“In its 112-year history, God has always provided Abilene Christian University with gifted men and women of faith, talent and energy to serve the university in educating students for Christian service and leadership throughout the world,” Garrett said. “Brad Benham is proving to be one of those special people. Under Brad’s capable leadership, The ACU Foundation will rise to greater heights of service to our students, alumni and friends.”
Benham returned to his hometown of Abilene in 2015 to work for The ACU Foundation, a planned giving resource for alumni and friends of the university, having previously worked as an attorney in Los Angeles, California. He earned a juris doctor degree from Pepperdine University School of Law in 2008. He and his wife, Janelle, have a daughter, Henley.
“It was a great day when Brad agreed to join our team, especially when he convinced his California bride to move to West Texas,” Garrett said with a laugh.
“The experiences I have had here working with alumni and friends of the university has been a blessing, and I am honored to assume this new role,” Benham said. “I’m grateful for the example Dan has set and that he will still be a vital part of this great organization. Hopefully, my leadership of day-to-day foundation operations will free up Dan’s time to continue to work with ACU families for years to come.”
Rounding out The ACU Foundation team are gift officer Lance Rieder (’98), who has worked in Advancement since 2000, and resource officer Rana Travieso (’02), who previously worked as an Exceptional Fund officer beginning in 2013.
“Together, our team is available as a resource center for friends of ACU looking to build the university endowment and achieve their own philanthropic goals,” Benham said.
Garrett began his work at ACU in 1973 as a development officer in charge of the President’s Circle. In 1977, his role shifted to estate planning and planned giving, counseling donors and friends on their tax and philanthropy decisions. He left the university briefly in 1984 but stayed connected by serving on the Alumni Advisory Board and, beginning in 1991, on the Board of Trustees. Garrett resigned as a trustee in 1995 to return to the university as vice chancellor, and in 1998 he became the inaugural president of The ACU Foundation. He celebrated his 38th year of service June 1.
“I look forward to continuing my work with the Foundation and families who desire to leave a legacy for future generations,” he said.
“Dan’s life work has been helping families craft a legacy that will hopefully last for generations to come,” Benham said. “Through financial and estate planning, family guidance and mentoring, and spiritual counseling, Dan has led The ACU Foundation to help hundreds of families navigate how best to pass down both their valuables and, more importantly, their values to future generations. His contribution to ACU is invaluable. Our goal is to continue his good work.”
Learn more at theacufoundation.org or by calling 325-674-2508.