The Zieglers Look to Endowment to Secure School’s Future
Bob Ziegler sees the CHARGING forward campaign for what it is, and more importantly perhaps, for what it isn’t. To Bob and his wife, JoDell, it isn’t about their two kids benefitting from the new buildings. It isn’t about the aesthetics of getting rid of the ‘temporary’ trailers (known as the West Wing). And it certainly isn’t about their gift.
To the Ziegler family, the beauty of the CHARGING forward campaign is that it’s a big community action we all can take together.
“Collectively, this entire community is going to raise the building and literally raise our endowment,” explained Bob. The joy in giving comes from understanding that the campaign creates a path for everyone who is so proud and grateful for what Providence Day has done for their family to actually have an impact on the school’s future. One gift at a time, yet connected to the whole.
Bob views the campaign as an extension of the school’s culture and history. “This amazing school was not only built by the sweat of others, but the buildings we enjoy today were all built by those who came before us. Now it is our turn to build for the future a legacy of what will continue to be – I hope for the next 100 years – an elite college preparatory school. It’s a continuum. As my grandfather used to say, ‘Leave the woodpile a little higher than you found it!’”
The ability to develop a long-term solution to the campus infrastructure is an element of great importance. The financial aspect of the campaign – growing the endowment – is also something that the Zieglers believe is paramount to the school’s ability to survive challenging economic times. “Any time an organization relies on short-term solutions, it is just asking for trouble,” said Bob. He doesn’t ever want to see Providence Day put in a position where its mission or purpose could suffer.
The value of protecting and sustaining the Providence Day mission is not lost on the Zieglers. They remember vividly a moment in the Lower School library where the words “a passion for learning” came to life. “Seeing students engaging with each other on projects, working on computers, reading on their own in bean bags near the fireplace – these are all indicators of a comfortable, welcoming learning environment. It is phenomenal.”
Bob and JoDell are the proud parents of Jack, Bo ’23 and Reese ’24.