The University of Oregon softball team enjoyed tremendous success on the field this season. And now, the Ducks will enjoy a brand new softball facility in the not-too-distant future.
During Saturday evening’s Women in Flight dinner, Athletics Director Rob Mullens announced a $10 million gift from Robert Sanders to Oregon softball that will lead this drive to constructing a new softball stadium.
“I’m thrilled to announce a leading gift to Oregon softball that will pave the way to a new era for our highly successful program,” said Mullens. “Thanks to Mr. Sanders’ generosity, we will be able to ride the momentum of this amazing season and create a new home for Ducks softball.”
The facility will be named in honor of Sanders’ wife, O. Jane Sanders, who passed away in late 2013. The two met at the University of Oregon, while Robert was a fullback on the football team and Jane was a cheerleader.
1949 and 1950 graduates of the University respectively, Robert and Jane Sanders enjoyed great success in the lumber industry, having held businesses in California, Oregon and Washington.
“We cannot thank Robert enough for his generosity,” said President Michael Gottfredson. “The university is grateful and proud to help honor the legacy of Jane Sanders. Our softball team is a tremendous point of pride for this university and this gift will only serve to bolster it.”
With the gift, work will now begin in earnest to find a site for the new stadium, with an anticipated groundbreaking and opening still yet to be determined.
“This gift is a major step forward in this project,” said Mullens. “We are as eager as our fans, student-athletes, coaches and donors to turn this dream into a reality.”