Family's Gift Multiplies Significantly After Decades

PLAINVIEW – When Burton and Annie Craig gave Wayland Baptist University a gift of 653 acres of land in Sunray, Texas, in 1958, they probably never would have guessed what an impact it would make nearly 50 years later.

The Craigs placed the land in a trust with the Baptist Foundation of Texas with the stipulation that it would provide monthly benefits for the couple until their death. The original value was set at $65,000, and the trust has remained in investments since it was deeded.

Mr. Craig died in 1962, and Mrs. Craig died Oct. 16, 2006. When the trust fund came to Wayland upon her death, it was valued at $535,129. The gift was designated to go into the university’s endowment.

Longtime farmers in the Sunray area, the Craigs were firm believers in both the value of education in general and, more specifically, the importance of Christian education. Mr. Craig began a relationship with Wayland in 1942 when he began serving on the Board of Trustees.

In 1944, the couple moved to Plainview and became active members of College Heights Baptist Church, where Burton Craig served as a deacon and Sunday School teacher and Annie Craig helped in the nursery.

Their oldest son, James Craig, recalls the move during a World War II tire rationing that made traveling to school from the Sunray farm difficult at best. The move to Plainview made it easier for the Craig children to attend public schools as well as Wayland, a goal their parents had from the beginning. They would spend summers in Sunray on the farm.

James attended Wayland from 1945-47 and intended on transferring since the school was only a two-year college at the time. When it became a four-year college that year, he opted to stay and graduated in 1949. Wood Craig graduated in 1957, and daughter Twila attended for a brief time as well. Wood later served on the Wayland Board of Trustees as well.

The Craigs’ support for higher education was evident by their help for daughter-in-law, Bettie, who earned her degree in five years while giving birth to three babies in that time span. Mrs. Craig babysat while Bettie attended classes, knowing the benefits would far outweigh her sacrifice.

That same sacrificial spirit led the Craigs to include Wayland in their giving, leaving a gift and a legacy that will benefit generations to come.

“He was sold on Wayland,” James Craig said of his father. “That’s why they gave.”

Gifts such as these have convinced development officers at Wayland Baptist University that planned giving is not only beneficial to the donors but can help exponentially once the gift comes to the university.

“The Craigs’ gift multiplied by nearly 10 times over the 48 years it was invested through the Baptist Foundation of Texas,” said Betty Donaldson, vice president for institutional advancement at Wayland. “That is an amazing testament to the power of compound interest and how a gift made with much forethought can make an amazing impact when it comes to fruition.

“The Craigs’ generosity will be felt at Wayland for generations to come, all because they thought to include us in their giving plans.”

For more information on planned giving to Wayland, contact the Office of Advancement at (806) 291-3425.