$140 Million Gift to 3 Private Universities in N.C.

October 3, 2017

Wake Forest University, Queens University of Charlotte and Wingate University will collectively receive more than $140 million under a wealthy donor’s bequest.

The three private universities in North Carolina will use the money for scholarships. About half of the gift, more than $70 million, will go to Wake Forest, the universities announced Monday. The remaining portion will be equally divided between Queens and Wingate, meaning each will receive over $35 million. The gifts are the largest made by an individual to each of the three universities.

Charlotte businessman and attorney Porter Byrum left the money to the universities. Byrum, who graduated from the Wake Forest University School of Law in 1942, served on the university's law Board of Visitors and served on the Board of Trustees at Wingate. He died in March at age 96.

His giving to the three universities now totals more than $235 million and includes a Charlotte shopping center. Several buildings on the universities' campuses bear his name, and Wingate’s school of business is also named after Byrum. (This paragraph has been updated to note that Byrum's giving to the universities, including his bequest, totals more than $235 million.)

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