In an on-field ceremony at the K-State vs. Oklahoma State University football game last Saturday, Rand and Patti Berney, Bartlesville, Okla., announced their $5 million commitment to K-State to establish the Berney Family Capital Project Fund.
This fund will provide support for the two highest-priority capital projects on K-State's Manhattan campus. The fund will be directed by K-State President Kirk Schulz for the renovation and maintenance of the welcome center at Memorial Stadium and the initial construction of the basketball training facility.
In recognition of this gift, K-State will name the athletic field adjacent to the welcome center at Memorial Stadium as the Berney Family Field, and will name the pre-function reception lobby in the basketball training facility as the Berney Family Reception Center.
The Berneys are members of the KSU Foundation's Presidents Club, a philanthropic leadership organization for friends and alumni of K-State. They have contributed to numerous funds and campaigns for more than 30 years, including Telefund, the College of Business Administration Dean's Excellence Fund, the K-State Alumni Association's Tradition Founders Fund, and the Ahearn Fund's National Leadership Circle. Rand Berney is also a member of the KSU Foundation board of trustees, and was recently elected to serve on the board's executive committee.
Rand Berney, a native of Phillipsburg, is currently senior vice president of corporate shared services at ConocoPhillips, an integrated energy company engaged in the exploration, production, refining, processing and marketing of petroleum and natural gas. He graduated from K-State in 1977 with a bachelor's degree in accounting, and earned his Master of Business Administration from Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, Okla., in 1982. In 2004 he was inducted into the K-State College of Business Administration's Business Leaders Hall of Fame, and was recognized as the college's Distinguished Business Leader of the Year. In 2006 he was again honored by the College of Business Administration when he was named an alumni fellow.
He has served as the company's liaison with K-State for 30 years, and since 2007 he has been instrumental in the success of the university's ConocoPhillips SPIRIT Scholars program. The program provides leadership and personal development opportunities in the form of mentorships and internships for students at K-State.
Patti Berney grew up in Derby and attended Fort Hays State University. She and her husband first moved to Bartlesville in 1981, where she was an active volunteer for the community, schools and church for 22 years. In 2002 the couple moved to Houston, and she continued to volunteer for activities with the Red Cross, Greenspoint Mission, Target Hunger and the Special Olympics.
Since returning to Bartlesville in 2009 she has served on the boards of Mary Martha Outreach, Family Crisis and Counseling, Price Tower Arts Center, Bartlesville Symphony Society, Friends of Frank Phillips Home and the Samaritan Advisory Board.
"Patti and I are excited about the vision and leadership that Kirk Schulz and John Currie have brought to K-State, and are pleased to be able to make a gift that will help them change the face of our great university," Rand Berney said. "K-State is a place where great things develop, from research and scholarship to student programs and athletics. To be a lasting part of that success is both humbling and satisfying."
"Rand and Patti Berney are making an enormous statement as to their belief in K-State," President Schulz said. "Their gift will continue to help us welcome the best and brightest students to our campus, and give our student athletes an outstanding experience as a part of K-State athletics. The better we can serve our students, the closer we are to our goal of becoming a top 50 research university by the year 2025. We are honored that the Berneys have chosen to become such an integral part of our future."
Philanthropic contributions to K-State are coordinated by the Kansas State University Foundation. The foundation staff works with university partners to build lifelong relationships with alumni, friends, faculty, staff and students through involvement and investment in the university.