Taking care of the family Ensuring OC's future
Bobby and Millie Roberson are "people" people.
They are connectors and developers. They are friends. Most importantly, they are family ... and the Robersons take care of family.
Committed to OC for more than 50 years both individually and now as a couple, Bobby and Millie are transforming lives here through an estate gift and life insurance gift that fund student scholarships.
Long before they met each other, Bobby and Millie Roberson were active supporters of Oklahoma Christian. Bobby fondly recalls attending a 1961 ribbon-cutting ceremony at Oklahoma Christian featuring Pat Boone.
Since then, Bobby has participated on various boards at OC, including his current service on the board for the Academy of Leadership & Liberty. In 2005, he received an honorary doctorate from Oklahoma Christian for his leadership in business and in the community.
Likewise, Millie has supported the university for decades and currently serves on OC's board of trustees. Many young engineers have taken their first steps into thermodynamics and systems design within the halls of the Prince Engineering Center. Made possible through Millie's generosity, the facility is named in honor of Millie and her late husband, Darryll Prince.
Having each lost their first spouse early in life, Bobby and Millie have shared an inspired partnership for nearly two decades since they married in 1991.
Through business, community and church, Bobby and Millie have built an extended family across the nation.
"Success in business and in life has always been about building quality and lasting relationships," said Bobby, whose autobiography, The Making of a Champion, uses his early experiences as a Golden Gloves boxer as an analogy for successful business principles.
Bobby's homegrown company, originally known as Southwest Typewriter Company, began in his one-car garage in 1956 with a $50 loan from his mother. This once fledgling business has grown into a multimillion-dollar conglomerate, ImageNet America. It is now run by Bobby's children and grandchildren.
The Robersons' emphasis on family and relationships has sustained their involvement with OC. As longtime friends of Dr. Stafford and JoAnne North, former President and First Lady Dr. J. Terry and Marty Johnson, and current President and First Lady Dr. Mike and Nancy O'Neal, their connections run deeply.
Perhaps Bobby's most farsighted gift to OC is a life insurance policy he gave in 2006. Each month, Bobby makes a tax-deductible gift to OC, to pay the policy premiums on which OC is the owner and beneficiary. When he passes away, the policy proceeds will fund a perpetual endowment, providing scholarships for generations of OC students to come.
"We've been urging people to do this for years," Millie said. "It is a uniquely powerful and efficient way to give much more than you ever thought you could."
"Bobby and Millie's story of perseverance, creativity and love for family and OC is an inspiration to all of us who love Christian education," President O'Neal said. "The Robersons' lifelong leadership giving has empowered OC's life-shaping work. Their creative estate and planned giving is a secure legacy, communicating their most important values for generations to come."
By Will Blanchard (07)