Ripon College Receives $3.1 Million Estate for Faculty Professorship and More

Ripon College announced that it received a $3,187,515 from the estate of Patricia Parker Francis, a longtime friend and supporter of the College.

“The Francis family loved Ripon College and Green Lake and cared deeply about our campus community throughout their lives,” said Ripon College President Zach Messitte. “The gift will benefit our faculty, staff, students and community for generations to come and is a lasting legacy of their commitment to Ripon College.”

The estate will fully endow the Patricia Parker Francis Distinguished Professorship in Economics that is currently held by Dr. Paul Schoofs. It also will add to the William B. Murphy Endowed Guest Lectureship in Economics.

Longtime supporters of Ripon College’s athletic program, the Francis estate also will help renovate and expand the athletics, health and wellness facilities on campus. Ripon College previously named its baseball diamond Francis Field in her honor in 1995.

Formerly of Milwaukee, Ms. Parker Francis spent summers in Green Lake, Wisconsin. She was a Ripon College trustee from 1988-2001 and received an honorary doctorate degree from Ripon in 2002.A video of her and her husband receiving an honorary degree from Ripon College in 2002 can be viewed here.

Ms. Parker Francis, who passed away in 2013, was a member of the family that founded the Parker Pen Company in Janesville, Wisconsin.

Ms. Parker Francis’s late husband, Robert E. Francis, was director of public relations at Ripon College from 1956-57 and later a vice president of development at Millikin University in Decatur, Illinois. Ms. Parker Francis’s first husband, William B. Murphy, was a Ripon College trustee from 1982-1985.


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