Foundation’s phone/mail contractor. However, they will not contact members of the group who are on an active “$73 monthly for 73 months” pledge to the Class Project.

4. We can maximize total giving, our commitment to USNA and, therefore, the ‘73 legacy through our support of this bold project.

All this sound good? Sort of? Certainly most of you give to charities, kids and grandkids, schools, churches, synagogues, and about 30% of you give to the Academy. But in order to achieve the $3 million goal, we need to double the number of us who traditionally give to the Academy.

Call or email any Committee member so that we can answer your questions.

Bottom line – the money is needed to provide the best education possible for the future leaders of the Navy and Marine Corps. The “$73 monthly for 73 months” is the initial part of the Campaign.

’73, let’s set the record for the highest participation ever! Showing up every day. Doing the right thing. For others. Non sibi.

Reflect on your good deeds, Classmate.
’73 has a lot to be proud of. Enjoy the moment. On behalf of the ’73 50th Reunion Gift Committee. Non Sibi.

Beat Army!
Dirk Mosis


 
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