Leadership Giving Societies

Colgate’s leadership giving societies include the University’s most dedicated and visionary supporters.

Leading a Culture of Philanthropy at Colgate

The generosity of these leaders has made a significant impact on every aspect of the Colgate experience. It is with profound gratitude that the University recognizes their contributions with membership in the following leadership giving societies. 

To learn more about the impact and benefits of membership, a contact is provided for each group. Thank you for supporting Colgate students and helping the University to ascend.

Leadership Giving Societies

Created in 1995, the James B. Colgate Society recognizes the University’s most generous benefactors: those who have contributed $1 million or more during their lifetimes. Since 1891, when James B. Colgate made the first million-dollar gift to Colgate, 139 individuals and couples have followed in his footsteps and earned a place on the society’s rolls.

James B. Colgate Society members have shaped the future of this university and its students through their investments in capital projects, faculty chairs, financial aid, and other programs. 

For more information about the James B. Colgate Society, contact Thirza Morreale at tmorreale@colgate.edu or 315-228-6776.

The Willow Society recognizes hundreds of loyal alumni, parents, and friends who have made estate plans, life-income arrangements, and life insurance and IRA beneficiary designations for Colgate. These future gifts will provide the endowment backbone needed to enable Colgate to continue to change the lives of future generations of deserving students.

Anyone who notifies the University that their estate plans include Colgate will become a member of the Willow Society in recognition of their future impact.

If you have included Colgate in your plans, we encourage you to let the Planned Giving team know. This allows Colgate to thank you and ensure your gift is properly stewarded to accomplish your goals. You need not share any details beyond the fact that you have included a provision for Colgate. All information is kept confidential.

To share your plans or learn more about the Willow Society, contact the Office of Planned Giving at plannedgiving@colgate.edu or call 800-813-1819 to speak to a member of the Planned Giving team.

The Presidents’ Circle provides philanthropic leadership and support for the Colgate community by contributing more than 90 percent of funds raised by the University. To be eligible, members give at the leadership level associated with their class years, as listed below:


Presidents’ Circle Giving Levels

  • $1,000,000 James B. Colgate Society (Cumulative lifetime gifts)
  • $250,000 Founder
  • $100,000 Benefactor
  • $50,000 Patron
  • $25,000 Council
  • $15,000 Parents’ Steering Committee
  • $10,000 Fellow
  • $5,000 Partner
  • $2,500 Member (Classes of 1972 to 2013; parents; grandparents; master’s degree recipients; and friends)
  • $1,000 Member (Classes prior to 1972; Colgate faculty and staff)

Giving Levels for Recent Alumni

Classes of 2014–2023

  • $1,000 Class of 2014
  • $750 Classes of 2015 and 2016
  • $500 Classes of 2017 and 2018
  • $300 Classes of 2019 and 2020
  • $100 Classes of 2021, 2022, and 2023
  • $100 Recent alumni enrolled full time in a graduate program (To ensure you are credited at the graduate student level, please complete our online form.)
  • $13 Undergraduates

For more information about the Presidents’ Circle, visit the Presidents’ Circle page or contact Jen Stone, Associate Vice President Alumni Relations, Annual Giving and Leadership Giving, at jstone@colgate.edu or 315-228-6928.

On December 8, 1954, a group of dedicated parents formed the Parents' Steering Committee and began an important tradition of providing generous support to the University and enhancing every aspect of the Colgate experience. Members of the Committee have made a meaningful impact on students with their significant philanthropic support while their students are on campus and beyond.

With an annual gift to Colgate beginning at $15,000, parents and grandparents of current students are invited to join the Parents’ Steering Committee. Committee members are recognized for their total yearly giving and can choose to support any program that is meaningful to their families.

For more information about the Parents’ Steering Committee, contact Jen Stone, Associate Vice President Alumni Relations, Annual Giving and Leadership Giving, at jstone@colgate.edu or 315-228-6928.

Established in 2005, the Women's Leadership Council brings Colgate women together to improve the lives of current students and advance Colgate’s Third-Century Plan, through leadership and philanthropy.

Each member supports the University with a minimum commitment of $50,000 over a five-year period ($25,000 for young alumni of the 15 most recent years). Council members can direct their giving to any program or fund.

For more information about the Women's Leadership Council, contact Jen Stone, Associate Vice President Alumni Relations, Annual Giving and Leadership Giving, at jstone@colgate.edu or 315-228-6928.

The 1819 Circle recognizes the dedicated alumni who have made a gift to Colgate in each of the past three or more consecutive fiscal years. 

A gift of any size counts toward 1819 Circle membership. Gifts made before June 30, the last day of Colgate’s fiscal year, count for that year.

For more information about the 1819 Circle, contact Kristen Basher at kbasher@colgate.edu or 315-228-7412.

Members of Colgate Athletic Director's Circle go above and beyond in their generous support for our athletic programs by committing at least $13,000 per year to the Colgate Athletics Fund (CAF), which provides unrestricted support for all of the University’s athletic programs.

For more information, contact Kate Saeger '09 at ksaeger@colgate.edu.