The Johnnie and Shirley Johnson Family Foundation have pledged $250,000 for Black Hills State University business scholarships and to help with the construction of the BHSU Alumni-Foundation Welcome Center.

Construction plans are underway for an Alumni-Foundation Welcome Center at BHSU, which will support the University’s financial development; and also strengthen relationships with alumni and provide ongoing communication to increase the visibility of BHSU.

The Johnsons have established that $150,000 of their pledge will help with the construction of the Center. This donation gives an extraordinary jump-start to the project. The entertainment room of the Alumni-Foundation Welcome Center will be named in their honor. The remainder of their gift will be designated for business scholarships.

Johnnie, who is a 1970 business graduate of BHSU, retired two years ago as the chief executive officer (CEO) of CHS, an energy, grains, and foods cooperative. He had been with the company for 34 years. He says his education at BHSU provided a foundation that has served him well as he advanced to become the CEO of a Fortune 100 company. “My business classes set the tone for me. My business degree was a great background that I’ve relied on to understand the complex financial matters I worked with at CHS,” said Johnnie.

There are several other naming opportunities within the Alumni-Foundation Welcome Center that are still available, including the naming of the building. First Interstate Bank recently donated $30,000 to name the conference room and Mick Dana, Class of ’69, his wife, JoConda, Class of ’92, and their family, Spearfish, donated $25,000 to name the gardens.

To donate to the facility or for more information contact Steve Meeker, vice president of University Advancement at BHSU, at (605) 642-6385 or email Steve.Meeker@BHSU.edu.