Board of Trustees’ Award
Justus Fugate is a true champion for Wichita State University and Wichita. He publicly advocates for what he believes to be in the best interest of both. It’s not surprising to hear that Justus has asked friends and colleagues to join a committee or suggest inclusion of an organization in their estate plans. He takes his causes to heart.
Justus was a Shocker even before he attended the University of Wichita, receiving bachelor and master degrees in mathematics in 1960 and 1962, respectively. His mother, Josephine, was the first woman to serve as president of the Board of Regents of Wichita University. She would later retire from WSU as dean emeritus of women and professor emeritus of mathematics and statistics. His father, Justus Sr., practiced law in Wichita for nearly 60 years. He also served as mayor and on the Board of Regents for Wichita University.
The list of WSU memberships to giving clubs, councils and boards is as long as his contributions to his university passions. Justus is a life member of the WSU Foundation’s Fairmount Society and President’s Club and is a member of the Society of 1895. For more than 10 years, he has been a member of the WSU Foundation Board of Directors and the Foundation’s National Advisory Council, currently chairing the giving committee. Justus is a life member of the WSU Alumni Association and a former member of its board. On the university side, Justus serves on the Student Affairs Development Advisory and Music Associates boards. He also is an honorary ambassador with the Student Ambassador Society and is a member of Delta Upsilon Fraternity and the Ulrich Museum Alliance. Three of many important accomplishments that Justus has helped WSU achieve include establishing the first computing center, acquiring new equipment and furnishings for the Annual Fund telephone campaign and providing, with his wife, Ann (deceased 2003), the first blazers for the Student Ambassador Society.
From pianos to anthropology and the Plaza of Heroines to the Shocker Athletic Scholarship Organization, Justus continues to support various aspects of his alma mater, benefitting people, programs and his community. He pulls from his family and experiences when helping others as is evident with the scholarships he’s supported: Josephine B. Fugate Endowed Music Scholarship, Josephine B. and Justus H. Fugate Mathematics Scholarship, Ann A. and Justus H. Fugate SAS Endowed Scholarship and Delta Upsilon-Men of Webster Scholarship.
Justus’ civic commitments are just as varied as he has served as member, trustee, volunteer, treasurer, chair, director and governor of more than 20 organizations. They range from Botanica to Planned Parenthood and from endowment foundations to the University Congregational Church.
His corporate ventures have included software, plastics, water, computer service, banking and finance. Justus co-founded four businesses between 1969 and 1998 and sold five businesses between 1989 and 2009. He brings his enterprising sense to all aspects of his life. Currently, Justus is the chairman of Kansas Venture Capital Inc., a private equity investor for small companies.
“At least six generations of my family have taught since 1800,” said Justus. “Supporting education is in my lineage and I’m proud that it will also be my legacy.”
Justus represents the continuation of a 200-year commitment to community and education. His partnerships with WSU and his community have fostered significant advancements to a future of great possibilities. We are proud to honor him with this year’s Board of Trustees’ Award.
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