Linda Walker Kelly '69

Why she is involved in the WUAA in her own words.

What do you love about Willamette?

I value my many Willamette relationships – with my classmates from the 60's, with the students of today, with faculty members, with administration, with fellow board members – a sense of community.

I love how, when on campus, I become part of the student-faculty bustle. I love auditing classes and the resulting friendships I have made with current students and professors. I love it when I run into someone with Willamette connections, and find we have much in common. I love the fact that both my children attended Willamette, which makes Willamette a shared family experience.

Why do you volunteer for the Alumni Association?

I find fellow alumni to be fascinating creatures! As two of our three children are/will be WU alumni, I want the university and the alumni program to remain relevant and meaningful. During the years we lived in Japan, we enjoyed visits from then-President Jerry Hudson, Professors Buzz & Libby Yocum, and many fellow alumni. We have been enriched by continued relationships with staff, professors and alumni.

Why do you give to Willamette?

Willamette is my community, my family (literally and figuratively). Willamette has given me so much. It is only logical that I give back in any way I can. In one's lifetime — if one is lucky — one experiences a passion, a belonging to an organization that one believes in and which adds to the meaning of one’s life. Willamette is that organization for me. What have I given to Willamette? On one level, I have given Willamette my children, my time, my passion. And it only follows that I would want to give any treasure I might have as well.

Why is donor support to Willamette?

Support is important for two reasons. First, much of Willamette’s culture is based on our motto, “Not alone unto ourselves are we born.” I have been the beneficiary of so many things during my association with Willamette. It is only fair that I pay it forward, and assist others to experience the community that is Willamette, in any way I can.

Second, with rising costs of education, we should all make it as easy as possible for the next generation of Willamette students. Any investment of time, talent or treasure is an investment in our future.