Trustee Joe Puishys ’80 and Kathi (Jurewicz) Puishys ’81 have been long-standing leaders of the Bryant University alumni community, with their generosity and enthusiasm benefitting multiple generations of Bulldogs. Stepping into their new roles as Bryant Fund co-chairs is a natural extension of their advocacy and it will expand their reach as philanthropic leaders.
"We want every Bryant student to have that same chance we did regardless of their financial resources.”
“The education we received at Bryant gave us the tools we needed to be successful in our careers, but just as important are the relationships we built,” Kathi remarks. “We met each other because of Bryant! We also made lasting friendships in our sorority and fraternity and hosting alumni events in California and Minneapolis means we continue to make important connections. We want every Bryant student to have that same chance we did regardless of their financial resources.”
“Participation and giving back to Bryant in whatever amount you can, and whenever you can, is the most important part, and we greatly appreciate it.”
For Joe and Kathi, acting as Bryant Fund co-chairs allows them to build an even greater infrastructure to ensure future Bryant students have the same opportunities for personal and professional success that they did. They are especially passionate about raising funds for scholarships, and they have led all three annual Bryant Giving Days with leadership gifts.
“With Joe and Kathi Puishys as co-chairs, we will continue to build a culture of annual philanthropy,” says Nora Marzocchi, Director of the Bryant Fund. “More alumni, parents, faculty, staff, students, and friends of Bryant giving back annually and supporting the areas of campus that mean the most to them means that more students will receive the resources they need, and the Bryant student experience is expanded and enhanced for all students.”
Robin Warde, Executive Director of Alumni and Parent Engagement, explains how critical the co-chairs will be for inspiring other alumni to give back and why the Puishys are so well-suited to lead in this manner. “Joe and Kathi are generous in giving back to Bryant and they leverage their support to motivate others to give back as well. Anytime alumni speak up about the importance of supporting their alma mater, others are inspired. It’s so powerful to have alumni voices encourage annual giving.”
The Puishys have ambitious goals for their first term as Bryant Fund co-chairs, goals that will enrich every facet of campus life. Chief among them is establishing a diverse, multi-generational Bryant Leadership Council Executive Committee to make annual giving part of the culture for alumni of all ages. “Participation and giving back to Bryant in whatever amount you can, and whenever you can, is the most important part, and we greatly appreciate it” says Joe.
Joe and Kathi also hope to harness the power of already-successful events like Bryant Giving Day in October, Reunion in the spring, and Homecoming in the fall. “We want alumni to take ownership of these events. We want them to feel connected to the campus in deeper, more exciting ways, and we want them to make philanthropy and giving back a habit,” says Joe.
Joe and Kathi Puishys have built a reputation for paying their success forward. They set the example of generosity and have made a lifelong commitment to Bryant. “In every way, Joe and Kathi are setting the pace,” says Warde. “It’s their goal to engage as many alumni and families as they can to ensure that future generations of Bryant students are prepared for success over their lifetimes.”
And the Puishys are sending a powerful, generous message to begin their tenure as Bryant Fund co-chairs. Beginning in March, the Puishys will match all gifts made to any of the Bryant Funds including Where it Is Most Needed; Annual Scholarships; First-Year Scholarships; Women Leaders Scholarship; Student Life and Career Services; Academic and Teaching Excellence; and Graduate Support; dollar for dollar, with a total commitment of $250,000.