When it comes to generosity and service to Iowa State University, few couples compare to the remarkable Lora and Russ Talbot. The Talbots are ISU Foundation governors who were extensively involved in Campaign Iowa State: With Pride and Purpose and are co-chairs of the current campaign Forever True, For Iowa State for the College of Veterinary Medicine and honorary co-chairs for the ISU Alumni Association campaign cabinet.
The couple endowed the ISU Alumni Association president and CEO position − the first non-academic endowed position at Iowa State University and the first endowed alumni association president and CEO position at a college or university in the U.S. They established the Talbot Hall of Alumni Association Leadership and History and funded two named offices in the Alumni Center. They supported the association’s VISIONS Across America project, Cardinal & Gold Gala for six years, the ISU Alumni Center endowment and the Alumni Center Wall of Alumni and Friends. They created and endowed the “ISU Alumni Association Cardinal & Gold College of Veterinary Medicine Scholarship” supporting two students each year with two-year scholarships.
In the College of Veterinary Medicine, the Talbots established the “Talbot Scholars in Veterinary Medicine” endowed scholarship program providing four-year scholarships to seven students annually and created an endowed veterinary medicine graduate fellowship. They made major gifts for building the Lloyd Veterinary Medical Center and Hixson-Lied Small Animal Hospital. They have been 5-year benefactors and sole sponsors for the college’s annual scholarship awards program and receptions.
Elsewhere on campus the Talbot name can be seen at the College of Human Sciences annual ISU Fashion Show. The Talbots endowed both the “Best in Show” scholarship and the newly created “Merchandising Scholarship.” They are 9-year sponsors for the ISU Foundation’s annual Women & Philanthropy workshop. The Talbots are truly everywhere on campus. They volunteer. They give. When Iowa State University has a need, the Talbots consistently and enthusiastically answer the call.
The Talbots’ involvement with Iowa State is inspiring and extraordinary – made more so by the fact that neither attended Iowa State. They are heavily involved with and support numerous community and charitable organizations in their hometown of Belmond and beyond.
The Talbots received the ISU Foundation Order of the Knoll Cardinal & Gold Award for 2013. For the ISU Alumni Association, Lora was a non-alumni representative on the board of directors and Russ was a board associate. They are members of the ISU Foundation Order of the Knoll William M. Beardshear Society and Campanile Society and the Cyclone Club. They are ISU Alumni Association life members and 14-year sustaining life donors.
The Iowa State University Alumni Association is an independent 501(c)3, self-governing organization charged with the mission of engaging the talents and resources of alumni, students, and friends in the life, work, and aspiration of Iowa State University. Our vision is to become the lifetime partner in engaging all alumni, students, and friends with Iowa State University.