Stories Past

An Act of Generosity: Honoring the Memory of Theatre Professor Douglas Getzoff

When UCO Theatre Professor Douglas Getzoff passed away on October 6, 2006, he left 14 years of memories with the many students he mentored and the fellow Bronchos he worked with. They felt the best way to honor the impact he had on their lives was to establish an endowed scholarship fund in his name.

"Doug was a mentor to me," said Danyel Siler, a member of UCO's class of 2005. "Doug gave so much of himself to us - his students, the department. He inspired in us the confidence to succeed."

Siler was determined to succeed in raising the funds needed to endow the scholarship, and soon embarked on a letter writing campaign soliciting support for the scholarship. She enlisted other former students to help her stuff nearly 900 envelopes with the letter and send it to Theatre, Dance and Music alumni and other supporters asking for their help.

"Having a scholarship in his name honors his legacy, and as his protégés, it's our duty to ensure his legacy continues," added Siler.

"This is our next ‘show' to work on - a show that the curtain will never fall on."

Melody Hansen, the Annual Fund coordinator for the UCO College of Fine Arts & Design, said that thanks to Siler and her the other alumni who helped, close to $7,000 has been raised for the Douglas R. Getzoff Technical Design Endowed Scholarship. That's just three thousand dollars short of the amount needed to fully endow the scholarship.

"We're very close on this one," Hansen added. "We've all given what we can to preserve Doug's memory, but we're not quite there yet."

To further preserve that memory, the College, in collaboration with the City of Edmond and Edmond's Visual Arts Commission, purchased a memorial bench with a Shakespearean bronze statue designed by world-renowned sculptor Gary Lee Price. The bench was installed in front of UCO's Mitchell Hall Theater and dedicated in April 2007. The piece is a lasting tribute to his service to UCO and Oklahoma Shakespeare in the Park, as well.

To contribute to the Douglas R. Getzoff Memorial Technical Design Endowed Scholarship, contact Lori Alspaugh, development director, in the College of Fine Arts & Design Development Office at 405.974.3783 or make your gift online by clicking here, and enter the name of the scholarship fund in the "Other" box under the About Your Gift section.

(Photo:  Several of Doug Getzoff's former students and fellow faculty posed with the new statue and bench after the dedication in April 2007 right before the evening's production of Shakespeare's Much Ado About Nothing.)

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