news-category: Advancement

Gardner-Webb Supporters Surpass Double Dawg Day Records with $1.4 Million Raised

Thanks Dawgs

University Receives 1,366 Gifts to Fund Scholarships, Academic Programs, and Athletics

* “Top Performing” denotes most donor participation.

BOILING SPRINGS, N.C.—Faithful supporters answered the call in a big way on Gardner-Webb University’s ninth annual Double Dawg Day, April 11, setting new and impressive records for philanthropic giving. The one-day fundraising total reached its highest dollar amount ever — $1.4 million. New heights were also reached when GWU recorded the greatest number of gifts received in a single day and when the donor map for the first time included contributors residing in every U.S. state. 

Whether funding scholarships, athletic facilities and training, or enhancing classrooms and labs, each of the 1,366 gifts has a direct and lasting impact on the success of Gardner-Webb and its students.

Bulldog Nation painted the USA map red with donors from all 50 states and received especially strong support from alumni and friends in North and South Carolina. Generosity poured in from across the globe, too, with gifts coming from Canada, France, United Kingdom, Sweden, Austria, United Arab Emirates, India, South Africa, New Zealand — and the donor covering the most distance to make a difference at GWU sent a gift from Thailand, more than 8,900 miles away.

“This year’s Double Dawg Day was beyond special,” shared Gardner-Webb President Dr. William M. Downs. “We had 83 donors who were up between midnight and dawn at the outset of our 24-hour effort, defying the need to sleep, eager and excited just to get their gifts in first. Throughout the day, we watched in awe as the totals mounted and then accelerated dramatically as the last hour arrived. For a university of our size, this magnitude of donor investment is exceptional and will certainly make a positive difference in the lives of our students, faculty, and staff. To say that we are thankful is an understatement.”

Numerous challenges and opportunities unlocked gifts throughout the day, including donations to a new staff development fund and the Power Hour Challenge to unlock an additional $5,000 for scholarships.

“We are truly grateful for our donors and their remarkable generosity,” applauded Gardner-Webb’s Vice President for Advancement Nate Evans. “With more 1,300 donors, spanning across all 50 states and beyond, we are deeply humbled by your dedication. Your investments are catalysts for progress that raise the bar and help us pursue excellence. Thank you, Gardner-Webb family, for answering the call, and standing behind our mission.”

Donors displayed their school spirit by investing generously in the areas that mean the most to them. These included scholarship and program support for academics and matching gifts for many of the sport programs, the Christian Service Organization, and contributions to virtually every aspect of campus life.

Kanisha Fowler, Assistant Director of Annual Giving at GWU, also expressed her gratitude for all who participated. “I am blown away by the love and generosity of our community over the last 24 hours,” she asserted. “This is proof that Bulldog Nation stands strong and is connected across the country. Thank you for helping us empower students, increase institutional aid and elevate the mission and vision of the University.”

Double Dawg Day Leaderboard Spotlights

  • Gardner-Webb wrestling and football teams earned the most donor participation for athletic programs.
  • The College of Health Sciences and the College of Arts and Sciences recruited the most donors for academic program support.
  • For the second year in a row, the Searight PACE program, professional and continuing education, raised more than $100,000 for scholarships.

View more details on the day’s gifts and challenges, here.

Gardner-Webb University is North Carolina’s recognized leader in private, Christian higher education. A Carnegie-Classified Doctoral/Professional University, GWU is home to six professional schools, 14 academic departments, more than 80 undergraduate and graduate majors, and a world-class faculty. Located on a beautiful 225-acre campus in Boiling Springs, N.C., Gardner-Webb prepares graduates to impact their chosen professions, equips them with the skills to advance the frontiers of knowledge, and inspires them to make a positive and lasting difference in the lives of others. Ignite your future at

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