Ozarks Technical Community College announces $500,000 gift for OTC Lebanon Center

Ozarks Technical Community College announces $500,000 gift for OTC Lebanon Center

Thursday, May 09, 2013

Media Contact

Mark Miller
College Director of Communication 417.447.2655 millerm@otc.edu
Laura French
Coordinator of Public Information 417.447.2659 frenchl@otc.edu

A gift of 50 acres adjacent to the existing OTC Lebanon Center has been presented to the OTC Foundation, the fundraising arm of Ozarks Technical Community College. The property, which is valued at more than $500,000, was gifted to the college by Reuben and the late Mary Lou Casey of San Clemente, Calif. The Caseys previously presented the college with the two buildings and more than 13 acres of land that became the current OTC Lebanon Center; the couple's original gift is the largest the college has ever received, with a value of approximately $2.6 million.

During an event held Thursday at the OTC Lebanon Center, the college announced the gift and revealed its master plan for the center. In addition to the two buildings already in place, the master plan includes buildings for the college's allied health programs and general education programs, administration offices, an agricultural services building, and an arboretum. The center will be enhanced by green spaces throughout the property and a central water feature, and will include plenty of parking for the growing student population.

"We are honored and excited today, as we thank Mr. Casey for this generous gift and look forward to the future of OTC in Lebanon," said Dr. Hal Higdon, chancellor of Ozarks Technical Community College. "The additional education and workforce development opportunities that we can now bring to the OTC Lebanon Center will have a significant impact on this community."

"The investment Mr. and Mrs. Casey have made in OTC is incredible, and we are delighted that Mr. Casey was able to be present for today's event", said Cliff Davis, vice chancellor and executive director of the OTC Foundation. "We are so grateful for the relationship the Caseys have formed with our institution, and we look forward to seeing the fruits of that relationship in the Lebanon community for years to come."

Reuben and Mary Lou Casey have operated a warehousing company in San Clemente, Calif., since the late 1970's. They completed two buildings in Lebanon, Mo., in 2007; in 2009, due to changes in the economy, they began searching for an educational institution to which they could donate the buildings. The Caseys chose OTC after the college presented the couple with a thorough plan for how it would use the facilities, and have maintained a relationship with the college ever since. Mary Lou Casey passed away in October of 2012.

Classes began in the OTC Lebanon Center's current facilities, located off of Interstate 44 on Highway MM, in the fall of 2011. The first of the two buildings to open, Casey Hall, is home to classrooms, computer labs, technical labs, a student lounge and student services department. Additional classrooms and labs in Casey Hall are scheduled to open in the fall of 2013. The building to the east of Casey Hall is home to the center's workforce development and technical education programs.