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Wells family continues their lifetime of service with Tower Society gift

 West Virginia University alumni Joe and Gina Wells became the newest members of the WVU Alumni Tower Society by making a $50,000 contribution to the WVU Alumni Association.

West Virginia University alumni Joe and Gina Wells became the newest members of the WVU Alumni Tower Society by making a $50,000 contribution to the WVU Alumni Association, helping to retire the building debt of The Erickson Alumni Center.

“We wanted to give back to the Alumni Association because our WVU degrees have provided us with the opportunity to become successful,” said Joe Wells. 

Joe and Gina each graduated from West Virginia University in 1987 and have dedicated their lives to supporting their alma mater. In 1994, Joe became President of the Greater Pittsburgh Chapter of the WVU Alumni Association.  In that role, he and Gina hosted numerous events bringing alumni together and started scholarships for students from their area.

“We decided to give back initially by serving the University as chapter leaders and it became a passion of ours, a piece of our lives that we really loved,” said Gina Wells. 

According to Gina, as soon as she stepped onto West Virginia University’s campus as a student, she knew there was no turning back; WVU was where she wanted to be. Joe is a second-generation Mountaineer; his father attended WVU on the GI Bill and studied agriculture.

“I grew up on a farm near Sistersville, West Virginia and knew I wanted to study engineering at WVU,” said Joe Wells, “This was the place for me. There was never any doubt in my mind.”

In 2002, Joe was selected to become a member of the WVU Alumni Association Board of Directors and served during a pivotal time, when the decision was made to construct a new alumni center.

The Association moved into The Erickson Alumni Center at Statler Wilson Commons in 2008, where it is now acknowledged as one of the premier alumni buildings in the country. The 48,000 square foot facility serves as a hub for many University events and the home away from home for graduates and friends.

“We hope our gift will help sustain the incredible facility and valuable programming the Association administers in service to alumni and the University,” said Joe Wells.

Sean Frisbee, President and CEO of the WVU Alumni Association, added, “Joe and Gina have dedicated their lives to helping West Virginia University and they’ve instilled the notion of philanthropy and service in their three children as well. 

Joe was an active chapter president and board member and is now part of our 1873 Society for former members of the alumni board. The Wells are a great example of alumni who have gone above and beyond to support fellow Mountaineers.”

The WVU Alumni Tower Society was established to sustain and upgrade The Erickson Alumni Center. To learn more about the WVU Alumni Tower Society, please visit:

The Wells’ generous gift was made through the WVU Foundation, the independent non-profit corporation that generates, receives, and administers private gifts for the benefit of WVU and its affiliates. 

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