March 5, 2009
DALLAS (SMU) — A fountain provided by a gift from Valeria Late of Dallas was dedicated on March 5 on the SMU campus.
The Val and Frank Late Fountain bears the name of the donor and her late husband. Constructed of granite, the 42-by-64-foot oval fountain has a wide rim for seating and additional benches placed around it.
The fountain is located in front of Dedman Life Sciences Building at the intersection of University Boulevard and Airline Road on the east side of the campus. A new building to house the Annette Caldwell Simmons School of Education and Human Development will be constructed on the other side of the intersection.
"The Val and Frank Late Fountain will provide a gathering place for students and a beautiful arrival point on SMU's east campus, as one approaches the campus from Central Expressway on University Boulevard. The Late Fountain will be flanked on the south by the new Annette Caldwell Simmons Hall," SMU President R. Gerald Turner stated. "The beauty of the SMU campus is one of its greatest attractions to prospective students. We are grateful to Val Late for enhancing the beauty of the rapidly developing east campus."
Frank Late, who died in 2002, was an oil and gas entrepreneur with interests in domestic and international oil field services. He owned and operated Cactus Drilling Corporation, which was one of the country's largest drilling companies when it was sold in 1980. He also had interests in automobile dealerships, including Friendly Chevrolet in Dallas and Late Chevrolet, now Reliable Chevrolet, in Richardson. His other interests included manufacturing, soft drink bottling, banking, oil and gas exploration and ranching.
Valeria Late served on the Dedman College Executive Board from 1998 to 2004 and is a member of SMU's Dallas Hall Society, composed of individuals who support the University's advancement through deferred gifts, such as wills, annuities and charitable trusts. Mr. and Mrs. Late have been major supporters of the SMU Annual Fund, Altshuler Learning Enhancement Center and the Laura Lee Blanton Student Services Building.
"The Late Fountain supports goals of the Second Century Campaign, which SMU launched in September 2008 with a goal of $750 million," said Brad Cheves, vice president for development and external affairs. "The campaign seeks funds for student quality, faculty and academic excellence and the campus experience. By enriching the campus environment, the Late Fountain contributes to the experience of all members of the campus community."
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