Entrepreneur Tom Devlin, friends and WSU leaders celebrate 25th anniversary of Devlin Hall

1)	Tom Devlin, founder of Rent-A-Center and Flint Hills National Golf Club, speaks at a celebration marking the 25th anniversary of the building named for him, Devlin Hall.
Tom Devlin, founder of Rent-A-Center and Flint Hills National Golf Club, speaks at a celebration marking the 25th anniversary of the building named for him, Devlin Hall.

Wichita entrepreneur Tom Devlin and his wife, Myra, gathered with friends, business associates and Wichita State University leaders and faculty on April 15 to celebrate the 25th anniversary of Devlin Hall, home to the WSU Center for Entrepreneurship.

    The event was held in Devlin Hall on the WSU campus.

    In his remarks, Devlin, founder of Rent-A-Center, praised the leadership of WSU professor emeritus Fran Jabara in founding the Center for Entrepreneurship in 1977. Devlin, who attended WSU, also challenged those assembled to redouble their efforts to make the center one of the top five in the United States.

    The Devlins made a significant gift in the late 1980s to support the center and other campus areas. A portion of their gift helped build the 27,555-square-foot building named for them.

    Among those attending the celebration were Jabara, WSU President John Bardo and First Lady Deborah Bardo, WSU Vice President for Academic Affairs Tony Vizzini and WSU Foundation President and CEO Elizabeth King.

    Representatives from the W. Frank Barton School of Business and the Center for Entrepreneurship included Cindy Claycomb, the school’s interim dean; Lou Heldman, the center’s interim director; and several faculty members.

    After the luncheon ceremony, Devlin, who also developed Flint Hills National Golf Club, was interviewed by Lou Heldman and WSU Professor Don Hackett as part of the Center for Entrepreneurship’s Meritrust Forum Series in Devlin Hall auditorium.

Lou Heldman, left, interim director of the WSU Center for Entrepreneurship, presents a limestone marker to Wichita entrepreneur Tom Devlin and his wife, Myra, at a celebration Tuesday in honor of the 25th anniversary of Devlin Hall, home to the Center for Entrepreneurship.
Lou Heldman, left, interim director of the WSU Center for Entrepreneurship, presents a limestone marker to Wichita entrepreneur Tom Devlin and his wife, Myra, at a celebration April 15 in honor of the 25th anniversary of Devlin Hall, home to the Center for Entrepreneurship.

 

Tom Devlin and his friend and mentor, WSU professor emeritus Fran Jabara, who founded the WSU Center for Entrepreneurship.
Tom Devlin shares a moment with his friend and mentor, WSU professor emeritus Fran Jabara, who founded the WSU Center for Entrepreneurship.

 
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