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Big Green Donor of the Week: John Pauley

John Pauley

Oct. 30, 2013

Hometown: Charleston


Wife: Deborah

Children: Angie, Carissa, & Jonathan

Occupation: Financial Services Professional, New York Life, 38 years

Marshall degree: BBA - Business Management (1966-70)

Marshall University always has been and always will be "home" to those that have attended here. There is a family atmosphere that is unique because of its bond with the community and the adversity both the campus and city of Huntington shared and overcame together. From the unforgettable moments in the Veterans Memorial Field House to the tragedy in November 1970, students at Marshall made memories that last a lifetime. This week's Donor of the Week, John Pauley, was one of those students.

What is your fondest memory of your time as a student at Marshall?

To say the 1960s was a fun time would be a considerable understatement. The country and culture was changing and Marshall's campus was no exception. The unique thing I remember was that everyone got along and that you always felt a part of the campus community. The memories shared with my ZBT fraternity brothers ... games ... parties ... community ... and the friendships that endure still today.

Who is your favorite Marshall athlete and why?

Certainly the legendary basketball teams of that era -- with George Stone, Bob Redd, Danny D'Antoni, Russell Lee, Ty Collins, etc. electrifying the Field House -- have to rank at the top. Watching the 1992 and 1996 Football Teams win NCAA national championships with my son Jonathan is a memory that I will cherish forever. What a fitting tribute to those who perished on November 14, 1970.

However, my personal favorites would be Dennis Blevins and Mark Andrews, members of the 1970 Football Team who were both friends and Zeta Beta Tau fraternity brothers who died in the plane crash that November. Their dedication, hard work, unwavering commitment and positive attitude for the MU football program served as the foundation for the successes we have accomplished to date.



Their focus was on winning and to that end they never wavered. For those of us who "endured" the endless losses at Fairfield Stadium, I often wondered how our team ... and my good friends ... managed to get up for the next game. They summed it up quite simply: "It's not always going to be like this. One day, we will be Champions!!" Unfortunately, our team didn't have that opportunity ... but the rest is history.

How often do you get back to Marshall from Charleston for games, events?

I have been a season ticketholder and Big Green contributor for several years. Living in Charleston provides me the opportunity to attend the majority of football and basketball games. In addition, I am active in the Marshall Quarterback Club of Charleston, MU Big Green Foundation, Marshall Alumni Association and the ZBT-GE Scholarship Fund.

Why do you feel your support of the Big Green and Vision Campaign are crucial to Marshall athletics?

People sometimes ask me why I am so passionate about the Herd. Marshall University is a very unique place. The school, community, students, athletes, fans, and alumni share the special bond that is Marshall University. It was one of the best times of my life and I'll always treasure the memories and the friendships. It's hard to explain unless you were there ... Suffice it to say: "WE ARE .. MARSHALL!"

I have been blessed with a career that offers me the opportunity to help families achieve their financial goals and dreams. Dr. Robert Alexander (business) and Professor Ernie Cole (insurance) provided me with the tools and vision for my career. My mother instilled in me at an early age the thought that if you were blessed with success, you have the responsibility and an obligation to "give back."

There is no question that the Vision Campaign is just that ... an opportunity to position Marshall University for success in the future. Walking across campus is somewhat overwhelming compared to what it was "back in the day." President Dr. Stephen Kopp, AD Mike Hamrick, MU Foundation Director Ron Area, Big Green Foundation Director John Sutherland and others are making the dream a reality. The success of this campaign is everyone's responsibility.

If we all do something, we can make it happen!!

I would encourage everyone to get involved at whatever level you can afford ... Together we can make a difference that will provide students and athletes a quality educational experience for generations to come.