Opening Doors to Growth Deb ’74 and Paul ’74 Parker-Johnson Nurture Students’ Minds and Souls
Visits to campus, particularly to Chapel House, have helped Deb ’74 and Paul ’74
Parker-Johnson reflect on their time at Colgate. Below, the couple reminisce — and discuss their bequest plan in support of financial aid and Chapel House. Their plan counts toward their 50th reunion class gift, and they reserve control of their assets for life.
What are your favorite college memories?
Paul: Snow, snow, and more snow on the Hill and even on the soccer field. Discussing challenging topics in classes, especially in Professor Hartshorne’s class. Heartfelt camaraderie and having a strong sense of belonging to a community of achievement.
Deb: In August [of my first year], I thought I had all the friends I ever needed and was only going to Colgate to learn; by December, I was celebrating my birthday with my new friends. To this day, they are many of my best friends.
How did Colgate shape your life?
Deb: My deep belief in the power of education was nurtured at Colgate through thought-provoking courses, great friendships, eye-opening travel, leadership opportunities, and athletics. Plus, being in the first class of women gave me the chutzpah to walk into rooms of all-male colleagues without being intimidated.
Paul: Colgate taught me to always bring my best self and a resilient attitude to any task — that important goals don’t just happen. They are achieved by people applying themselves effectively.
Why did you give to Colgate?
Deb: Colgate gave me an amazing springboard for the rest of my life, and I would like others to have that experience. We also want to make a gift to an area of campus that nurtures students’ personal growth at the philosophical and spiritual levels.
Paul: Yes, and we believe the school is pursuing a well-considered and inspiring plan for its third century, and we want to support that.
The discussion herein is general in nature and may not apply to all individuals. Prospective donors are urged to consult their personal tax and financial advisors concerning the specific consequences of making gifts to Colgate. We would be pleased to discuss, in confidence, ways in which you may support Colgate. These measures may also have an impact on your estate planning.