DSU Establishes New Heritage Foundation

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When something goes wrong, it might be best just to start all over again.

The dissolution of the Dickinson State Foundation, which was plagued by financial mismanagement, prompted the school to begin from scratch.

The new DSU Heritage Foundation was established this month with a new board.

DSU senior Trevor Conrad has received scholarships from the foundation in the past.

"I've been able to receive scholarships from several alums," Conrad said.

Though today, the foundation's ability to give is uncertain. Both students and DSU officials are hopeful the school's new foundation will help.

"I know that the students are looking for more positive connection between the university and the foundation," Conrad said.

Since last year, the foundation has been in the spotlight for its financial health, and it was decided it had debt that couldn't be paid. With the creation of the Heritage Foundation, the university knew changes had to be made.

"The executive director of the foundation will be appointed by the president of the university and will report to the president of the university," said Jim Ozbun, DSU interim president.

Ozbun says the foundation will also have a nominating committee for bringing new members to its board. Even with the progress of the Heritage Foundation, there's still some items that Ozbun says cannot be determined until the court handles the old foundation.

"We're hoping that a lot of those resources that have been committed and endowed in the old foundation will move over," Ozbun said.

The Heritage Foundation has an entirely new board of 18 members. They come from all walks of life, but many have deep roots in DSU.

"All of my children graduated from Dickinson State University, as did my wife and myself and all of our siblings. We have a very strong family history," said Thomas Arnold, president of the DSU Heritage Foundation.

Besides members having a variety of vocations, board members are also from across the country. Arnold says the diversity is for a reason.

"It is important to make sure they are represented, and so therefore, we will have a diverse group from a number of different places," Arnold said.

The new board has modified and accepted new bylaws for the Heritage Foundation.

The hearing for the dissolution of the old foundation is Dec. 7.