Scholarships — Gifts for the Future

The challenges of pursuing a business education at Commerce are many — and the concern of how to finance that education is not the least among them. While a degree from the University of Illinois has always represented an outstanding value, particularly when compared with private institutions of similarly high academic caliber, meeting educational costs remains a formidable obligation for many students and their families. Thanks to the generosity of alumni and friends of Commerce, more privately funded scholarships are available than ever before, giving our students precious freedom to take full advantage of the many opportunities offered at CBA.

In the stories below, we invite you to meet some of the donors who have recently established scholarships at the college — and some of the students who have benefited by their generosity.

Dauten Scholarship

Receiving from the university and the college. Then — giving back again. Just as this is the tale of so many donors to Commerce, so too it is the story of the late Gloria Dauten, whose $50,000 bequest has created the Gloria A. & Paul M. Dauten, Jr., Scholarship Fund, providing need-based scholarships to academically qualified undergraduates enrolled in the College of Commerce.

Gloria Dauten
Gloria, who died in the spring of 1997 at the age of 70, spent forty years as president of Dauten Enterprises Ltd. By the time she completed her work, her Champaign real estate development and holding company owned forty apartment buildings in Illinois, Florida, and Tennessee. Locally, that added up to somewhere between 150 and 200 units, rented to an annual population which could swell to as many as 400 students. "She probably built between fifteen and twenty buildings over her career," estimates her son Kent Dauten, himself a venture capitalist, who works for Keystone Capital, Inc., in Chicago. "She enjoyed construction, which was a rather unusual side line for a woman in the 1960s. In fact at that time it was unusual for a woman even to be in business." Of course, Gloria did have a partner — her husband Paul Dauten, Jr., a Commerce faculty member who taught undergraduate and graduate-level courses in management for twenty-five years and retired as professor emeritus of business administration. Recalls Kent: "She and my Dad were a team in terms of the family business. They collaborated on all major business decisions — acquiring new properties, new construction, financing. "
Both Gloria, whose maiden name was Goeckeler, and Paul came from St. Louis, and when they left, they said good-bye to extended families on both sides. First stop was Florida State University. Paul, who held a Ph.D. in economics from Washington University, taught courses there, and she did graduate work. In 1954, the year before Kent was born, they arrived on the Illinois campus, where Paul took a post as professor of management. "She and my father were very much self-made. They lived very humbly in old Army barracks housing when they first moved to Champaign," notes Kent. "These experiences led her to want to help people." After the Dautens had been in the C/U area for around seven or eight years, they began to develop their student-housing business. Eventually, says Kent, "she was managing as many as eight to ten buildings — with one part-time maintenance person and one part-time assistant."

"I think she really loved the students, and the youthful sense that comes from dealing with kids," her son continues. "There were headaches, but she saw the positive side. She definitely enjoyed her daily interactions and relationships with the students. She took a genuine interest in their personal lives. She was a little bit of a housemother — and for many of the students who lived in her properties she was one of the only adults around on a daily basis."

Gloria was also quite active as a sorority alumna. While at Washington University in St. Louis, where she earned a B.S. in accounting, she had belonged to ZTA. She went on to take a characteristically energetic interest in the chapter at the University of Illinois, bringing her special skills to the running of the house (such as the hiring of cooks and housemothers), and she was also involved with the Panhellenic Council. "As a family we lived and breathed the University of Illinois," Kent recalls. While he opted to go East for his education, attending Dartmouth College and Harvard Business School, his sister, Sherryl Marsh, chose to stay closer to home. She graduated from Illinois in 1970 with an A.B. in economics, then followed her mother's footsteps into the real estate business, becoming owner of Marsh Apartments in Champaign. She is married to Roger Marsh, a research engineer at Beckman Institute, who is also a Presidents Council member and an alumnus of the College of Engineering.

Kent notes that his mother thus "had a very close linkage with the university in a number of different ways," adding that she also occasionally served as a guest lecturer, speaking on entrepreneurship to classes in the Executive MBA program. "She would give talks on how she got into business, how she built her business up, and the risks and challenges she faced along the way." Active in professional and civic organizations, she was founder and president of the Champaign-Urbana Apartment Association and Champaign Homes, and served on the boards of a range of institutions including SLM, Bank One, Cole Hospital, and Carle Foundation.

"She was also a huge sports fan, and regularly attended the basketball and football games," Kent recalls. "She obviously had very strong and positive feelings about the university." And these feelings seem to have grown even stronger after her husband died in the summer of 1980, at the age of 65, less than a year after his retirement. Also a generous benefactor of the Fighting Illini Scholarship Fund, she became a Presidents Council member in 1983, and was a recipient of the university's Fred H. Turner Award. She established the Gloria A. & Paul M. Dauten, Jr., Scholarship Fund in 1995 and was elected to membership in the University of Illinois Foundation the following year. "As she looked at the idea of potentially giving, it led her to conclude that the University of Illinois was a natural choice," Kent concludes. "She came to the point in her career and her life where she had created wealth and she became interested in setting up a fund that could help students. She loved the university and it was a natural idea to give back to the university, for it was the source of a lot of her wealth and life experience."

Eisenberg Foundation Scholarship

Harold Eisenburg
It was the most bittersweet of triumphs. On the evening of September 13, more than two hundred family members, friends, and colleagues gathered for a dinner in Chicago honoring the establishment of the Harold E. Eisenberg Foundation. However, the man for whom the foundation was named could not be present for the occasion. Harold Eisenberg had died suddenly nine months before. And thus those who knew and loved him rallied to ensure that his name will never be forgotten, and that his memory will be honored by the growing number of people who benefit through the work of the foundation. Among those people is Mark Zimmerman, recipient of the first Harold E. Eisenberg Foundation Scholarship. A CBA senior with an impressive record of community service and a 3.24 grade point average (on the 4-point university scale), Mark already holds his Illinois Real Estate License.
"He is a terrific young man," observed Peter Eisenberg, one of Harold's three children. "We really enjoyed meeting him, and having the University of Illinois represented at the dinner. It went to our feelings about the meaning of what we are trying to do with the foundation." The scholarship has been established to benefit juniors and seniors studying real estate in the finance program at Commerce. It is one of three philanthropic initiatives undertaken by the foundation, which was launched last winter by Sheila Eisenberg, and her children, Peter, Scott, and Lesley, within a few weeks of Harold Einsenberg's untimely death. A highly successful real estate developer, he graduated from University of Illinois in 1967, with a B.A. in biological science, and also graduated from the Law School of the University of Southern California. He developed shopping centers, retail and office complexes, and residential projects throughout the greater Chicago area, including Highland Park, where he and his family made their home. He was president of Lake Shore Development Corporation and a member of the board of trustees for the International Council of Shopping Centers. He had, in short, everything to live for, when liver cancer suddenly claimed his life on January 22. He was 53. "Harold was a good friend, as well as a business associate and partner for twenty years," said Dick Hulina, one of a number of friends and associates who have helped the Eisenberg family with their work on the foundation. Hulina (B.S. Civil Engineering 1966) began his association with Harold Eisenberg at Homart Development Company, a high-profile real estate development company that was a subsidiary of Sears. "Harold was very involved in his work and his family," Hulina said. "He was genuinely dedicated and concerned about other people."

Said Peter Eisenberg: "During shiva, a number of my father's business partners and associates approached us and suggested we start a foundation. We saw this as an opportunity for all of us to come together and discuss my father's goals and ideals, and to honor those goals and ideals. We also saw it as a way to give back to the institution that gave him his start." Along with the scholarship, the foundation has established a Mentor Program that creates opportunities for college students to spend time with real estate professionals in order to see first-hand how things happen in the real world of business. The foundation is also providing funds to support the state-of-the-art cancer research programs at Northwestern Memorial Hospital, where Harold Eisenberg was treated.

"There's a lot of momentum gaining in the foundation, and it's only going to grow," concluded Peter Eisenberg, "It's something that's going to go a long way into the future. There's a lot of dedication to this effort. And we look forward to a long relationship with U of I."

Heiken Scholarship

"Our purpose in creating this scholarship fund is to recognize junior and senior students who, while maintaining high academic standards, have also made significant contributions to their college expenses. The goal is to relieve the students from some of the financial pressure so they can turn more of their attention to preparing for the competition in life after college. Our first recipient is a perfect example of our expectations."

-Rick & Maisie Heiken

Maisie and Rick Heiken, both graduates of CBA, live in Dunlap, Illinois, and work in nearby Peoria. She is a vice president and senior financial consultant for Merrill Lynch and he is a manager in the Business Intelligence Group of Caterpillar Inc. Their lives, leading to CBA and Peoria, began at very different points on the globe. Rick is a native of El Paso, Illinois. Maisie was born and raised in Hong Kong.  After 

Rick & Maisie Heiken
 graduating CBA in 1972 with a B.S. in economics, Rick joined Caterpillar. In 1978, he moved to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, where he was the district sales representative responsible for Malaysia, Sri Lanka, and Indonesia. About the same time, Maisie joined Caterpillar's headquarters in Hong Kong, where she was responsible for the company's meeting and tradeshow activity in Southeast Asia. They met through their work for Caterpillar, and were married in 1981. When the Heikens returned to Peoria in 1985, Maisie began studies which culminated in 1989 when she graduated from Commerce with a B.S., with high honors, in finance. She joined Merrill Lynch in 1991 and was named vice president in 1996. She is a member of the Merrill Lynch Circle of Excellence, a prestigious club recognizing outstanding performance. The Heikens are members of the Consular Circle of the University of Illinois Presidents Council. In addition to Hong Kong and Dunlap, they have also lived in Jakarta, Indonesia, and Geneva, Switzerland.

The Edward F. and Maisie L. Heiken Scholarship, established in March 1999, is open to Commerce juniors and seniors majoring in finance or marketing, with a GPA of at least 3.0 (on the 4.0 scale). It provides full tuition and fees for two semesters. Preference is given to students who have completed or accepted an internship, and who have contributed substantially toward their college expenses. In 1989, the Heikens also made the University of Illinois the beneficiary of a testamentary trust. The gift will support the study of international business and cross-cultural management at CBA, and will be funded by an estate distribution.

The first recipient of the Edward F. and Maisie L. Heiken Scholarship is Colleen Elizabeth Tedor, a senior marketing major from Park Ridge. She has held internships with Enterprise rent-a-car in Schiller Park and the Tooling & Manufacturing Association in Park Ridge, as well as an array of jobs, ranging from volleyball instructor and restaurant hostess to residence hall desk clerk and receptionist for the dean's office in the College of Applied Life Studies. Over the course of her college career she has received several other scholarships, including a Garner Leadership award and a scholarship for students who work more than ten hours a week, both from the university, and awards from the Maine South High School Mother's Club, the Park Ridge Veteran's Association, and the Park Ridge Care Center.
Of the Heiken Scholarship, she said: "It really helped out. This is the first year I didn't have to take out loans or ask for money from my parents." The scholarship is an especially big boon in the Tedor household, where education is extremely important. Colleen's mother just graduated from the University of Illinois at Chicago, with a master's in social work. Daniel, her brother, is a sophomore at Oakton Community College. Her other brother, Christopher, is a high school senior at Maine South in Park Ridge and plans to attend college next year. Colleen also has a sister, Megan, though she's a little more distant from university life for the moment, being in the eighth grade. "The Heiken scholarship really helped out my family," Colleen said. "It also means that I can use the money that I made from my internship this summer to begin paying off my loans."

John L. and Ruth B. Morton Award

The John L. and Ruth B. Morton Award has recently been established to provide scholarship support to Commerce students majoring in accountancy and business administration. "A good many young people can use the help," noted Ruth Morton, who recently visited the Illinois campus and talked with InSight about the award, made as a tribute to her late husband.

John Morton grew up in Champaign and graduated from Commerce in 1937 with a B.S. in accountancy. While at Illinois he played the sousaphone in the U of I Marching Band, as befitted his upbringing in a musical family. An avid swimmer throughout his life, he was also a member of the university swim team. His sisters, Eleanor Busch and the late Louise Ackerman, both attended Illinois as well.

Pictured on the far left is John Morton, with sousaphone.

After graduation, John Morton went to work at Burgess Battery Company in Freeport, Illinois, where he met Ruth Irene Breymann, his future spouse. Eventually, life was to lead them far from the Midwest, to the bright and limitless desert horizons of Arizona. When a lengthy strike paralyzed the Burgess operation, Morton sought work at the U.S. Ordnance Depot in Indiana, then joined the Air Force as a staff auditor in 1942. He was first dispatched to Luke Field, outside Phoenix, followed by stations in New York and Miami. In 1946 he returned to civilian life and to Phoenix, joining the Del E. Webb Construction Co., as an accountant. The timing was phenomenal — already a highly regarded construction outfit, the company was soon to embark on the creation of the fabulously successful Sun City concept. On September 1 of that year, he and Ruth were married in Freeport, her hometown. On September 2, they were in Phoenix — "No time for a honeymoon!" smiled Ruth, who went to work not long after in the accounting department of Walsh Bros. Office Equipment.

In 1981, after thirty-five years in the company's accounting department, John Morton retired from Del Webb. Ruth also retired from Walsh that year, after a tenure just six months shorter than her husband's. The following January, the Mortons moved from Phoenix to Sun City. Very active in the Lutheran Church, they enjoyed a busy and contented lifestyle for many years. The couple celebrated their fiftieth wedding anniversary on September 1, 1996. John died the following year, on October 7, 1997.

Long fascinated by the Del Webb phenomenon, Ruth is a member of the board of the Sun Cities Area Historical Society, which is housed in the community's very first model home, built in 1959 and now a registered historical landmark.

Ruth and John Morton

They were also members of the Sun Cities Illini Club, and Ruth has served as club treasurer. She noted that the inspiration for the Morton Award came from an earlier contribution she made to the Walter Breymann Scholarship in History, established in LAS in memory of her late brother. An Illinois graduate, who held Ph.D. ('50) and M.A. ('47) degrees in history and a B.S. ('41) in education, Walter Breymann was a history professor at Drake University in Des Moines. He died in 1994.

"I began thinking, `Why not a scholarship in John's name, too?'" Ruth observed. "John himself lost his father when he was only ten years old. His mother taught piano to support the family. He was the sort of student you would want to give a scholarship to —
a deserving student of high academic achievement. John and I didn't have any children of our own. And certainly there are a lot of hard-working young people who can use some assistance."

The John L. and Ruth B. Morton Endowment will grow each year, through a required minimum distribution from an IRA in John's estate. "It's money I really don't need in addition to the other assets we accumulated," noted Ruth. "And the taxes are eliminated each year since it's a charitable gift." Ruth feels that assisting deserving students who need financial help is so important that she also made the endowment a partial beneficiary of the IRA in her own estate. Through such generosity and foresight, the endowment will eventually increase to the six-figure level.


Robert P. Reuss Scholarship

"Of all the things that Dad had accomplished and all the institutions he had an affinity for — and there were a lot — clearly it was the College of Commerce at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign that he held closest to his heart." Thus does Rob Reuss explain the feelings his father held toward his alma mater, feelings that inspired the establishment of the Robert P. Reuss Scholarship Fund for the students of Commerce.

Lauded as a pioneer in telecommunications, whose fifty years of experience took him through the industry's incredible, still-ongoing evolution, Robert P. Reuss graduated from the college in 1939 with a B.S. in commerce curriculum. A native of Aurora, he rose to executive posts at Illinois Bell and AT&T, then joined Chicago-based Centel Corporation in 1972 as president and chief executive officer, adding to these titles that of chairman, in 1977. He retired in 1988, going on to serve as a Hyneman Fellow in the University of Illinois Department of Political Science. A director of the University of Illinois Foundation, he also held an MBA from the Graduate School of Business of the University of Chicago, which honored him with its Distinguished Alumnus Award in 1985. A member on a number of corporate boards during his career, he was also a governor of the Midwest Stock Exchange (now the Chicago Stock Exchange) for twelve years, and was active in civic and educational organizations. On August 12, 1997, he lost a valiant, fourteen-year battle with prostate cancer. He died at his home in Naperville, at the age of 79. The following summer, Rob Reuss and his sister, Lynn Ann Bohmer, chose to honor their father's memory by establishing the scholarship, a merit- and need-based award, with preference given to students from the Aurora area.

Robert P. Reuss
"What better way to have a lasting memorial to Dad than to do something like this?" queried his son. "He was poor as a church mouse going to the University of Illinois. He wouldn't have been able to attend at all if not for the financial assistance he received. I remember him telling me stories about how he washed dishes with Lou Boudreau, the great baseball player — and that's how he helped pay for his education." Rob Reuss noted: "Our family views the scholarship gift as an everlasting and continuing symbol of his accomplishments and the mark he made on the world.

"I keep coming back to the fact that here was a very accomplished man in his chosen field of telecommunications. He received many awards and honors during his lifetime. He achieved what a lot of us are striving for," his son concluded. "And still, for him, the best years of his life were those he spent at the University of Illinois. The feeling of our family is that the scholarship will give its recipients the opportunity to develop that same kind of affinity for this great institution."


Brian Precious is happy to have enjoyed a well rounded undergraduate career at the University of Illinois. He's even happier that the value of such a career has been generously acknowledged. The recent Commerce grad — now working for PricewaterhouseCoopers in Chicago — was awarded the Robert P. Reuss Scholarship for the last semester of his senior year. "I found out at Christmas." Brian told InSight. "I was really grateful, for it really meant a lot."
An MIS major from Naperville, Brian paid for his education, with help from his parents, by setting aside money and working every summer. "A lot of recognition is grade-oriented," he went on to explain. "I felt that I got the Reuss scholarship for making a contribution to campus and not just for what was on my grade report." He received the scholarship based on a solid academic performance that netted him a 3.4 GPA (on the 4-point university scale). "I had seven pretty decent semesters — and one horrible one," he said, a bit ruefully. "The first semester of my sophomore year, when I transferred from LAS to Commerce, I took accounting, calculus, and statistics. All this knowledge-intensive stuff was coming at me. It taught me a good lesson." He continued: "I'm proud that once I got into MIS I got all A's. In information systems, I found something to get passionate about."
His record of community service is solid. A member of Alpha Phi Omega, a co-ed service fraternity, Brian served on the executive board his sophomore year. His various projects have included assisting local Cub Scouts with fundraising, coaching basketball at the Don Moyer Boys and Girls Club, and raising money to help fight muscular dystrophy and for the Crisis Nursery. Also a member of the Information Systems Association, he served the club as co-chair for publicity. And he was a member of the business fraternity Delta Sigma Pi.

He noted: "When you get out in the business world, people skills really count for a lot — the ability to talk, and to understand. I feel that's more important than what you got in a course. I've always looked up to people in the business world and I most admire those who communicate well with others." Brian has the ability to impress others, too. He was one of only ten students from the University of Illinois chosen for internships with Andersen Consulting last year.

On his application for the Reuss scholarship, Brian recalled his emotions when he first arrived as a student on the Illinois campus. "I realized that a new chapter in my life was beginning. From this day on, there would be new experiences, challenges, and opportunities in store for me. That night, I made a promise to myself. I promised to take full advantage of all the opportunities that I would have in college. I promised to meet new people, try new things, reach my full potential as a student and as a person, and to make a difference in the community. Now, as graduation approaches, I often ask myself if I have fulfilled this sacred promise. Without a doubt, the answer is yes!"

True Family Scholarships

An estate commitment has been made by John C. True (B.S. Accountancy '58), in appreciation of the education he received at the College of Commerce and Business Administration, and in recognition of his parents, John Henry True and Elizabeth Barratt Cullen True, who both graduated from the University of Illinois in 1926. Beginning with the fall 1999 semester, the scholarships are available to CBA freshmen, based on academic merit and financial need, with preference given to students entering the Department of Accountancy. Consideration may also be given to exceptional students in other departments of CBA who demonstrate critical financial need.

The Mildred and Albert Vondenbosch Scholarship

Being a devout Catholic, Albert Vondenbosch enjoys religious imagery. Being a Commerce grad and banker who has had, in his own words, "a wonderful life," he likes to share that imagery, and the joy his success has brought, with others. Last spring he wrote the outline for a speech, detailing periods of his life, for an address he gave at a recent family reunion. Headings include: "Render unto God what is God's and unto Caesar what is Caesar's" and "Build up your Treasures in Heaven." Another title, especially intriguing, is called "Angel Power."

Albert Vondenbosch with his late wife, Mildred.

At the splendid age of 94, Albert Vondenbosch is looking back on life and finding things good. A native of Altamont, Illinois, who belonged to Theta Kappa Phi and lettered in wrestling while at Illinois, Albert Vondenbosch graduated in 1927 with a B.S. in commerce curriculum. He then launched a career with Harris Trust, a career that he was able to maintain during the Depression and on through more than four decades. "There were four hundred banks in Chicago when the Depression hit, and there were sixty-eight left when it was over. Everyone lost their shirts," he recalls. "But Harris Trust was run so conservatively they kept growing." As a pension trust officer and, later, manager of the pension fund, he had a client list that included the State University Retirement System, and he watched the fund grow from $30,000 into the millions. He and his wife Mildred were married "at the bottom of the Depression," then saw their fortunes ascend. "My guardian angel guided me" he smiles, "and we accumulated a little bit." After he retired in the mid '60s, continued ties to alma mater found him as president of the Chicago chapter of the Illini Club when the group sponsored a centennial celebration in the Windy City on April 23, 1967. "The university's choral group and symphony orchestra came up by bus," he recalls. "There were 3,000 alumni and guests. We filled the Civic Opera House almost to the top tier."
Both he and Mildred became members of the University of Illinois Foundation. In June of 1998, the couple celebrated their 65th anniversary with a Mass at the Summit, the community in Asheville, North Carolina, to which they had retired. Many family members were present for the joyous occasion. Sadly, Mildred died on January 19 of this year, a day before her 93rd birthday. Now, a gift from her estate has established The Mildred and Albert Vondenbosch Scholarship Fund, for students in Commerce. "I'm so indebted to the university. I have so many good memories, of alumni and Foundation meetings," says Albert. "It was just natural."
As president of the Chicago Chapter Illini Club, Albert Vondenbosch (front row, center) helped organize the university's centennial celebration in the Windy City.