Lifetime Giving Society

Gifts made to Oakland University make a tremendous difference in the lives of Oakland students. Thanks to your support, Oakland University can continue its tradition of delivering excellence while educating the leaders of tomorrow.

In appreciation for these gifts, donors receive recognition through membership in one of several giving societies. These societies honor individuals who contribute a minimum of $10,000 over their lifetime and corporations that contribute a minimum of $50,000 in cumulative gifts. Oakland is grateful for the generosity of the individuals, corporations and foundations who have made the following giving societies possible:

The Matilda Wilson Founders Society

Recognizes donors who contribute cumulative gifts of $10,000,000 or more. This society honors Oakland University benefactor and founder Matilda R. Wilson and pays homage to her commitment as a University founder. Her visionary gift donating the 1,500-acre Meadow Brook estate and $2 million established MSU-Oakland.

The Varner Society

Recognizes donors who contribute cumulative gifts of $5,000,000 – $9,999,999. The Varner Society recognizes Oakland University’s founding chancellor, Woody Varner, and his leadership and vision for OU.

The Golden Oaks Society

Recognizes donors who contribute cumulative gifts of $1,000,000 – $4,999,999. This society is named in honor of Oakland University’s charter faculty members, who often referred to themselves as “The Old Oaks.”

The Meadow Brook Society

Recognizes donors who contribute cumulative gifts of $500,000 – $999,999. Benefactors Alfred G. and Matilda R. Wilson donated their estate, which was called Meadow Brook, and $2 million to establish MSU-Oakland, now Oakland University. This society is a tribute to their gift, which made OU possible.

The Pioneer Society

Recognizes donors who contribute cumulative gifts of $250,000 – $499,999. Those graduating from Oakland University prior to 1998 are known as Pioneers, named for Pioneer Pete, OU’s first mascot for the NCAA Division II Pioneers. The Grizz was adopted in 1998 after OU athletic teams changed to the Division I Golden Grizzlies.

The O'Dowd Society

Recognizes donors who contribute cumulative gifts of $100,000 – $249,999. This society, formerly known as President's Council, recognizes Oakland University’s first president, Donald O’Dowd, and his wife, Jan, for their 20 years of service to Oakland University.

The Matilda R. Wilson Society

Recognizes donors who contribute cumulative gifts of $50,000 – $99,999. The Matilda R. Wilson Society is another tribute to Matilda Wilson and the value she placed on education and community service.

The Alfred G. Wilson Society

Recognizes donors who contribute cumulative gifts of $25,000 – $49,999. This society is named in honor of Alfred G. Wilson, whose vision and financial commitment led to the establishment of Oakland University.

The 1957 Society

Recognizes donors who contribute cumulative gifts of $10,000 – $24,999. This society, formerly known as President's Club, commemorates the founding year of MSU-Oakland, now Oakland University.