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Auditorium named to honor Campaign chair’s family


Illinois College announced that the newly renovated auditorium in Crispin Hall will officially be named the Del ’72 and Lisa Dunham Auditorium in honor of a lead gift made by the family to the College.

Del and Lisa
                  Del and Lisa Dunham

Del ’72 and Lisa Dunham, who reside in Texas, have long been leaders in the Illinois College community. They are members of the Illinois College Varsity Club and lifetime members of the Illinois College Society, the premier annual giving circle at the College. The Dunhams established the Jack Mann and Fred Pilcher Physics and Mathematics Research Support Fund in October 2014 to support physics and math students and faculty in conducting research, and later established the Del ’72 and Lisa Dunham Family Endowed Scholarship. Del has served on the Illinois College Board of Trustees for over 15 years and currently serves as chair of Inspiring Achievement: The Campaign for Illinois College

The upgraded auditorium was unveiled at the start of the fall semester. The space meets a wide range of campus needs, serving as a large-scale active-learning classroom and dynamic gathering place for campus and community events. Several classes are being held in the auditorium this semester, and it was the site of a recent alumni reception at Homecoming. 

Revamping the outdated building is a major initiative of Inspiring Achievement. The auditorium represents the first phase of the plan to transform Crispin, which was built in 1963, into a modern educational facility. When completed, it will also provide faculty the resources needed to create innovative academic programs and conduct cutting-edge research with students.

The Dunhams see the renovation of Crispin as a way to further inspire a love of learning in a new generation of Illinois College students. They hope others enjoy the new auditorium and are moved to support future phases of the project. 

“The renovation of Crispin is a cornerstone, not only of the Campaign, but also to the overall learning environment at Illinois College,” Del said. “We are proud to have been part of the renovation and look forward to the many years it will provide a distinct service to Illinois College and its students.” 

President Barbara A. Farley expressed gratitude for the lasting contributions of the Dunham family: “The entire Illinois College community, especially our students, will benefit for many years because of the generosity of the Dunham family. They have helped ignite an excitement on campus, and we are thankful for their leadership and vision.” 

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About Illinois College

Founded in 1829, Illinois College is a residential liberal arts college fostering academic excellence rooted in opportunities for experiential learning while preparing students for lifelong success. The college is located in Jacksonville, Illinois. With an enrollment of more than 1,000 students, the college offers over 50 undergraduate programs. In 1932 the society of Phi Beta Kappa established a chapter at Illinois College, and it remains one of only 11 in the state.

Illinois College is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association.

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