One woman's donation helps to surround students and staff with an ever-changing array of lush flowers, plants and trees on campus.
Her name is Mary Evans Beasley, and she has served on the TCU Board of Trustess and has given TCU and the Brite Divinity School almost $7.4 million through the Beasley Foundation.
Beasley made a series of donations to TCU from 1987-1997 totaling $450,000. The gift established the Mary Evans Beasley Endowment for Campus Beautification.
TCU received a bequest of $100,000 to be added to the endowment after her death in 2005.
The annual allocation of the Mary Evans Beasley gift into the Physical Plant’s landscape budget has greatly aided in the beautifying of TCU, said Robert Sulak, assistant director of the landscaping and grounds department at the Physical Plant.
“Our landscape budget will vary from year to year depending on new construction,” he said. “Each year it is around $900,000.”
According to Dick Hoban, assistant treasurer at the university, the Mary Evans Beasley endowment spends off approximately $50,000 per year.
Hoban said the money TCU uses from endowments comes from the income made off the gift, not the gift itself.
“That goes right into the Physical Plant’s budget that they’re able to use, then, to plant flowers,” Hoban said.
Sulak said the endowment also helped build a greenhouse on campus, further reducing the cost of growing and maintaining plants.
With spring quickly approaching, Sulak said plant beds around campus will soon be filled with begonias, pansies, marigolds and other seasonal colors.
Former Chancellor William H. Tucker, a close friend of Theodore and Mary Beasley, said in a previous interview that Mrs. Beasley was interested in “all things beautiful,” and her passion was flowers.
"Mrs. Beasley's legacy of a combined love for TCU and flora will impact anyone who visits the campus," said Julie Whitt, assistant vice chancellor for donor relations. "The stunning landscaping provided by her generosity certainly helps foster a world-class university experience."