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Contact: Michael Traupman, Director of College Relations, 610-740-3790
Abigail Fota, College Relations Associate - Media

Cedar Crest College Receives Major Gift in Honor of Alumna
Harold Keen Makes Gift in Honor of Late Wife's 60th Reunion
Berta and Harold Keen Multi-Media Classroom to Be Established in New College Building on Campus

Allentown, PA (May 18, 2004) - Carlisle businessman Harold Keen has made a substantial gift to Cedar Crest College to establish the Berta and Harold Keen Multi-media Classroom in the new Harold and Miriam Oberkotter Center for Health and Wellness. The new facility is currently under construction on campus. The gift from Harold Keen is being made in conjunction with Berta's 60th Class Reunion, which is being held May 21 - 23 on the Cedar Crest campus. Berta (Berta Herr Keen '44) died late last year at the age of 81.

"It is exciting to know that hundreds of students each year interested in careers in health and wellness will benefit from Harold Keen's gift," says Dr. Dorothy Gulbenkian Blaney, president of Cedar Crest College. "This new state-of-the-art classroom will offer a magnificent learning environment. I am delighted and most grateful that Harold Keen has decided to honor his wife's 60th reunion in this way."

Keen was inspired to give the money for the new facility after his wife's battle with Parkinson's disease. The 100-seat, Berta and Harold Keen Multi-media Classroom is the centerpiece of the Oberkotter Center for Health and Wellness - a facility that is designed to support the tremendous growth in the health sciences. It is also an important piece in the College's Health Connection program - an initiative designed to create a culture of health and wellness on the Cedar Crest campus and beyond.

Berta Keen graduated from Cedar Crest with a degree in Business Education after serving as class president. She was a lifetime member of the College's Alumnae Association until she passed away in October.

The Keen's have established a long tradition of community service and philanthropic activities. The Keens received the Alexis de Tocqueville Humanitarian Award from the United Way of Carlisle and Cumberland County in 2002. Over the years, the Keens have awarded more than 35 scholarships to students seeking higher education.

The Keen's community involvement in the Carlisle area dates back to the 1960s when they first moved to that area. Almost immediately, Berta joined the Carlisle Hospital Auxiliary and Harold joined the local Rotary. Berta served as a volunteer at Homewood Retirement Homes, where she was on the board of directors. She went on to serve as the auxiliary's president. She was also a member of the Friends of Bosler Library and the Cumberland County Historical Society. She served on the board of trustees of the Carlisle YWCA and was a member of the Dauphin Training Dog Club. In addition, Berta served on the board of directors of United Church of Christ Homes.

Keen is chairman of Keen Transport, a long-distance, general freight company with locations throughout the U.S. The company owns a large fleet of truck tractors, trailers, and semi-trailers and provides fleets to many major corporations. Harold keen is a charter member of Samaritan Fellowship. He served on the Board of Keystone Area Council of Boy Scouts, and was on the board of directors for the American Red Cross.

Both Keens served as elders and president of the church consistory of the First United church of Christ in Carlisle. Additionally, they were both active volunteers with the United Way.

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Abigail Fota
College Relations Associate - Media
610-740-3790
afota@cedarcrest.edu


 


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