Gene Bissell ′76, Linda Jackson ’82, Jon Stryker ’82, and Mike & Sarah (Lindsay) Bombich ′98 challenged all alumni from the Classes of 1974-2014 to make a gift on Friday, May 22, 205, the Day of Gracious Living. At the start of the day, any Kalamazoo College Fund gift made on the Day of Gracious Living was be matched dollar-for-dollar until $41,000 was reached. We were so impressed by the generosity shown in response to the Day of Gracious Living Challenge, other matching funds were volunteered over the course of the day.
Gene Bissell ′76 has served on Kalamazoo College’s Board of Trustees for 11 years. He has an MBA in strategic planning from the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania.
Gene has over 12 years of public company board experience, plus leadership positions on several nonprofit boards. He is retired CEO and president of a publicly traded energy distribution company.
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Linda Jackson ′82 was the first person in her family to attend college. She conducted her SIP research in Washington D.C., where she later graduated from the Catholic University School of Law. When Linda and her family moved to Saudi Arabia, she became an elementary school teacher because women could not practice law there. She also taught at an international school in London, England.
Kalamazoo College gave Linda the education she needed to switch careers multiple times and help others improve their lives through education. Because gifts from donors helped make Linda′s K experience possible, she desires to keep educational experiences at K alive for a new generation.
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Jon Stryker ′82 is president and founder of the Arcus Foundation, which is a private grant-making institution dedicated to the idea that people can live in harmony with one another and the natural world. Most recently, the Foundation provided a grant to endow the work of the College′s Arcus Center for Social Justice Leadership (ACSJL).
An architect by training, Jon′s philanthropy has helped strengthen many of K′s distinctive programs. His vision and generosity are behind the newest addition to campus, the building that houses the ACSJL. Jon serves as a member of the College′s Board of Trustees and is Honorary Co-Chair of The Campaign for Kalamazoo College.
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Mike Bombich ′98, a Kalamazoo native, attended K under the Heyl Scholarship program, earning a degree in biology. He graduated with an MS in biology from Bowling Green State University. While finding aquatic ecology research immensely enjoyable, Mike received more gratification from creating data analysis tools and taught himself software development. In 2002, he released Carbon Copy Cloner, the first cloning and backup application for Apple’s Mac OS X operating system. Mike continued to develop software in his spare time while working as a systems engineer for Apple. Eventually, he left Apple to pursue software development full time.
Sarah (Lindsay) Bombich ′98 grew up in Connecticut. At K, she earned a major in psychology and a minor in computer science. She graduated with a MEd in career and technology education from Bowling Green State University. At Washington University in St. Louis, Sarah created and managed the library technology center, developing innovative ways to manage a large student staff and teaching campus-wide workshops. In 2012, Sarah left her job to join Mike at Bombich Software. The company has grown to seven employees and has seen two very successful product launches.
Kalamazoo College provided Mike and Sarah with an incredible foundation upon which they have built their professional lives. K nurtured their natural love of learning and taught them to be lifelong learners, providing a broad liberal arts background that encouraged them to try new things. Without scholarships, they would not have been able to attend K. The Bombichs are pleased to have a chance to give back and help current students.
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