Gatton College receives $1 million gift from Forcht Bank

Part of $65 million capital campaign for renovation and expansion

LEXINGTON, Ky. (June 19, 2014) – At its June meeting, the University of Kentucky’s Board of Trustees — at the recommendation of President Eli Capilouto — accepted a $1 million commitment from Forcht Bank. The pledge is part of UK’s Gatton College of Business & Economics’ $65 million capital campaign for the renovation and expansion of the Gatton College building.

From left, David W. Blackwell, dean of UK's Gatton College of Business & Economics; Debbie Reynolds, president of Forcht Group; Terry Forcht, Chairman of Forcht Bank and Forcht Group of Kentucky; Eli Capilouto, president of the University of Kentucky; and Tucker Ballinger, president of Forcht Bank.
From left, David W. Blackwell, dean of UK’s Gatton College of Business & Economics; Debbie Reynolds, president of Forcht Group; Terry Forcht, Chairman of Forcht Bank and Forcht Group of Kentucky; Eli Capilouto, president of the University of Kentucky; and Tucker Ballinger, president of Forcht Bank.

“Partners like Terry Forcht and Forcht Bank are critical to the University of Kentucky as we continue transforming our campus for faculty, staff and students,” Capilouto said. “We are grateful to the Forcht family for this generous gift, which will help build a modern business facility that will educate and prepare students to compete and succeed in a global economy.”

Forcht Bank Chairman Terry Forcht said, “We believe in the mission of the Gatton College of Business and Economics to provide a quality education for future entrepreneurs and business leaders in Kentucky. Education is the key to moving our state forward, and we want to support it in every way we can.”

The Forcht Bank gift will fund the grand staircase in the newly renovated Gatton College facility. Located at the main entrance of the expanded facility, “the staircase will be a focal point of the building,” described UK Gatton College Dean David W. Blackwell. “The grand staircase is the primary access to the atrium, which we refer to as the ‘living room’ of the building. It also provides ‘stadium seating’ where students can relax and study between classes. It is a spectacular feature of the new Gatton College facility.”

“Forcht Bank’s $1 million pledge will help us build a technologically advanced business education complex, which will benefit students for decades to come,” Blackwell said.

The expansion and renovation of the Gatton College facility will allow for enrollment growth of more than 40 percent and faculty/staff growth to support the additional students, as well as incorporating state-of-the-art technology throughout the building.

Construction of the facility is underway with completion of the project slated for spring 2016.

This project is part of UK’s $1 billion campus transformation plan initiated under President Capilouto’s leadership. The Gatton College was approved in 2013 with House Bill 7, which also included a new Academic Science Building and improvements to Commonwealth Stadium and football training facilities. The House Bill 7 projects, as well as a new student center, the continued capital construction for UK HealthCare, and the complete revitalization of UK’s residential communities are self-financed without state tax dollars.

Forcht Bank (forchtbank.com) operates 30 banking centers in 12 Kentucky counties — Fayette, Jefferson, Boone, Grant, Madison, Taylor, Pulaski, Laurel, Whitley, Knox, McCreary and Green County — and has total assets of $938 million (fdic.gov, as of March 31).

For more information about the new Gatton College facility, visit gattonunited.uky.edu.

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