UNI's McLeod Center Wall of Champions to recognize donors

September 26, 2004

William Calhoun, vice president for university advancement, (319) 273-6078
Melissa Barber, University Marketing & Public Relations, (319) 273-2761

CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- A grassroots fundraising effort is under way for the University of Northern Iowa's McLeod Center. Donors of $1,000 or more will be recognized on nameplates as part of a 'Wall of Champions' created in recognition of those who have supported construction of the facility.

'This grassroots effort gives everyone in the Cedar Valley community, our alumni and friends the opportunity to be a part of the Panthers' success,' said UNI director of athletics Rick Hartzell. 'Cedar Valley residents have been our strongest supporters and the Wall of Champions will honor that generosity. We felt that 'Wall of Champions' was a perfect description for this naming opportunity. It reflects the spirit of our donors and our Panther athletic teams alike.'

The McLeod Center fundraising efforts reached the $18 million goal in December 2003. Fundraising continues for features to ensure the arena is a premier facility for the university and community. These include a kitchen/catering area, light/sound grid, finished Panther hospitality suite and hall of fame connector. Groundbreaking is planned for Oct. 9.

The McLeod Center will be home to Panther men's and women's basketball and volleyball, and the performance site for Panther wrestling. It also will be a versatile venue for community and regional events, including concerts, exhibitions, school events and sports camps and competitions.

Construction of the center is part of the $100 million 'Students First' campaign to support scholarships, academic programs and facilities. The campaign continues through June 2005.

To join the Wall of Champions or for more information, contact the UNI Foundation at (319) 273-6078 or 1-800-782-9522. For information on the 'Students First' campaign and the McLeod Center, visit www.uni-foundation.org.

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