Donor Spotlight

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Ted Farmer

(William) Ted Farmer

Are you an alumnus of ODU?
        No, Rice University '72

What is your favorite memory of ODU Athletics?
          September 20, 2014: After having flown into Houston the night before, I took my nephew  James Gregory and his son Aidan to Rice Stadium, where we watched my ODU football team defeat my alma mater, Rice University, 45-42. This game was the fulfillment of a most unlikely dream. It arose from a chance conversation that I had with then Athletic Director Jim Jarrett in the summer of 2006. I told Jim how excited I was that ODU was bringing back football and pondered the possibility that ODU might someday play my alma mater. "Where did you go to school?" Jim asked. "Rice University" I replied. Jim then exclaimed, "Oh, no, they're way to good for us to play them!" Well, I thought, "Why not?' As a 12th Monarch, I yelled and screamed as our football team did so well at the FCS level. Then we took the leap of faith into Conference USA which had Rice as a member. Then we were dealt Rice as our first C-USA football opponent. This opportunity was a "dream come true" for me, and I was there as we won in dramatic form! Believe me: it was worth the eight-year wait!

Why do you support ODU athletics and its student-athletes?
         I love watching college football, and men's and women's basketball. I love following the teams and seeing the student-athletes develop and mature over their time here. Everyone I have met in ODU athletics displays strong character and a passionate commitment to excellence both in their sport and in the classroom. I am proud and happy to contribute to ODAF.

What do you like most about ODU as a whole?
I like that ODU provides the opportunity to earn a bachelor's degree to students who are the first in their family to attend college.

What makes you most proud of ODU?
      I see every day how well the faculty and staff accomplish our missions within the contraints of so little state funding.

If you could describe ODU in one word, what word would it be and why?
         Opportunity. Here at ODU, students, faculty and staff, by working hard and intelligently, can create their own opportunities.

Is there anything else you would like to tell us about yourself?
         I am from Texas, the son of a junior high principal and a third-grade school teacher, both of whom lived through the Great Depression. I attended Rice University on a four-year Army ROTC scholarship. Upon graduation, I received my commission, went on active duty and retired as a major in 1992. When I was laid off from private industry in 2005, ODU took a chance with me. I am very grateful for the opportunity to work and contribute at ODU.