Designing a Great Partnership

Pantone Color guideX-Rite Pantone has been a longtime corporate partner of the graphic communications department within Clemson’s Sonoco Institute of Packaging Design and Graphics, but a recent in-kind donation valued at $500,000 has taken that partnership to a higher level. Clemson students will now have access to state-of-the-art spectrophotometers, scanning tables, light booths and software. Hands-on experience with this sophisticated technology will allow students to learn using the latest equipment in color measurement, ink formulation, and print-quality hardware and software.

“We are very grateful to X-Rite for working with us to provide students with the latest capabilities in color management and color measurement solutions,” said Bobby Congdon, assistant director of the Sonoco Institute. “These gifts will enable us to enhance our ink lab capabilities to become a fully functional, professional ink lab.”

Clemson has a history of building strong relationships with corporations across the country. These partnerships help the University financially but also connect our students to valuable real-world experiences. Partnerships with corporations such as X-Rite provide that vital link, helping integrate students’ classroom experience with career preparation.

Empowering First-Generation Clemson Students

John ’72 and Laurie Gutshaw believe in the power of education. Long before they met, John and Laurie both relished the educational opportunities afforded to them, eventually using that education to build substantive careers and lives. The couple, of Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida, is putting their collective power behind Clemson University through the establishment of the Kenneth John Gutshaw Jr., ’72 and Laurie B. Gutshaw Annual FIRST Grant-In-Aid Endowment — providing support for first-generation college students at Clemson.

John Gutshaw is a West Virginia native who spent his formative years in Long Island. “When it was time for me to look at colleges, I was interested in going to a Southern school because I frankly didn’t like cold weather,” recalled John. “When I visited Clemson, I fell in love with the campus, the area and its beauty.”

John received his bachelor’s degree in economics and his master’s in city and regional planning. After graduation, his career took him back to New York, where he teamed with Jim Wadley, who had recently founded a firm specializing in analyzing and accessing site selections for companies. Their company grew and eventually merged with a real estate corporation. Today, the firm of Wadley Donovan Gutshaw Consulting is an international consulting firm.

Meanwhile, Laurie Buchanan was pursuing a successful career as a journalist. Her path took her into the inner-world of Washington politics where she held communications positions for notable members of Congress. She also worked for the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission, the New Jersey Department of Transportation, New Jersey Transit and a global engineering consulting firm, AECOM Technology, from which she retired in 2017.

John and Laurie now enjoy a busy semi-retirement life in Florida. Their skills are still in high demand, but they carefully select what causes and organizations to allocate their energy toward and are always exploring ways to support what they are passionate about, like Clemson’s FIRST program.

The Gutshaws recently had an opportunity to meet the first group of Clemson students to benefit from their generosity and look forward to seeing what path those students take.

“Laurie and I believe one of the best gifts you can give to any young person is a college education,” said John. “College prepares you for a future career, helps you understand learning experiences and establishes enduring friendships. In the absence of having children, we decided this endowment was the best avenue — providing others with this gift — and opening the door for a first-generation college graduate makes this even more special to us.”

David Lyle Knows Their Stories

David LyleThere are 493 names etched on the stones that make up Clemson University’s Scroll of Honor — a memorial to the University’s alumni who died while fighting for their country. Through his volunteer work with the Clemson Corps, David Lyle ’68 knows the stories of all 493 soldiers.

Lyle, who participated in Air Force ROTC during his years at Clemson, has researched and verified each honoree as a former Clemson University student and hero who died in service to our country. He has spent hundreds of hours of his own time on ancestry websites, filing through paper records and driving to cemeteries to complete the work.

“I’m all in,” Lyle said. “This is where my love is.”

A native of Walhalla, South Carolina, Lyle never considered attending college anywhere other than Clemson. He enrolled in 1963, when it was still required for students to join the University’s ROTC program. He spent the next seven years — in undergraduate and graduate classes — at Clemson.

A microbiology major as an undergraduate, Lyle had not intended on spending a career in the military. But life doesn’t always end up the way we plan. In 1968, he graduated with his bachelor’s degree, and in 1970, he went into the U.S. Air Force, swapping a lab coat for a uniform.

In the Air Force, Lyle was deployed to bases from Montana to South Korea. The military, and eventually a civilian career in medical technology and research, took him all over the country.

Lyle retired in 2009 and wanted to come back home. He and his wife, Judy, had stayed connected to Clemson and were involved with an alumni group in Washington, D.C. Since moving back to Walhalla, they have also given back to Clemson. In addition to his time serving the Clemson Corps, Lyle recently decided to support the Class of 1968 ROTC Endowment through an estate gift that will provide scholarships to Clemson Corps cadets.

When asked about this decision, Lyle’s answer was simple: “Clemson is family.” He added, “Giving back through your estate is a no-brainer.”

By giving toward the Class of 1968 Endowment, Lyle is among the Clemson supporters who are ensuring that Clemson men and women will receive a world-class education while also preparing to serve their nation — both of which have significantly shaped Lyle’s life and career.

“I had no idea when I started at Clemson University where I was going to end up,” he said. “Through the years, Clemson University has changed. The Clemson Corps has become bigger than anyone ever imagined. But in many ways, this University has stayed the same. It is still a family.”

Garrison Cornerstone Gifts Make a Lasting Impact Across Campus

Garrisons at Charleston announcementBy the time Dan Garrison retired as vice president of sales for Service Corporation International, his career had taken him far from his Upstate roots. He graduated from Clemson in 1972 — with a degree in business and an ambition that led him to work and live all over the country.

But his heart never left these hills.

Garrison and his wife, Nancy, return often to visit family and enjoy Clemson athletic events. The Garrisons’ connection to Clemson was further solidified this year when they became the University’s first-ever Cornerstone Partners for both athletics and academics.

Dan spent his formative years on his family’s dairy farm in Greenville County. Choosing to attend Clemson was an easy decision, he said. Many family members and friends were “Clemson people,” so there was always a strong Clemson influence. Even when career moves took Dan away from South Carolina, the distance never lessened the bond with his Clemson Family.

When the Garrisons decided to give back to the University, they wanted to do so in a manner that would have a lasting impact. In 2017, they became Athletic Cornerstone Partners to support the University’s efforts to improve the experience of student-athletes — not only while they are participating in their sport on campus but also after graduation, to give them tools that ensure their personal and professional success. The Garrisons’ recent Cornerstone gift to the College of Business will support its sales innovation program. The J. Daniel and Nancy Garrison Sales Lab will be named in their honor.

Dan’s fond memories of Clemson remain vivd: “Since my first semester as a young freshman in 1969, Clemson has been part of my life. The education I received at Clemson goes beyond academics. My business success is in large part due to my experiences here and the real-world education I received regarding how to become an adult. Clemson is an important part of our family, and we feel privileged to be part of the larger Clemson Family.”

For the Garrisons, the most rewarding aspect of their Cornerstone gifts to Clemson is feeling a personal connection to the people and programs they are supporting. “For anyone who is considering a gift to Clemson,” Dan said, “no matter how large or small, the benefit of having a long-term impact for so many is worthy of serious consideration.”