Palmer ‘Daring and Driven’ campaign raises more than $30 million

More than half of donors were first-time contributors to the college, officials say
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Published: Sep. 16, 2023 at 10:41 AM CDT
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DAVENPORT, Iowa (KWQC) - Alumni and friends of Palmer College of Chiropractic have donated $30.2 million to the college’s “Daring and Driven” capital, scholarship, and endowment campaign.

According to college officials, the donations surpassed the originally announced $25 million goal by more than 20%.

The campaign, the largest ever undertaken by a chiropractic college in history, ended Sept. 1, officials said.

The campaign total was announced during the college’s homecoming festivities Friday.

“When we started this fundraising campaign in support of Palmer College’s vision for a world of unlimited health and human potential, we knew we would need to rally the Palmer nation to support the college like never before,” Barbara Melbourne, vice chancellor for institutional advancement, said. “This campaign engaged alumni that span decades and generations, including hundreds of recent alumni and even current students.”

A total of 2,200 alumni and friends of the college made contributions.

“Of that total, more than 1,150 donors, when asked to participate, found joy in making a gift to the college for the first time,” she added.

This milestone in Palmer College history comes during a period of record-breaking enrollment growth on Palmer’s campuses in Davenport and Port Orange, Florida, officials said. Over the past five years, major investments in academic and recreational spaces and technology have enhanced the student experience in ways never seen at other chiropractic colleges.

In total, eight new capital projects were completed, and $12.5 million was added to grow the college’s endowment and student opportunity scholarship program, officials said.

Lead gifts to the campaign included a $5 million gift from Bechtel Trusts; a $4 million gift from a Florida couple who wish to remain anonymous; and a $3.3 million gift from William Kiernan, D.C., and his late wife, Mary. George Blackwood, D.C.; Bruce Hagen, D.C., and his wife Bethel; Paul Hetrick, D.C.; Charles Keller, D.C.; and Paul and Donna VanDuyne, D.C.s, all made gifts of $1 million or more.

“This milestone in Palmer College’s storied history will have a ripple effect on Palmer students, the college, and the profession for decades to come,” Chancellor and CEO Dennis Marchiori said. “This is also just the start. We know that there is more work to do to rally our graduates and friends together to help Palmer reach new heights as we educate the very best chiropractors in the world.”