Eighty-four year-old rancher Jack Anderson is a successful Calgary area businessman and entrepreneur in agriculture, construction and oil and gas. This most prestigious honour is determined by the Olds College Board of Governors and is bestowed at the Growing the Legacy Gala each March.
In 2007 Mr. Anderson donated $1 million to the College to use without restrictions — the largest individual gift in Olds College’s 99-year history. In January- 2012, he exceeded his own record by donating his life-long collection of 100 vintage cars and trucks for the celebration of the College’s 2013 Centennial year. “He’s not an Olds College alumnus, but in so many ways he might as well be”, notes Olds College President, Dr. Tom Thompson.
“It is rare in giving and philanthropy that a donation is given to use without restrictions, even more rare, for it to happen twice”, Barry Mehr, Chair, Board of Governors, states adding, “It’s very flattering that he trusts in the governing capacity and wisdom of our Board and administration. Thanks, is simply not enough to express the gratitude and extent of this gift.” Jack unquestionably has the College’s best interest in mind explaining the intent of his gift.
“I was very impressed with what was offered here [Olds College]. Money is easier to raise in Calgary. Olds is a good school and it would be of more benefit to them than it would be to somebody in Calgary.”
To be the recipient of Partner of the Year, a nominee must reflect the mission of Olds College and support the values, mandate and mission in a manner that has a positive, measurable and lasting impact on the College. When Olds College asked Mr. Anderson if he would accept the award as Partner of the Year, he humbly responded “I guess that would be fine.”
News of Jack Anderson’s $2 million vintage car and truck donation generated national, international and local headlines stretching as far as Toronto and New York City and has been mentioned on countless auto and financial websites extending as far as Germany. Next year, the Centennial year, Olds College will be hosting an auction, “100 Cars and Trucks for our 100th Year” to celebrate this highly unique concept that will certainly gain national and international attention from media and car enthusiasts alike. The extent of this donation has enabled a small, rural institution known for agriculture and rural development, to be recognized world wide.
“The monies raised through the auction will encourage learning development for students and play an active role in their future success.” President Thompson adds, “Jack Anderson exudes, with great modesty and tact, the ideal persona this award embodies. His generosity speaks more profoundly than mere words could ever express.”
Recipients of the Partner of the Year Award include the Government of Canada (2011), Heavy Equipment Industry (2010), Olds College entire Alumni body (2009); the University of Alberta (2008), the Calgary Exhibition & Stampede (2007), Chinook’s Edge School Division (2006), the Town of Olds (2005), John Deere (2004) and Henry Heuver (2003).