The grand prize supports Carolina Volleyball’s FORevHER 50 Years campaign

A $ 1 million gift from an old Carolina Volleyball star will add to a historic fundraising campaign to celebrate 50 years of Carolina Women’s Athletics.

Donna Lee Gutterman ’79, ’98 (MBA), of Raleigh, North Carolina, pledged a donation to the Carolina Volleyball Operating Endowment Fund in honor of Dr. Beth Miller, Carolina Volleyball, Coach Sagula, teammates and alumnae of Gutterman.

“The years I played volleyball at UNC were the most important part of my life, and I am honored to be in a position to help perpetuate it for future generations,” said Gutterman, who is the first volleyball player in Carolina. “My parents taught me the importance of helping great teachers.”

The Gutterman donation is part of the FORevHER Tar Heels initiative led by The Rams Club and Carolina Athletics to compete with Carolina Athletics women past, present and future by sponsoring in lessons, supplies and mentoring and leadership development opportunities for future generations of student learners. .

The FORevHER 50 Years campaign is part of the 50 Years of Carolina Women’s Athletics campaign to showcase the leaders, legends and leaders who have fueled Carolina’s rich history of the industry in women’s athletics since its inception. and Title IX. The campaign will help raise funds for continued excellence in the women’s 15 varsity programs – on the playground, in the classroom and through life lessons.

June 23, 2022, will mark the 50th anniversary of Congress passing Title IX of the Education Amendments banning gender discrimination in any educational program, including sports. Five years later, the FORevHER 50 Years campaign marks the future of Carolina Women’s Athletics through philanthropy FOR HER.

The announcement demonstrates Carolina’s belief in the power of sport to empower women, empower communities and connect people.

“Donna’s generous gift is a testament to the impact of women’s sports in Carolina,” said Bubba Cunningham, Carolina’s director of sports. “Carolina established seven women’s education programs in 1971-72, prior to the end of Title IX, and continues to build on its legacy of providing opportunities for graduates, the and leaders to grow and develop. We are grateful for Donna’s realization of the power of sports for young women and for the opportunity to honor a pioneer like Beth Miller and our volleyball program.

Gutterman is honoring Dr. Beth Miller, who retired in 2015 as a senior team athletics leader and senior executive director after her 40 -year career with Carolina Athletics. Miller was the women’s volleyball coach in Gutterman’s freshman year. In Gutterman’s second year, Miller became head coach. Miller continued to work extensively at UNC-Chapel Hill, serving as a softball coach and executive director.

“[Miller] which gives us a sense of style and leads us to establish our personal style, “Gutterman said. to understand not only the rules of the game, but also what we choose to do. life, and he taught us how to work together. These are the greatest lessons of my life. “

Gutterman also thanked Miller for bringing in a group of immigrants from all over the country and establishing them as a group. Those partners formed friends for life with Gutterman, now retired from a 40-year job as a medical officer. “I am so grateful to count Mary Alice (Abdalla) Steinhardt and Jane (Foley) Bell as close friends, despite the miles and years that have separated us,” Gutterman said. “When we get together, it’s easy to change new partners.”

“I’m really impressed with Donna’s kindness,” Miller said. “I am so grateful for her choice to support our beloved volleyball program, and all of the female students in Carolina. Donna is an amazing person and a dear friend of mine. She is a great example of the strong women we want our student athletes to want to be. “

Gutterman has been a favorite of Carolina Volleyball ever since he graduated. He has the highest praise for Director Joe Sagula. “It’s not about the athlete,” Gutterman said. “I know Coach Sagula and his staff and what they are doing to support women’s volleyball, and I see that kind of great teaching of young women on how to be good parents. . I can’t help but want to continue that.

Gutterman said he has full confidence in Sagula and his staff and wants to give them the freedom to decide how to separate the money from his gift, which is why there is no limit to the amount. make up. “I have a lot of respect for Coach Sagula as a leader,” he said. “I think the best thing I can do is to put the money in his hands, spend the money as he sees fit, expand his program,” he said. his.

Gutterman is a mentor for two sports students, giving lessons that Dr. Miller taught Natalie Chandler ’21 (women’s football) and Katherine Ward ’24 (swimming and diving). Today, two students were awarded the Gutterman lessons: Nia Parker-Robinson (2021-22) and Mayle Mitrovich (2020-21).

Gutterman’s generosity to his alma mater over the years shows his appreciation for the educational and sports opportunities given to him in Carolina. “I’m the one who got the greatest gift of all of this,” he said.

Gutterman said he is fortunate to give in this way, but also sees other donors constantly giving small amounts over many years to the same effect for both the recipient and the recipient. happiness for donors. “In the long run, these gifts combine,” he said. “Gifts are important along the way. You can change them in any way.”

Launched in 2019, the FORevHER Tar Heels initiative will secure the future of Carolina Women’s Athletics through philanthropy FOR HER. . FORevHER Tar Heels is building a community to compete with Carolina’s female undergraduate students through the financial support of 15 organizations, including scholarships, supplies and leadership programs.

Learn more about FORevHER Tar Heels and the impact you can have on future Tar Heels

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