Bill and Martha Forsyth have created the Forsyth Family Endowed Scholarship Fund in the College of Media. The fund will provide scholarships to undergraduate students.


As a graduate of Illinois, Bill has many fond memories of his time on campus, and he considers graduating Bronze Tablet as one of his proudest accomplishments.

Two encounters help to demonstrate the “small world” situations that often occur with Illinois alumni. While a student, Bill was a member of the Student Alumni Association and often escorted alumni dignitaries when they visited campus. In 1985, one of the Illini Comeback guests that Bill met was B. Kenneth West ’55 LAS, then the chairman of Harris Bank. A year later, when Bill was applying for the MBA program at the University of Chicago, he contacted Mr. West for a reference letter. Mr. West obliged, and Bill was admitted to the program. Bill later learned that Mr. West was chairman of the board of trustees for the U of C at the time.

Fast-forward 29 years. Bill and Martha’s son, John, a junior in the College of Media, applied for and received an internship with InStadium, a live sports video network. Bill and Martha were thrilled for their son and learned that the president and CEO was Dave Kissel — journalism alum of the college whom Bill had known since college and who married Sue Riley, a sorority sister of Martha’s. Illinois connections run deep!

Bill and Martha have a great deal of confidence in the leadership of the College of Media. They appreciate the time Dean Jan Slater spent with John when he was making his college decisions. They know that media is a rapidly changing industry, and as parents, they are confident that John is gaining the experience he needs to make an impact in the industry and be an innovative leader.


If you have questions or would like to discuss donation options, please contact:

  • Marlah Bonner McDuffie
    Associate Dean for Advancement
    College of Media
    217-244-5466
    marlahb@illinois.edu