March 25, 2014

Gifts received toward new MSSU baseball stadium

Joplin, Mo. -- Two major gifts were recently received by the Missouri Southern Foundation for the baseball stadium that is planned at the university.

Rod and Janice Anderson made a $25,000 gift toward the fundraising campaign, and a suite at the stadium will be named in honor of the Board of Governors thanks to the gift. Rod is an alumnus and current member of the Missouri Southern State University Board of Governors.

"I've always been passionate about the student-athletes at Missouri Southern, and we thought this was a great opportunity to help them and to bring a new facility to campus," said Anderson.

Anderson, of Monett, was appointed to the Board of Governors in September of 2003. He served as Vice Chair from 2009-10 and two terms as Chair, from 2009-11. He is a longtime supporter of Missouri Southern and a member of the Lionbacker Booster Club.

Don and Christy Swanson, of Joplin, made a $10,000 gift and will have home stands named in their honor. Don also is an alumnus and has been a member of the Missouri Southern Foundation Board of Directors since 2011.

"We routinely support the University in a variety of areas," said Swanson. "We decided to direct our support toward this campaign right now because we feel sports provide important life lessons and we're excited about the new facility."

The fundraising campaign is a collaboration between the university, the MSSU Baseball Advisory Committee and the Missouri Southern Foundation.

The stadium will be located east of Fred G. Hughes Stadium and adjacent to the MSSU Softball Complex, both of which are located at the Robert W. Plaster Sports Complex. The $2.5 million facility will feature state-of-the-art synthetic turf, regulation lighting, seating for 500, a viewing deck and other amenities.

"We're thankful for these generous gifts," said JoAnn Graffam, executive director of the Foundation. "They are going to make the new stadium a reality for the campus and the community and we couldn't do it without them."