Former Bend Mayor has made a commitment of $800,000 to Oregon State University–Cascades that will help the institution finalize its purchase of a building to house many of its graduate and research programs including its expanded master’s degrees in business administration, public health and fine arts in creative writing.
A Bend resident since 1970 and president of Cayuga Properties, Bruckner served as a Bend city commissioner in 1988 and was elected mayor in 1992. He is an alumnus of Cornell University and the University of Oregon.
“I have lived in Bend for forty years,” said Bruckner. “The community has been very good to me. When I look around, I see many special people that have given much, both of their time and their financial resources to better our community. I realize I have not given back as much as I have profited. Now is the time to correct this and what better way than to help boost higher education in Bend.
Almost everyone agrees that the number one priority for a strong community is an educated populace. Bend has a fine public school system, an outstanding and well established community college, and a fledging four year university that deserves and needs greater support. Therefore this gift to OSU Cascades so it can expand its programs and own its real estate is a university must. This will strengthen the university and help assure its permanence in Bend.
“My wife and I, both University of Oregon graduates, are excited to be part of invigorating the expansion of a university for Central Oregon, with its upper division and graduate programs.”
The building, located at 650 SW Columbia St. in Bend, has a full purchase price of $3.88 million. Bruckner’s gift will complement $2 million in lottery bonds approved in June by the Oregon State Legislature, with the additional funds of $1 million being provided by OSU-Cascades.
“This new building will allow us to move our graduate programs as early as spring term, and will accelerate the evolution of OSU-Cascades into a comprehensive university,” said Becky Johnson, vice president for OSU-Cascades. The rapidly growing campus has an enrollment this fall of approximately 750 junior, senior and graduate students – an increase of 10 percent in headcount, and 16 percent in FTE, over last fall.
House Bill 3627, which provided the support, was introduced by Rep. Jason Conger (R-Bend) and sponsored by Sen. Chris Telfer (R-Bend) and Reps. Gene Whisnant (R-Sunriver), Mike McLane (R-Powell Butte) and John Huffman (R-The Dalles).
“Allan Bruckner’s generous gift illustrates increasing confidence in the campus’ evolution into a comprehensive university. Not only is he contributing towards the building, he is setting the stage for continued philanthropic support from the Central Oregon community,” said Johnson.
The next step, OSU-Cascades administrators and Bruckner agree, is to continue the growth of the institution and develop support for degree programs, faculty endowments and student scholarships.
“We truly hope others will take note of this support and that it will be a catalyst for the community to concentrate efforts on nurturing development of OSU-Cascades,” Bruckner said.
Bend Research will lease a portion of the space where it hopes to spur future public/private research collaborations. The Governor’s Regional Solutions Center will lease another 1,000 square feet and AT&T will continue its lease of 6,000 square feet. It’s estimated that OSU-Cascades will save $225,000 annually by owning it own building, not needing to rent space form Central Oregon Community College where it current has offices and classroom space.
The purchase of the building was handled by Brian Fratzke, principal broker and founder of Fratzke Commercial of Bend. “This is excellent office space to provide OSU-Cascades with great expansion and growth opportunities to continue their success,” remarked Fratzke. “Between OSU-Cascades and Fratzke Commercial we’ve had over twenty people working on making this project come to fruition.”
Seller/Owner of the building was Dr. Charles Bonnett who was represented by Amy Cawrse | principal broker & asset manager for Oliver Commercial Group in Bend.