When Edward Foggs was considering which college to attend as a teenager, he wasn’t sold on Anderson College.
An astute, ambitious young man, he had letters of recommendation headed to Yale University, certain that he’d pursue higher education in the Ivy League.
Former Sherman Street Church of God Pastor John Clark changed his mind.
Ever since, Foggs and his wife, Joyce, have been tied to the university.
On Sunday, The Anderson University Heritage Club honored the couple as its 2011 Heritage Award honorees.
The AU Heritage Club is a group of alumni who give back to their alma mater by listing the university as a beneficiary in life insurance policies, leaving portions of their estate to the university in wills and allowing the college to inherit the individual’s assets.
The Heritage Award was established in 1994 to honor Heritage Club members who have helped advance the university.
Last year, Norman and Louetta Beard were honored. Dorothy Morrison Thomas was the award’s first recipient in 1994.
Foggs said he and his wife were “pleasantly surprised” to learn that they had won the award.
Foggs, who served as pastor of the Sherman Street Church of God, previously worked as an adjunct professor at Anderson University and served as the chief executive officer and general secretary for the Leadership Council of the Church of God.
His wife, Joyce Foggs, was an elementary school teacher and administrator in the Anderson Community School Corporation for nearly 35 years. She eventually lent her talents to young teaching students at AU.
AU President James Edwards commended the couple’s investment in the college. “Even in retirement,” he said, “this couple continues to find ways to serve God and the church.”
“He has represented us all so well in the broader family of God’s church,” Edwards said of Foggs’ career as a pastor.
During Sunday’s award ceremony, AU’s vice president for advancement, Robert Coffman, announced that Heritage Club gifts and other fundraisers have helped the university raise $103 million since 2006.
The ultimate goal, he told the crowd, is to raise $$110 million.
The dedication of the members of the Heritage Club has made the goal reachable, he explained. “This kind of commitment is so important,” he said. “We are so grateful and so thankful.”
AU School of Theology alumna Kirsten Streit-Harting thanked Heritage members for their devotion to the university, noting that donations help keep tuition costs low for seminary students.
Streit-Harting said going to seminary school helped her develop a new love for the Old Testament.
“Our professors became more than just teachers,” she said. “They became mentors.”
As the Foggs received their Heritage Award Sunday, Edward Foggs accepted the honor with humility. “I pray that we shall be able to measure up to the tall crown you have placed on our heads,” he said.
—Brandi Watters is a reporter for The Herald Bulletin. Story republished with permission.
Anderson University is a private Christian university of 2,600 undergraduate and graduate students in central Indiana. Anderson continues to be recognized as a top Christian college: in 2010, U.S. News and World Report ranked Anderson University among the best colleges and universities in the Midwest for the seventh consecutive year. Established in 1917 by the Church of God, Anderson University offers more than 65 undergraduate majors and graduate programs in business, education, music, nursing and theology.