Baylor University Libraries Surpasses Campaign Milestone

August 23, 2021
One Billion and Counting

Gifts to Academic Programs, Resources Surpass Initial $10 Million Goal in Give Light Campaign

Media Contact: Lori Fogleman, Baylor University, Office of Media and Public Relations, 254-709-5959
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WACO, Texas (August 23, 2021) – Baylor University Libraries announced today it has surpassed $10 million in gifts and pledges of support, exceeding its initial fundraising goal set at the beginning of the Give Light Campaign. Nearly 900 alumni, parents, staff, faculty and others have given to Baylor Libraries as part of Give Light, whose purpose is to provide resources to support Baylor efforts to become the preeminent Christian research university.

Of the more than 2,000 gifts and pledges to date, Baylor Libraries has received $3.6 million in support of endowment, providing sustaining resources toward scholarships and program funds. The Baylor Family has also provided $4.9 million in pledges, gifts and gifts in kind for current needs, with another $1.7 million toward the Dean’s Excellence Fund, giving Dean Jeffry Archer resources and flexibility to meet Baylor Libraries’ immediate needs, as well as provide technology updates, secure research materials and improve student experience throughout the campus’s 11 libraries and research centers, as well as the digital collections and other student resources, such as the University Writing Center and HelpDesk+.

“I am grateful for the Baylor Family’s support of Baylor University and our University Library system,” said Baylor President Linda A. Livingstone, Ph.D. “As our students’ needs change, so do our Libraries. We are grateful for the resources to help ensure that the Libraries will remain a critical, useful tool for our students, no matter the changes in technology or learning style. For so many of our students, today’s Libraries represent a place where classroom principles are put to real-world use, and where friendships and partnerships are forged through collaborative and experiential learning. We are thankful for the many alumni, parents and friends whose gifts have made these opportunities possible for future generations.”

Baylor Libraries is among the first academic units at Baylor to reach its preliminary, initial fundraising goal through the Give Light Campaign, Baylor’s $1.1 billion comprehensive fundraising campaign. In May, Baylor announced the University’s surpassing of the $1 billion mark in the campaign, the most ever raised during one campaign effort.

“The future is truly bright for Baylor Libraries, thanks to the incredible support of Baylor’s alumni and donors,” said Dean Archer. “Our mission is to lead as an innovative research library that undergirds scholarship, fosters teaching and build communities. These important tenets require resources and support to achieve, and we celebrate the generosity of our Baylor Family through the Give Light Campaign.”

Of the $3.6 million raised toward endowment, Baylor Libraries saw 10 endowed funds created, providing perpetual support for research, archiving, technology and facility support. Those funds include:

  • Ben Rogers W. R. Poage Legislative Library Educational Endowed Fund
  • Grant and Donell Teaff Athletics Archive Fund
  • Jim and Lou James Endowed Fund
  • Thomas-Vernon Library Endowed Fund
  • Robert and Beth Faulkner Fund
  • Pattie Orr Graduate Research Commons Endowed Fund
  • Herbert H. and Nell T. Johnson Endowed Fund for The Texas Collection
  • Anne Birkhead Endowed Fund for Technology and Innovation
  • Merrie Beckham Alumni by Choice Endowed Fund
  • Mary Shelton Florence Endowed Fund for Armstrong Browning Library

Support for the Baylor Libraries through the Give Light Campaign has featured a rich mix of current gifts, as well as alumni and friends who have made gifts in kind of valuable portraits, historic political papers and family histories, and planned gifts through estates and family trusts.

Baylor Libraries has seen significant support for current needs through gifts to the Dean’s Excellence Fund and such programs as the Library Book Fund, which has received more than $255,000 in support since the campaign’s start. The Library Book Fund provides resources for the acquisition of new research materials for students and faculty. Such gifts provide a direct link between faculty and student success and the philanthropy of the Baylor Family.

The Give Light Campaign provides a strong foundation from which Baylor Libraries can grow, under the direction of Dean Jeffry Archer, who came to Baylor in June 2020 from McGill University in Montreal, Canada. At McGill, Dean Archer served as Associate Dean of User Services, having previously served more than 20 years with the University of Chicago Library.

The Give Light Campaign undergirds Illuminate, Baylor’s strategic plan to become a preeminent, top-tier Christian research university. The campaign’s priorities center around growing the University’s endowment to provide enduring support for faculty, research and student scholarships, helping Baylor attract the best and brightest students and faculty. Other funding priorities include expanding the academic enterprise and resourcing academic departments to allow for growth in academic areas of focus: Health; Data Sciences; Materials Science; Human Flourishing, Leadership and Ethics; and Baylor in Latin America. The campaign also has funded capital projects to increase and modernize classroom and faculty space within Tidwell Bible Building and build new facilities to better meet the needs of alumni and fans, as well as faculty and students. Current funding for emergency needs and to enhance student services and student life also are included in the campaign.

For more information or to support Give Light: The Campaign for Baylor, visit


Baylor University is a private Christian University and a nationally ranked research institution. The University provides a vibrant campus community for more than 19,000 students by blending interdisciplinary research with an international reputation for educational excellence and a faculty commitment to teaching and scholarship. Chartered in 1845 by the Republic of Texas through the efforts of Baptist pioneers, Baylor is the oldest continually operating University in Texas. Located in Waco, Baylor welcomes students from all 50 states and more than 90 countries to study a broad range of degrees among its 12 nationally recognized academic divisions.