Barbecue restaurateur Keith Stamey gives WFU $7 million estate to establish scholarship

With a nearly $7 million estate gift from the late barbecue restaurateur W. Keith Stamey of Greensboro, Wake Forest University has established a scholarship that will assist 62 freshmen and returning students in attending the university in the fall.

It is the largest single gift made to Wake Forest by an individual, according to James Bullock, director of the university’s “Honoring the Promise” capital campaign. The gift establishes the university’s fourth-largest endowed scholarship fund.

Stamey, a 1959 Wake Forest graduate who died in June 2000, left his entire estate to endow a need-based scholarship to be awarded to students from North Carolina and adjoining states. They will receive awards ranging from $1,000 to $15,000, depending on need.

“Keith wanted to help Wake Forest remain accessible to its historical constituency, which was comprised generally of North Carolina students from families of modest means,” Bullock said.

Wake Forest President Thomas K. Hearn Jr. said the scholarship “will serve as lasting tribute to Keith’s dedication to the university, and especially his concern for our students.”

The gift will also help the university maintain its commitment to a need-blind admissions policy, which calls for admitting students without regard to their ability to pay and offering them financial aid.

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