San Jose State receives $1 million gift from Stan and Marilyn Gadway

August 19, 2019

NCAA, San Jose State Spartans

Photo credit: sjsuspartans.com

By Ana Kieu

SAN JOSE, Calif. — San Jose State University is pleased to announce that it has received a $1 million gift through a charitable trust to support the Spartan Athletics Center, which will be the new home of Spartan football and women’s and men’s soccer. Stan Gadway, ’64 Civil Engineering, and his wife Marilyn Gadway, ’60 Recreation, also plan to create an endowment to support the Scott Gadway Academic Center, which they established in 2003.

“Marilyn and Stan Gadway have a history of supporting San Jose State that spans more than 60 years,” said SJSU Director of Intercollegiate Athletics Marie Tuite. “They are keenly committed to the academic mission of SJSU. Nothing thrills them more than to see an athlete or any student graduate from their beloved alma mater. ‘Thank you’ hardly seems enough to express my gratitude for this gracious gift. Their first date was an SJSU football game, where they sat on the east side of CEFCU Stadium (formerly Spartan Stadium) and cheered loudly for the Spartans. They’ve been cheering ever since.”

These gifts will benefit student-athletes on the football, and men’s and women’s soccer teams. The Spartan Athletics Center will provide new locker rooms, an auditorium, coaches’ offices, position-specific classrooms, stadium game day suites, and a state-of-the-art athletic training room that will be accessible to all student-athletes.

“The Gadways have been incredibly committed to SJSU Athletics over the years,” said SJSU Football Head Coach Brent Brennan. “Their investment years ago in the Gadway Academic Center has been a terrific resource for all of our student-athletes. This new commitment will have an incredible impact on our football program, Spartan soccer and the entire athletics department. We are grateful for their continued support.”

The Gadway Legacy
Stan and Marilyn Gadway’s first date was a San Jose State football game against the University of Hawaii in 1958. Originally from Nebraska, Stan came to San Jose State on the G.I. Bill after four years of military service. Marilyn’s own path to college was supported in part by a $100 scholarship given by a businesswomen’s club in Barstow, Calif., where she graduated high school. She never forgot the gesture, which validated her desire to pursue an education. Together, the Gadways raised two sons, Dean, ’89 English, Multi-Subject Teaching Credential, and Scott, ’92 Aviation, while Stan ran Gadway Construction, Inc. and Marilyn managed their investment properties.

Longtime supporters of Spartan football, the Gadways established a charitable remainder trust with the goal of supporting SJSU Athletics with the remainder proceeds. When Scott died in a 1996 skydiving accident, Marilyn and Stan recognized his memory by creating the Scott Gadway Academic Center to support the academic achievements of student-athletes.

“We funded the academic center because our main interest is not wins or losses in sports, but in educating kids,” said Stan. “Over the years we have been thanked by hundreds of coaches and student-athletes for the academic support provided by the center. We see the Spartan Athletics Center as an expansion of that vision. By investing in athletics we can help bring in needed funds for scholarships. The education we received at San Jose State changed our lives tremendously, to the point where we are now able to pay back to the college what it did for us. The students’ diplomas are what will make their lives successful.”

It’s important to the Gadways that Scott’s memory live on in the Academic Center, which is why they are establishing an endowment. They also serve as ambassadors to the women’s gymnastics team, rooting for them at home and away meets. For the Gadways, athletics is a gateway to an education.

“We have seen a lot of young kids come through SJSU Athletics,” said Marilyn. “The most important thing they can get is that college degree. Athletics is a good avenue for many to get an education.”

“This gift from Stan and Marilyn Gadway is a magnificent example of private support of San José that makes an enormous difference in the University and our athletics program,” said Interim Vice President of University Advancement and CEO of the Tower Foundation Peter Smits. “The Spartan Athletics Center is an important part of the future success of Spartan Athletics, and we are grateful for the Gadways’ generosity and thoughtfulness.”

To track fundraising progress and learn how you can support Spartan Athletics, please contact Josh Thiel, Deputy Athletics Director for Athletics Advancement, at 408-924-1697 or joshua.thiel@sjsu.edu.

About San Jose State University
The founding campus of the 23-campus California State University system, San Jose State provides a comprehensive university education, granting bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees in 250 areas of study offered through its nine colleges.

With more than 35,000 students and nearly 4,370 employees, San Jose State continues to be an essential partner in the economic, cultural and social development of Silicon Valley and the state, annually contributing 10,000 graduates to the workforce.

The university is proud of the accomplishments of its more than 270,000 alumni, 60 percent of whom live and work in the Bay Area.

About San Jose State Athletics
San Jose State sponsors 22 NCAA Division I intercollegiate sports programs for 500+ student-athletes annually. Spartan football is a member of Division I’s FBS, the NCAA’s highest level of competition.

The Spartans’ primary conference affiliation is with the Mountain West. Selected teams belong to the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation, the Western Athletic Conference and the Golden Coast Conference.

San Jose State has 10 NCAA team championships and 52 NCAA individual titles. Sixty-two Spartans competed in one or more Olympic Games. San Jose State athletes have won seven gold, six silver and seven bronze medals at the Olympics.

Annually, about one-third of the student-athlete population earns either an institutional, conference or national recognition based on outstanding academic performance.

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