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Taylor campus in the spring

Chuck and Lisa Surack Make Second Gift to Life to the Full Campaign

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Chuck and Lisa Surack

Taylor University has received a significant pledge of an undisclosed amount from Charles “Chuck” and Lisa Surack of Fort Wayne for Life to the Full, the Campaign for Taylor—an initiative to raise $500 million for the University’s strategic plan, Taylor Thrives. Notably, $280 million has already been secured in gifts and gift commitments.

“When I first had the opportunity to get involved at Taylor, I quickly realized it was about something much bigger,” said Chuck. “Lisa and I invest in Taylor because we believe in the school; we believe in the students; and we believe in the mission of Taylor University. I've been able to travel the world where I’ve met graduates, and I’ve also hired Taylor graduates. They make our world a much better place.”

The Suracks previously donated $5 million for the Horne Academic Center, Taylor’s newest academic facility which will open this summer and house the Film and Media Arts program as well as the Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship.

“The Suracks’ most recent pledge, which surpasses their previous gift, represents a tremendous endorsement for Taylor and our future. We are so grateful for their generosity and support, which is catalyzing even more investments in our campus and our community,” said Dr. Michael Lindsay, President of Taylor University.

Chuck Surack, a well-known Indiana entrepreneur, founded Sweetwater Sound in 1979, as a four-track recording studio that was housed in the back of his Volkswagen bus. A few years later, Surack gained a national reputation for his skills with the Kurzweil K250 synthesizer, while providing custom sound design and recording studio consulting to many well-known artists. Since its founding, Sweetwater, headquartered in Fort Wayne, has grown to be the number one online retailer of musical instruments and pro-audio equipment in the United States.

The Suracks are recognized as leading philanthropists in northeast Indiana where they have served in numerous volunteer roles and regularly give to over 600 organizations annually. They especially focus on the critical importance of mental health, child and family services, music and the arts, and economic development in the areas they serve.

In 2018, Surack received an honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters from Taylor University in recognition of his contributions to the state of Indiana and his example as a Christian businessman and community leader. Chuck is also a member of Taylor’s Board of Visitors, a volunteer leadership group that advises the president and other campus leaders. He also co-chairs the Life to the Full fundraising campaign.

“Chuck and Lisa are wonderfully generous with their wisdom, influence, and leadership, as well as their resources,” said Mike Falder, Vice President for University Advancement. “Chuck, serving as Co-chair of our Campaign Council and a member of our Board of Visitors, is making a profound difference for our students and mission. We are so grateful for the many ways the Surack family has blessed Taylor.”

The Surack gift adds to 48 other seven-figure or more gifts made to the Life to the Full Campaign—one of the largest funding initiatives ever for a Christian university. The Taylor community would like to thank the Surack family for their generosity and continued philanthropic leadership. To learn more about Life to the Full, The Campaign for Taylor visit this link.