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Past Henry Suzzallo Society Newsletters

Henry Suzzallo Society Newsletter Edition: 2021

Donors who include the University of Washington in their estate plans become members of the Henry Suzzallo Society. In this annual newsletter we celebrate our donors, showcase UW news and events, and spotlight the impact of extraordinary members of our society.

Scroll down to read each article, or view the entire newsletter (PDF).

Donor Spotlights

Stan Terada: A legacy remembered

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Stan Terada, Henry Suzzallo Society member from 2012-2020

In Stan Terada’s own words, he was overeducated.

Attending high school near Boeing Field during what he called the “era of space,” Stan developed an interest in engineering and a love of tinkering. In his collegiate career, he earned bachelor’s degrees in aerodynamics and astrodynamics engineering and mechanical engineering, and a master’s in mechanical engineering, all from the University of Washington. He also received an MBA from Pacific Lutheran University.

Stan’s achievements went well beyond the walls of a classroom. He was a commissioned U.S. Air Force officer, scaled the five major peaks in Washington state, traveled extensively and had a
successful career working at several Washington companies, including 20 years of service with Weyerhaeuser. Stan’s philanthropic support of the UW began in 1987, while he was still a student. Over the years, he directed his gifts to the College of Engineering’s Diversity & Access Retention Fund and the Mechanical Engineering Chair’s Fund for Excellence.

Sue Brennan, the College of Engineering’s associate director for advancement, met Stan in 2015. “We talked for a long time — maybe two hours,” Sue recalls. “In reflecting on all he was blessed with, he wanted to give back.” Stan had an especially deep appreciation for mechanical engineering. “He really felt his mechanical engineering degree moved his career forward.”

Even through health issues, Stan continued to attend the Engineering Lecture Series and pursue his plans for future gifts. “He kept his goals for impact and legacy at the UW at the top of his mind,” Sue remembers.

Stan’s estate gift benefits students studying mechanical engineering and supports the UW’s commitment to a diverse student population, one that includes individuals of varying ages, genders, races, national origins and talents, and those from underrepresented populations and economically disadvantaged backgrounds.

Sue considers herself lucky that she was able to get to know such a generous man while working to help him fulfill his philanthropic wishes. “He had quite a remarkable life,” she says.

Daniel & Clare LaFond: A commitment to advocate

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University of Washington School of Social Work

Daniel J. LaFond (MSW ’68) and his wife, Clare, are committed to supporting students at the School of Social Work.

In keeping with the couple’s commitment to advocate for society’s economically disadvantaged, underrepresented and marginalized members, the LaFonds have created two endowments. The Daniel J.
& Clare LaFond Endowed Fellowship and the Daniel J. & Clare LaFond Distinguished Endowed Undergraduate Scholarship support students who are in financial need, honorably discharged veterans, ex-felons or recovering addicts. The first fellowship was awarded in 2016.

In addition to their endowments, the LaFonds’ philanthropic efforts have extended to other planned-giving vehicles. They have set up two charitable remainder unitrusts, included the University of Washington in their estate plans and made the UW a beneficiary of Daniel’s retirement funds.

Daniel LaFond grew up in Olympia in a family of 12, and he served as a chaplain’s yeoman in the Navy Reserve after high school. After earning a master’s degree from the School of Social Work, he counseled prisoners, served as a caseworker for Child Protective Services, was appointed chair of the Social/Human Services Program at Bellevue College and led BC’s Human Development and Counseling Center until his retirement.

Melody & Dale Burson: A new career path in philanthropy

Written by Melody Burson
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Melody and Dale Burson, Henry Suzzallo Society members since 2016

I started my undergraduate academic journey at the University of Washington, until I found working at a great-paying summer job too
much of a lure to go back the following autumn. After working in the automotive parts wholesale business for 10 years, I eventually returned to the classroom at a different college, but again, a good paying job sidelined my academic goals. Eventually, I enrolled in the University of Washington’s Evening Degree Program and received my B.A .in social sciences in 2010. I think I was going for the UW record for taking the longest to achieve a bachelor’s degree.

I met my husband, Dale, in high school, where he competed as a gymnast — both he and the team won state titles. He received an athletic scholarship to the Husky men’s gymnastics team and graduated with a B.A. in economics. Husky roots run deep in my family. In addition to us, Dale’s father, sister, brother, and one of our nephews are all University of Washington graduates. My maternal grandfather and Dale’s brother, my great uncle, are also Husky alums. For nearly 40 years we were season ticket holders for the UW football games.

While pursuing my degree, I started doing volunteer work at the Crisis Clinic in Seattle and discovered the world of nonprofit organizations; I soon changed career paths to work with nonprofit entities and their fundraising efforts. I’ve been very fortunate to have worked with some outstanding organizations, and I have met many generous donors from my development department roles and while being an advisor and consultant to several other organizations that help the less fortunate in our community.

Through my work as a major gift officer for UW Medicine, I had the privilege of meeting many talented physicians, surgeons, nurses, and therapists throughout the medical services. One of my principal areas of fundraising responsibilities was for the UW Regional Burn Center at Harborview. I had the honor of working with two of the pioneers of modern burn care in raising important philanthropic dollars to further their goals to provide exceptional patient care, continue their innovative research, and train the next generation of talented and remarkable burn care providers.

When Dale and I decided to review and update our wills a couple of years ago, we realized that we needed to have a plan in place to disperse our assets once we both passed on. Having no children, and with other relatives well-cared for by other means, I suggested to my husband that we give our estate to a nonprofit entity and suggested the Burn Center. He wholeheartedly agreed. entity and suggested the Burn Center. He wholeheartedly agreed.

My career in philanthropy taught me that people, even with very modest means, can make transformational gifts with an estate or other planned gift. As the only Level I trauma and burn center for the states of Washington, Idaho, Montana, and Alaska, it is imperative that this vital service is supported. It is our desire to help the UW Regional Burn Center at Harborview continue to be at the forefront of exceptional achievements in burn and wound care. In addition to supporting UW Medicine with our estate plans and annual contributions, we are also yearly
donors to UW Rowing and the University of Washington Tacoma.

Our University’s commitment to anti-racism

Ana Mari Cauce
University of Washington president’s blog
September 10, 2020

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University of Washington President Ana Mari Cauce

In this fraught moment in which Black people, Indigenous people, and people of color (BIPOC) are bearing the brunt of the overlapping epidemics of COVID-19, economic dislocations and state-sanctioned violence, our University is called to step up our efforts to address and redress the impact of systemic and historic racism on our BIPOC students, faculty and staff. This week, Provost Mark Richards and I responded to a list of demands presented by the University of Washington Black Student Union (BSU) concerned with the role of policing in our community, as well as issues related to making the UW a more welcoming and supportive environment for Black students, faculty and staff.

In our letter, we acknowledged that we can and must do more to create the kinds of institutional changes needed to achieve more equitable outcomes in education and beyond for our BIPOC students. We must also do more to create supportive and empowering environments for our BIPOC faculty. They not only personally bear witness to violence and injustice, but also offer vital support to the students most affected, even as they perform the excellent teaching, research and service at the heart of our public mission.

I invite you to explore in detail our commitments regarding the issues of policing, funding and institutional support for Black faculty and students, and efforts to ensure that our campus environments are welcoming and inclusive. Among these commitments is a reimagining of campus safety that takes a more holistic approach and minimizes the presence of armed police on our Seattle campus. We are also securing additional funding for Black student groups and dedicating resources to supporting our schools, colleges and departments in recruiting more Black and underrepresented faculty. As part of these efforts, and in a number of ways, we are working to increase opportunities for students to be exposed to the voices, experiences and perspectives of people who have long been marginalized at best, erased at worst.

Above all, both Provost Richards and I are grateful for the work, care and attention that the BSU has brought to these important issues under difficult circumstances, and especially as they have continued the pursuit of their degrees and educational goals. Our aspiration for every student — indeed, our entire University — is that they learn to use the tools of curiosity and drive to produce impact that leads to a better world. These students have done just that. For all of us, there is a lot of hard work ahead, but we will make progress together.

To learn more or to support the University’s commitment to anti-racism, visit the Black Opportunity Fund page:

The UW’s COVID-19 response

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When Seattle became one of the first COVID-19 hot spots in the early days of the pandemic, the University of Washington rose to the challenge as a leader for the Puget Sound region and beyond. In early 2020, with infection rates on the rise, UW leadership, researchers and care providers monitored the situation closely, working with regional public health partners to assess risks not only to education, but also to the vital research and patient care UW provides.

In March, the UW was the nation’s first major university to transition classes online, prioritizing the health of students, faculty and staff. “Today it’s our turn to take on the challenge of keeping our community safe by listening to public health experts, resisting panic and doing all we can to protect the most vulnerable in our midst,” said UW President Ana Mari Cauce.

Throughout the pandemic, the University of Washington has supported students who’ve been financially impacted, by offering relief through an Emergency Aid Fund, waiving various student fees and expanding the UW Food Pantry.

While the University’s faculty pivoted to digital platforms to continue providing a leading-edge student experience, other parts of the UW focused on combating the disease. UW medical staff have been on the front lines fighting COVID-19 in hospitals, clinics and urgent-care centers. UW researchers have been leading national efforts to map the coronavirus’s spread, understand its genome, and create and implement testing. A model from the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME) at the UW has become a globally cited source to chart the disease’s spread.

The importance of the UW’s Population Health Initiative, developed pre-COVID to advance community health worldwide through an interdisciplinary and collaborative approach, has been highlighted as research makes plain that a threat to one is a threat to all. In May, President Cauce announced that the initiative “awarded 21 grants totaling approximately $820,000 for COVID-19 rapid-response research, the first of several steps the initiative is taking to support the pandemic response and recovery.”

While there is much to learn about this novel coronavirus, the University of Washington will continue to be at the forefront of research, care and world-class education. Visit the UW Medicine Emergency Response Fund page to help accelerate an end to the pandemic: