Inaugural gift helps launch Campbell Foundation

June 22, 2006 | Leave a Comment

Bob and Pat Barker, of Fuquay-Varina, N.C., have made a major gift to the Campbell University Foundation. Barker is CEO and chairman of the board of directors of the Bob Barker Company, the industry's largest supplier to corrections facilities.

The Campbell University Foundation is dedicated to raising and managing private support for the university. It will serve Campbell in terms of providing more financial flexibility for activities such as short-term investments and accepting and selling property more expeditiously than the university. Barker was elected to the foundation's board of directors. He and his wife Pat have made generous gifts to several capital campaigns, including the John W. Pope Jr. Convocation Center, the restoration of the D. Rich Memorial Building project and the creation of the Campus Master Plan.

"It is a pleasure to be involved with the foundation," said Barker. "It is an initiative that will enhance the fundraising capabilities of the university, as well as ensure long-term growth."

A self-made entrepreneur, Barker began operating his company out of the back of a barbershop in 1972, the Bob Barker Company grew to international status with facilities in North Carolina, Idaho and Florida and metal manufacturing plants and distribution centers in Fuquay-Varina and California. In 2005, the company opened a new 30,000 square-foot corporate headquarters in Fuquay-Varina.

Barker, a Campbell alumnus, is active in state and civic affairs. He served as a North Carolina state senator from 1972-1974 and as mayor of the towns of Fuquay-Varina and Apex. He currently serves as a Fuquay-Varina town commissioner.

To date, the Campbell Foundation has received three major gifts, each going toward the construction of the John W. Pope Jr. Convocation Center, a multi-million dollar athletic and cultural complex scheduled to be completed in 2008.

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