The Georgia Health Sciences Foundation (GSHF) and Augusta University Foundation (AUF) have agreed to merge the two entities effective July 1 in an effort to provide better services to students.
GHSF and AUF both support Augusta University (AU), receiving and managing donations to the school. GSHF supports the College of Allied Health Sciences, College of Dental Medicine, and College of Nursing while AUF is responsible for investing donated funds.
“This is a no-brainer! Both foundations are here to serve Augusta University. We are doing the same things for different parts of the university, and it makes sense to bring our groups together,” AUF board chair Dennis Sodomka explained.
Meanwhile, incoming co-chair of the merged foundation, Al Harris, believes that the merger will strengthen the two institutions as one entity in the best interest of AU.
“I truly believe that since [AU President Brooks Keel] came along and helped unify us as one university, it is the right thing for us to unify the foundations as well,” Harris said.
‘Big Step’ for Augusta
AU Interim Vice President of Foundations Stephen Lamb said administrators have long wanted to merge the two foundations. He pointed out that the unified foundation will save time and money by combining duplicated efforts such as audits, reports, and other administrative costs.
“Combining a large, diverse group of trustees from the AU and GHS foundations will bring a wealth of insight and experience to one table for the benefit of the university as a whole,” he stated.
Sadomka sees the recent development as part of the university’s move to become a “world-class” higher education institution. “We are on the cutting edge of so many things here, and this was even before cyber. President Keel has done a tremendous job in moving the university forward,” he remarked.