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Former OU Union Activities Director's Gift Helping to Renovate University Club

Former OU Union Activities Director's Gift Helping to Renovate University Club

May 10, 2012

The generous gift from a former director of Union Activities at Oklahoma Memorial Union is helping to fund the renovation of the University Club in the Union, University of Oklahoma David L. Boren announced at the May meeting of the OU Regents.

Jan Marie Crawford of Denver made the gift in her name and that of her late husband, Richard J. Crawford. In appreciation, the Oklahoma Memorial Union space occupied by the University Club will be named in perpetuity as the Jan Marie and Richard J. Crawford Faculty Club.

Aesthetic improvements will provide a welcoming environment and invite conversation, and space configurations will provide for meeting spaces. Renovations will be made to both the dining and kitchen areas, which will allow for an expanded menu.

Mrs. Crawford also made a gift to upgrade and maintain the Leadership Conference Room in the Student Affairs area of Oklahoma Memorial Union and to renovate and purchase music equipment for the Music Practice Wing in the Donald W. Reynolds Performing Arts Center.

“Thanks to the generosity of Jan Marie Crawford, the University Club will be a much more inviting place for faculty and graduate and professional students to gather together for meals and other events,” Boren said. “It will truly help create a stronger sense of community on campus. It will also aid us in recruiting faculty, staff and graduate students. We are deeply grateful to Mrs. Crawford for this gift.”

The Crawfords both earned graduate degrees from OU. Richard J. Crawford earned a doctorate from the university and later wrote the book, The Persuasive Edge. He was the first full-time in-house trial consultant hired in a law firm to advise lawyers on their legal presentations. He died in 2009.

Jan Marie Crawford was the director of Union Activities at the university in the 1960s. She noted that her office at that time was located very near to what is now the Leadership Conference Room, one of the areas that is benefitting from her gift. She led University Scandals and the first OU student trip to Russia, and was one of the first students to study Higher Education Administration at OU.

“The University of Oklahoma continues to maintain the highest of standards that make me so proud to have been a graduate,” said Mrs. Crawford.  “I want to do what I can to let the students, faculty, staff and administrators know how much I value and appreciate their efforts. What they are accomplishing for the campus and larger community never fails to amaze me.”