CONTACT: TOM DE PRENGER
Director of Development
Speical University Initiatives
UI Foundation News
500 Levitt Center for University Advancement
Iowa City IA 52242
Phone: (319) 335-3305 or (800) 648-6973
Release: Feb. 5, 2001
Dubuque-area students benefit from scholarship
IOWA CITY, Iowa -- A desire to aid high school students from his hometown
has led a former Dubuque-area educator and his wife to fully endow a scholarship
at the University of Iowa.
The James R. and Zoe E. Connor Scholarship, created by the Connors
$100,000 gift to the University of Iowa Foundation, provides a permanent scholarship
for deserving graduates of Dubuque Senior High School. The annual scholarship
was awarded this academic year for the first time to Richard Kirkendall, a
UI freshman majoring in music.
Creating the scholarship was a way for Connor to demonstrate his appreciation
for a UI education that has served him for half a century. It was also a way
to help Dubuque-area students experience the same educational benefit. "I
wanted to recognize both institutions with a single gift," James Connor
said. "Im grateful for the excellent education I received at Dubuque
Senior High and the University of Iowa. I hope this scholarship helps students
complete their studies at the university."
"This support will help build scholarship support for generations of
exceptional Dubuque students attending the University of Iowa," said
Mark Warner, UIs director of student financial aid.
The Connor Scholarship is awarded to a Dubuque Senior High graduate who
is a member of the National Honor Society and has the highest GPA of Dubuque
students attending the UI. The scholarship is renewable for up to three years.
James Connor earned a UI degree in liberal arts in 1951 and masters
and doctorate degrees from the University of Wisconsin. He was chancellor
of the University of Wisconsin at Whitewater from 1974 to 1991, and provost,
academic vice president and professor of history at Western Illinois University.
He also held administrative and teaching posts at universities in California,
Illinois, Virginia and Wisconsin. Before retiring, he served as executive
director of the James S. Kemper Foundation, an independent, charitable organization
based in Long Grove, Ill.
Zoe Connor, a native of Belgrade, Yugoslavia, met her husband following
World War II while working as an interpreter for the Allied Military Government.
She held numerous volunteer appointments at institutions where her husband
worked. At the University of Wisconsin in Whitewater, Zoe Connor also served
as associate to the chancellor, a volunteer staff member of the administrative
The Connors have supported numerous UI programs and are members of the Presidents
Club, the honor club recognizing the UIs most generous contributors.
The Connor gift is part of the universitys planned comprehensive campaign
to advance the UIs strategic goals for the years 2000-2005. The campaign,
which is in its early stages and for which no final dollar goal has been established,
will be conducted under the guidance of the UI Foundation and will raise funds
to substantially increase the number of UI merit- and need-based scholarships,
as well as the number of endowed faculty chairs and professorships; support
eight new educational and research facilities; fund outreach and service programs
to benefit individuals, families and communities throughout the state of Iowa;
build the UIs endowment; and launch new initiatives in the arts, sciences,
business, health care and other fields.
The UI Foundation is the preferred channel for private contributions to
all areas of the university. Foundation staff work with alumni and friends
to generate funds for scholarships, professorships, facilities improvements,
equipment purchases, research and other UI initiatives.