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CMU match creates $1.5 million scholarship fund honoring the legacy of Congressman Wayne Aspinall

In a foundation merger signed from the desk of the late Congressman Wayne Aspinall, CMU Trustee Board Chair Tim Fry and President John Marshall announced that the Aspinall Foundation will join the Colorado Mesa University (CMU) Foundation, doubling the endowment for scholarships aimed at students in the Department of Social and Behavioral Sciences.

The announcement, made on Aspinall’s birthday at an event in the Tomlinson Library where Aspinall's legacy is on display, signified a monumental step in supporting the next generation of civic leaders in western Colorado.

For years, the Aspinall Foundation has been instrumental in providing scholarships to CMU students, fostering a legacy of leadership and commitment to public policy that benefits communities and the nation. The new endowment balance of $1.5 million not only amplifies the financial support for students, but also promises to expand programs and opportunities that encourage civic engagement and honor Aspinall’s impact on western policy and land management.

"This is one of the things I love about this community, its individuals and institutions working together to make things happen," said Fry.

Marshall, along with members of the Aspinall and CMU Foundations’ board, highlighted the combined funds as a testament to trust, shared visions and shared values. Speakers emphasized the importance of investing in future leaders who are poised to navigate and shape the future of the west for the benefit of western Colorado and beyond.

“Few individuals in the history of western Colorado have made more of an impact than former Congressman Wayne Aspinall,” said Marshall. “Beyond the obvious benefits of growing the size of the scholarship endowment, the work our organizations have done together in developing this partnership will provide a multitude of new opportunities to engage our community in ways that honor Wayne Aspinall’s legacy and challenge us all to engage civilly with one another.”

In addition to the announcement, the Aspinall Foundation Board announced the 2024 scholarship recipients:  Wayne N. Aspinall Scholarship recipient Brooke Erickson, Charles Traylor Scholarship recipient Liban Shongolo, Aspinall Scholarship recipients Vicki Tromburg, Melissa Kindt and Nicholas Williams. 


Written by David Ludlam