USD receives $8.5 million gift from Buhler family University of South Dakota President James Abbott, at right, pauses to speak to Lucy Buhler and her daughter, Natalie Chang, at a press conference Oct. 8 on the USD campus. Paul Van Buren, chairman of the USD Foundation Board of Trustees, and Abbott announced at the press conference that the late Walter Buhler, a 1960 graduate of the USD School of Business, bequeathed $8.5 million to the university over the next 25 years. by David Lias Back in 1960, Paul Van Buren grew to be friends with Walter A. Buhler. Back then, however, he could have no idea of just how valuable his friendship with Buhler could be.
The two men were both classmates in the USD School of Business. Van Buren, who now lives in Los Altos, CA and serves as chairman of the USD Foundation Board of Trustees, announced that his classmate, who died recently, has left a $8.5 million bequest to the university.
�It is the largest individual gift ever received for the benefit of the university�s Vermillion campus,� Van Buren said at a press conference Oct. 8 at the Coyote Student Center on the USD campus. �The total value of the gift over the next 25 years will be approximately $8.5 million, with additional income from a continuing trust fund.�
An initial gift of $1.7 million has been received by the foundation and will be used for the anticipated construction of new business school facilities at USD, Van Buren added.
�The remaining amount will come to the university as income from a perpetual trust, with annual income projected to be $275,000 designated for scholarships to be known as the Walter A. and Lucy S. Buhler scholarships,� he said.
A priority of the new scholarship plan will be given to Asian students studying at the university.
�Walt was a man of global vision who understood the need to involve his alma mater in the emerging global economy and society,� Van Buren said.
Buhler�s career took him from his hometown of Delmont through the USD School of Business to a worldwide career with the Arthur Andersen & Company accounting and management consulting firm.
�In several conversations that we had about The University of South Dakota, it was so apparent that Walt believed strongly that much of the success in life that he attained, and he attained a great deal of success both personally and professionally, was due to the education that he received here at The University of South Dakota, particularly the business school,� USD President James Abbott said.