I'm probably never going to have to worry about getting to the point where I have so much money that I have to decide which cause is most worthy of it. Some people do, obviously, I'm just not one of them and probably won't be.
Paul Foster is one of those guys, apparently. Before today, I didn't know much about him. After Baylor announced a few minutes ago that he has pledged $35 million to the building projects for the new business school and Baylor Stadium, I do now. Because Paul Foster deserves to be known; after all, he and his wife just gave the single largest pledge of any living donor in Baylor history, as far as we know. That's fairly incredible.
Paul Foster is, apparently, a billionaire. He lives in El Paso, and has spent millions transforming that city. He's now spending millions to help Baylor continue transforming itself, and will have a portion of the new business school named after him, as well as a Founder's Suite (the highest possible level) in the new stadium (I think that means he gave at least $15 million to the stadium project, but I don't know). His wealth is derived primarily from the stock price of his company, Western Refining, which is based in El Paso and having a bit of a heyday at the moment. He is also, interestingly enough, a regent on the Board of Regents for the University of Texas system, having been appointed by Rick Perry in 2007. I won't hold that against him because, simply put, I love me some Paul Foster. The next time I go to El Paso, which will also be the first time I've ever been to El Paso, I will tell random El Pasoans thank you for Paul Foster.
It's people like Paul Foster, Drayton McLane, John Eddie Williams, Walter Umphrey, and the like that ensure Baylor gets to keep moving forward. Their generosity in giving back to the school that gave them so much in turn allows that school to keep giving. In a world full of vicious cycles, this is not one of them.
So take a moment, wherever you are right now, to thank Paul Foster. It won't be weird, even if you're in the bathroom. Just thank him for what he's done, since he's now the single greatest living donor to Baylor University. Oh yeah, and thank Art Briles. Just because.