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Major gifts propel MSU-Northern football stadium project forward

Posted at 11:54 AM, Sep 20, 2019


HAVRE -- Montana State University-Northern announced that it received two major gifts totaling $550,000 in support of MSU-Northern’s athletic facilities.

The gifts were made to the MSU-Northern Alumni Foundation and came from two local sources: The Tilleman Family gifted $400,000 and Independence Bank contributed $150,000.

“These donors have grasped the important role this project plays in moving Northern forward,” said MSU-Northern Chancellor Greg Kegel. “They understand that by investing in our athletic programs and strengthening student life, they are contributing to overall student success and the long-term health of our campus.”

Before the Homecoming football game on September 28, MSU-Northern plans to publicly announce plans for the university’s new football stadium. Both gifts will support that project.

“As a ‘hometown’ bank, we’re committed to supporting our local communities,” said Bill Keller of Independence Bank. “It is critical to keep Northern strong and I have no doubt this stadium will help us recruit and retain players and students.”

In addition to its financial gift, Independence Bank has also agreed to finance all campaign pledges for the full value of the pledge at zero percent interest. This will allow Northern to begin construction immediately after reaching the campaign goal, and donors can make their pledge installments over a number of years.

The Tilleman family, owners of the Tilleman Motor Company GM, Chrysler and Challenger dealerships, echoes that commitment to community.

“Havre has been so good to us,” said Mike Tilleman, a long-time MSU-Northern supporter. “We are committed to giving back and helping it grow. We’re excited for what this stadium will do for the university and student life in the years ahead.”

Tilleman, a former NFL player, received the 2015 Founder’s Excellence Award in honor of his loyalty and commitment to MSU-Northern.

“We’re excited to build on that community-wide pride by investing in our athletic programs to ensure our student-athletes and our fans have high-quality facilities and a high-quality experience,” said Kegel. “These gifts are a big push toward achieving that goal.”