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Giving to Vanderbilt

Oak Leaf Society

The newly established Oak Leaf Society recognizes committed donors whose annual gifts serve as the foundation for Vanderbilt's growth. Gifts of any amount, to any area of Vanderbilt, given for two or more consecutive fiscal years count toward Oak Leaf Society participation, and are greatly appreciated.

Various durations of loyalty are recognized—from Founder participants who are just starting a tradition of giving annually to Capstone participants who have shown commitment to Vanderbilt through annual giving for 20 years or more. Participation is sustained as long as gifts are made to Vanderbilt every fiscal year (July 1 to June 30) without interruption.

Loyalty Matters

Each year more than 26,000 Vanderbilt alumni, parents, friends and community members demonstrate loyalty to Vanderbilt by renewing their annual gifts.

Participation in the Oak Leaf Society signifies being part of a special community of donors dedicated to shaping the future of Vanderbilt. It's a community making a difference every area of Vanderbilt—from informed and creative teaching, student scholarships, cutting-edge research, patient care, and service to the community and society at large.

Regardless of the area you support each year, or how much you choose to give, the impact of your gifts is powerful. Collectively, annual gifts influence Vanderbilt's ability to meet new opportunities and emerging needs while also honoring the timeless tradition of giving to Vanderbilt.

In addition to honoring your support, the Oak Leaf Society provides a means for loyal donors to become further engaged with Vanderbilt as volunteers. Many volunteer opportunities are available to participants. A list can be found by visiting

How to Become a Participant

When you give any amount to any area of Vanderbilt for two fiscal years in a row, you will be recognized for your generosity by the Oak Leaf Society. In order to sustain participation and achieve new recognition levels, simply make a gift every fiscal year without interruption.

The Oak Leaf Society is a vital community of Vanderbilt supporters, and the university is proud to acknowledge participants at the following qualifying levels:

  • Founder — 2 to 9 years of consecutive giving
  • Ambassador — 10 to 19 years of consecutive giving
  • Capstone — 20 or more years of consecutive giving


Vanderbilt is extremely grateful for the commitment Oak Leaf Society participants make each and every year. Recognition of loyal donors includes:

  • Oak Leaf Society participant card
  • Oak Leaf Society window decal
  • Donor impact report
  • Special certificates of achievement upon reaching five years of consecutive giving and every fifth year of consecutive giving thereafter

Buyback Program

Participation is sustained as long as a gift is made to Vanderbilt every fiscal year (July 1 to June 30) without interruption. You can give to any school, the medical center, athletics, research or any other area that interests you. Participants who miss a fiscal year of giving to Vanderbilt have the opportunity to rejoin the Oak Leaf Society through "buying back" giving years that were missed and resuming annual giving. Years may be bought back at a rate of $25 per year.

Give Today

Will you help shape the future of Vanderbilt by making your annual gift today?

You can also learn more about participation in the Oak Leaf Society by contacting the Office of Annual Giving at (800) 288-0028 or

Frequently Asked Questions

Give Today

Will you help shape the future of Vanderbilt by making your annual gift today?

You can learn more about participation in the Oak Leaf Society by contacting the Office of Annual Giving at (800) 288-0028 or

  • “My father was in graduate school at Vanderbilt when I was born. My husband and I met while we were students at Vanderbilt. Our three sons are all Vanderbilt graduates, and we have one grandson who is a graduate. We appreciate the opportunity to be able to give back to an institution that has given so much to our family.”

    Cornelia Carter Sundermann, BSN’50
    Loyal Vanderbilt supporter for more than 20 years

  • “I value the education I received at Vanderbilt because it helped me to broaden my perspectives, experiences and self-image. I’ve never been able to give large gifts, but as an ordinary alumnus, it is important for me to give back to Vanderbilt every year, partially repaying those whose past gifts made my education possible.”

    William Russell Young, BA’56
    Loyal Vanderbilt supporter for more than 20 years

  • “I loved my four years at Vanderbilt and know they wouldn’t have been possible without the help and generosity of others. I think it’s very important to pay that generosity forward every year so that today’s students might enjoy the same experience I did.”

    John R. Markham III, BA’01
    Loyal Vanderbilt supporter since 2004

  • “My time at Vanderbilt was pivotal in molding who I am today. I am so grateful for all the opportunities that Vanderbilt provided. I believe that giving back is an essential component to each of our lives. No matter who we are, philanthropy transcends all cultures and barriers. I give because I know that it is making a difference.”

    Alice Byrne, BS’07
    Loyal Vanderbilt supporter since 2008

  • “I give to Vanderbilt because the experience shaped my character and who I am today. From fond memories with friends and faculty to eventual job opportunities that came forth based on being a Vanderbilt graduate, I'm constantly reminded of how fortunate I am to have gone there and will forever feel indebted.”

    Sarah McGlamery, BS’03
    Loyal Vanderbilt supporter since 2006

Oak Leaf Society

Ways to Give

Every Gift Makes a Vital Difference.

  • arrow Online

    To make your gift online, use our secure online gift form.

    Vanderbilt accepts Visa, MasterCard, American Express and Discover credit cards.

  • arrow Telephone

    To make a gift by telephone,
    call 1-866-882-FUND (3863).

  • arrow Mail

    To mail your gift, print our giving form to include with your check, credit card payment or money order.

    Mail your gift to:
    Office of Annual Giving
    PMB 407727
    2301 Vanderbilt Place
    Nashville, TN 37240-7727

  • arrow Electronic Bank Draft

    To set up an electronic bank draft,
    call 1-866-882-FUND (3863) or use our printable electronic bank draft form.

  • arrow Stocks and Securities

    To request information on transferring gifts of stocks and securities click here.

    Please email or call (615) 875-1155
    with any questions.

  • arrow Planned Gifts

    Learn more about planned giving opportunities here.

  • arrow Matching Gifts

    Many employers have matching gift programs that could double or even triple your gift.

    Learn more about matching gifts here
    or call 1-866-882-FUND (3863).

  • arrow Donor Advised Fund

    If you have a donor advised fund, DAF Direct enables you to recommend grants to Vanderbilt University, directly from your DAF (as long as your DAF's sponsoring organization is participating). Learn more here.

Why I Give

Tell why you give to Vanderbilt.

  • “We give to Vanderbilt because of the extraordinary experience it is giving our son. A phenomenal education, outstanding professors, lifelong friendships and a desire to give back to his community. We couldn't ask for more. We look forward to our son being able to give back to Vanderbilt...forever.”

    –Immy Mullin, Current Vanderbilt parent

  • “Vanderbilt gave me so much—an education, friends, work experience, mentors and lifelong memories. Attending Vanderbilt may not have been a reality for me and many of my peers without the generosity of alumni who gave back. I give so others can experience an amazing university that's there to support student development with every resource possible. I give so that Vanderbilt can continue to provide quality education to diverse populations with unique and meaningful perspectives. I give so that Vanderbilt continues to train and develop leaders who will positively impact and shape our world. Vanderbilt gave me so much, now it's my turn.”

    –Nick Hall, BS’13

  • “I’m blessed to have a healthy daughter and healthy granddaughter. I can’t image the struggles families go through with sick children. Nashville is so fortunate to have a hospital like Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt, and it’s my pleasure to give whenever I can afford to do so. No matter how small my donation is, I feel certain Vanderbilt is putting the money to good use.”

    –Karen Hickox, Supporter of Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt

  • “As the parent of a student who was blessed to attend Vanderbilt, I feel that it is my family's responsibility to give back. I give back for several reasons. First, while attending Vanderbilt, my daughter received a quality education, both in and out of the classroom. Next, it is my hope that by putting something back, someone else will be able to receive the same quality education. Finally, it is my way of saying, ‘thanks’.”

    -Leadrester Granger, Parent of Vanderbilt alumna

  • “I value the education I received at Vanderbilt as both an undergraduate and graduate student. I have always loved my university and have supported it as I could throughout the years. The friendships, the fun at sports events, the sorority activities, and alumni events are a cherished part of my life. Thanks so much!”

    -Bonnie Seay, BA’66, MA’80