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York College of PA receives gift from former BOT chair George Glatfelter II and wife for new Knowledge Park

May 16, 2023
George Glatfelter and his wife.

Former Chair of the York College of Pennsylvania Board of Trustees George Glatfelter II and his wife, Beverly, have made a $1-million gift designated for the Knowledge Park project within the EVOLVE comprehensive campaign.

Glatfelter, the fifth generation of his family to lead the former Glatfelter Company in York, PA, has a particular affinity for the mission of the Knowledge Park, which will provide a place for the campus community to enjoy high-impact experiential learning while also accelerating the region’s economic development. 

“At its core, what compelled my wife and I to support this effort was that it was a unique example of academic outreach,” he said. “More than simply studying something, the vision of the Knowledge Park has the practical element of doing something with the knowledge you have gained.” 

Glatfelter’s history of service to York College, for which he has a deep abiding affection, spans many years. He was a member of the board of trustees for 28 years, including serving as chair from 2012 to 2016. He led the presidential search that recruited the College’s fourth president, Dr. Pamela Gunter-Smith, and he has supported the College through generous commitments to the York College Fund, numerous special projects, and capital campaigns. Glatfelter was awarded an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters in 2016.

Glatfelter felt compelled to support the Knowledge Park due to his own leadership experiences. “A lot of organizations go through generational change and face exactly the same challenges that I did,” he said. “The Knowledge Park experience hopefully will provide guidance to people like myself at a point in their career when they have questions they couldn’t answer or experiences they couldn’t get.”

Now retired, Glatfelter says that “Life is simple, quiet, and family-based. I do a lot of fishing, and Bev likes to travel.” They have chosen to support the College at this time to honor retiring president Gunter-Smith.

“We feel it is always important to give back to the community,” he said, “and there’s no dearth of opportunities. What caused us to become excited and passionate about making this gift was Pamela. We wanted to support her. We thought her vision was on point and that she was the right leader at the right time for York College. Those things caused the York College funding opportunity to differentiate itself from others we were looking at. People matter, and Pamela’s legacy to the College will be profound.”

“I am grateful to George and Bev for their gift to the College,” said Gunter-Smith. “I am especially delighted that they chose to direct their gift to one of my major legacy projects, the York College Knowledge Park. The Knowledge Park will provide opportunities for faculty and students to engage in relevant and high-impact learning projects with local businesses in the broader York community. As my first York College Board Chair, George was a remarkable and patient mentor as I assumed the presidency. I am so appreciative of his guidance and now the gift that marks confidence in the vision I set forth for the College during my tenure.”