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Tom Mitchell, ISU Foundation (515) 294-4607
Dwight Hughes Jr. (319) 360-8787
Kevin Brown, ISU News Service (515)-294-8986


AMES, Iowa -- The Hughes family of Cedar Rapids has once again made an investment in horticulture that will have an impact on Iowa State University, its College of Agriculture and the state of Iowa.

Their deferred gift of $1 million to the Iowa State University Foundation will support the development of the new conservatory complex at Reiman Gardens on the Iowa State campus. The family will be recognized at the Iowa State alumni reception on Monday, April 23, in Cedar Rapids.

Their gift will allow Iowa State to expand its teaching and learning opportunities in horticulture, business, and related fields so that more students may obtain practical experience as a part of their education, said Richard C. Seagrave, interim president of Iowa State University.

"The goal of the conservatory complex is to support the multi-disciplinary academic programs and extension activities of the university. Iowa State students who study at Reiman Gardens will be among the best trained and able to obtain jobs and make discoveries in their chosen fields. For this, we are extremely grateful to the Hughes family," said Eric Hoiberg, associate dean for academic arograms in the College of Agriculture.

"Projects such as the conservatory complex are a critical aspect of ISU fulfilling its land-grant mission to provide opportunities to students," said Tom Mitchell, president of the ISU Foundation.

The Hughes family includes Hazel S. and Dwight W. Hughes; Deb and Dwight Hughes Jr.; and their children Tom, Judy and John. The family has close connections to both ISU and horticulture. Dwight and Hazel attended Iowa State in the 1930s. The younger Hughes received a degree in horticulture from ISU in 1970. Tom is currently a senior in horticulture, and John has been accepted to Iowa State. The nursery business goes back four generations, beginning with William Hughes, in 1908. Dwight Jr., who is an ISU Foundation Governor, and Deb, have owned and operated the Dwight Hughes Nursery since 1978. Dwight and Deb and their children are one of ISU's host families for the ISU "Strengthening families to become the best" celebration.

In honor of the Hughes family gift, two parts of the conservatory complex will be named after them. The learning center at Reiman Gardens will be named for Dwight W. Hughes, who is a member of the Iowa Nurseryman's Hall of Fame, and the hospitality center will be named for Hazel S. Hughes. The learning center will be used for all educational and outreach programs. It features audio-visual equipment built into the walls and ceiling. The learning center will provide hands-on experiential student learning in horticulture, entomology and related sciences and agricultural fields.

The hospitality center will be a visitor-oriented retail food service. The hospitality area will provide experiences for students in business and food management. Hazel S. Hughes studied institutional management while attending Iowa State.

"We are proud of our family's heritage with Iowa State University and feel this gift will be a legacy to the importance of horticulture and business opportunity for students, faculty, staff and visitors to the beautiful Reiman Gardens complex," said Dwight Hughes Jr.

Other features of the conservatory complex include a conservatory featuring permanent plants and rotating plant displays, a butterfly wing and a growing greenhouse. Construction of the conservatory complex is expected to be complete in the fall of 2002.

Reiman Gardens is named for Roy and Bobbi Reiman, Greendale, Wis., who donated the lead funds to build the gardens. Roy is a 1957 graduate of ISU.

The ISU Foundation is the central fund-raising arm for Iowa State, assisting the university by securing and managing private gift support from individuals, corporations and foundations. In 2000, it completed Campaign Destiny: To Become the Best, which raised more than $458 million over five years.


Iowa State University
... Becoming the Best
Ames, Iowa 50011, (515) 294-4111
Published by: University Relations, online@iastate.edu
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