When Dale Reynolds ’67 was a young boy he dreamed of being a mechanical engineer and that dream never left his mind. That’s why the Massachusetts native chose to further his education at Clemson College, a school with a reputable engineering program.
“I loved it here,” said Reynolds. “My roommates were my best friends, and I still keep in touch with them 54 years later. I enjoyed my time at Clemson tremendously.”
Prior to retiring to Pendleton, South Carolina, Reynolds spent 33 years of his career in Texas working with ExxonMobil and serving Clemson as a member of the Alumni Council. While in Houston, he met his wife, Jackie, a Texas A&M alumna. Throughout the years, Clemson has had a large affect on her as well, leading her to grow to dearly love the southern school.
Dale and Jackie Reynolds’ passion for Clemson shows through their generous support. In 1997, Dale Reynolds began funding the D.W. Reynolds Distinguished Professorship for Mechanical Engineering Department Chair. “The Professorship was an idea I had because of the generous 3:1 match that was available from ExxonMobil. It was a fun process, and Clemson was extremely helpful in helping me identify a strategic need for engineering,” he said.
In 2012 when the mechanical engineering department was seeking to retain talented young faculty members, there was no endowment in place for this purpose. This led Dale to step up again, this time to establish the Dale Reynolds ’67 Emerging Faculty Scholar Endowment. “I really wanted to give back to mechanical engineering because that degree was so good to me,” he said.
Jackie has become more familiar with her husband’s alma mater in more ways than one. In 1991, Jackie began funding the Jacqueline Morrow Reynolds Endowment for Music in order to strengthen and grow Clemson’s music and performing arts department. “Music expands your mind, it helps you learn, and I thought it would be helpful to do that. I think my endowment was the first one in the performing arts department, and the unrestricted fund allowed them to use it however they wished. I think they have done a fantastic job with it. I’m very happy.”
In addition to music and performing arts, Jackie also holds a strong love for historic properties. The Pendleton resident has spent a lot of time with the Pendleton Historic Foundation and was involved with the ongoing preservation of both Woodburn and Ashtabula Plantations located in nearby Pendleton. “I was very instrumental in setting up an endowment for those two houses so I know the importance of having a preservation endowment for historic properties,” she said. Jackie was surprised when she learned that Fort Hill, the home of Anna Calhoun and Thomas Green Clemson, did not have an endowment, so she generously established one in her name. “It’s so difficult to keep something of this magnitude up without money,” said Jackie. “I knew we must have one for Fort Hill, and now we do — the Jacqueline M. Reynolds Conservation Endowment for Fort Hill.” Thanks to Jackie’s dedication to historic properties, this endowment was later expanded to include three additional historic properties here at Clemson — Hanover House, Hopewell and the Trustee House.
From academics to historic properties, it is evident that Clemson has a very special place in the Reynolds’ hearts. “The most rewarding part of giving back is seeing how the money is used. We can see the music department expanding and how much it has grown, and Dale has met the professors and really enjoys seeing the wonderful things they are doing with our money,” said Jackie.
The Pendleton couple is truly making an impact on Clemson today, tomorrow and forever, and they continue to remain dedicated. “We do plan to continue to give because it’s the best investment you could ever make. It affects lots of people. If you give a professorship and he positively influences a lot of people, then you have helped the school and left it better than it was when you started,” said Dale. “Clemson does so much for the state of South Carolina, and we want to remain involved with making sure that continues,” said Jackie.