Loyal alumnus leaves legacy gift that enabled College to complete purchase of newest campus facility
Kentucky Wesleyan College has announced the naming of the Jack T. Wells ’77 Activity Center at 3300 Frederica St. The newest campus facility is named for dedicated alumnus and former Board of Trustee Chair, Jack Wells ’77, who passed away in August 2020. The Jack T. Wells Charitable Trust recently confirmed a transformational bequest to his alma mater, which also includes the establishment of the Jack T. Wells Endowed Scholarship Fund at KWC.
“We could not be more thankful to Jack Wells, whose legacy will live on at Kentucky Wesleyan College in numerous ways,” said President Thomas Mitzel. “Jack’s love of his alma mater and his passion for giving back is again exemplified in this legacy gift. We are delighted to recognize Jack with the naming of the Activity Center and thankful for the many Owensboro-area students who will benefit from his endowed scholarship. We express our sincere thanks, also, to the co-executors of the Jack T. Wells Charitable Trust, Mr. Mike Simpson and Mr. Eugene Hargis.”
Wells graduated from Kentucky Wesleyan in 1977 and served on the College’s Board of Trustees from 1994-2020, including time as chair. He was inducted into the KWC Alumni Hall of Fame as a member of the Class of 2014 and recognized as the Outstanding Alumnus in 2011. Wells was a successful businessman and entrepreneur who always invested in his hometown and his alma mater.
KWC entered into an ownership agreement for the former Legacy Owensboro church property on Dec. 31, 2019. The facility was renamed Activity Hall in 2020 and faculty and staff poured over 400 hours of work into renovating the space for its eventual first usage in the fall semester that same year. Throughout the 2020-21 academic year, the space became invaluable as a multitude of activities were hosted in it, including Campus Ministries Chapel services, campus-wide meetings, the Wesleyan Singers and other vocal group rehearsals and concerts, the Kentucky Wesleyan Theatre Arts Program’s performance of “Guys and Dolls,” KWC wrestling practices and more.
This past summer a further 400-plus hours of community work was put into the facility, with an additional influx of budgeted work by professional contractors to provide new flooring and furniture throughout and a state-of-the-art audio/visual system in the Auditorium. Continuing projects include completion of another 24-hour convenience store, an additional commuter lounge and an outdoor dining and gathering pavilion.