Davidson Foundation grants $250,000 to WBU for Missions Work

February 5, 2010

PLAINVIEW – Wayland Baptist University has received a grant for $250,000 from the James A. “Buddy” Davidson Charitable Foundation in Midland for missions work.

The gift will be used to establish an endowment in the foundation’s name, the annual interest from which will assist students in making foreign mission trips through the Wayland Mission Center. The foundation donated $150,000 up front, with the additional $100,000 to be given in 2011.

The James A. “Buddy” Davidson Charitable Foundation was established in memory of Buddy Davidson, a military veteran who held two degrees from the University of Texas in Austin, one in business and the other in law. Davidson worked with various oil and gas companies before starting his own oil company in 1979. He was a generous man, contributing to many causes such as wildlife, children’s issues, animals and the environment. He was a strong believer in education, and the foundation has supported many universities with scholarships and professorships to make education accessible for students.

“The generosity of the Davidson Foundation towards Wayland Baptist University is truly transformational,” said Dr. Paul Armes, WBU President. “The endowment will not only enable many of our students to have life-changing mission experiences around our world, but it will also enable those students to change that world in positive and profound ways.”

Mission Center Director Dr. Rick Shaw added his own gratitude for the endowment, which will allow many more students to experience the life-changing missions experiences that occur annually. In addition, area churches may utilize the mission center to coordinate trips or participate in trips Wayland is taking as part of their own call to mission service.

“I am astonished by the sacrificial generosity of the Davidson Foundation, and their commitment to the cause of global missions through students,” said Dr. Rick Shaw, who is also assistant professor of religion and missions.  “The investment that the foundation is making will benefit the Kingdom of God in many places, and among many people, for many years to come. The Lord has blessed WMC with a definite demonstration of His grace through the Davidson Foundation.”

The foundation and its president, Buddy’s widow Sandra Davidson, will be honored at the March meeting of Wayland’s Board of Trustees. A bronze plaque marking the endowment will be dedicated at that time and will be hung in the new Flores Bible Building and Chapel when that project is completed in the future. Funds are still being accepted for the Flores facility, which will also house the WBU Mission Center.