alumnae relations & development

Boxwood Circle

Annual Giving


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Boxwood Circle

This past fall, we welcomed Sweet Briar’s interim president Dr. James F. Jones Jr. and his wife, Jan Sheets ’69, to campus, along with the large and talented class of 2018. Change and tradition combined to offer excitement as we began our 109th academic year.  

We are fortunate to have generous and involved alumnae whose gifts allow us to further our efforts to attract more students, address campus maintenance, and fund program development. We are continuing in our strategic planning initiatives and will focus over the next year and a half on three interrelated projects — market research, a fundraising feasibility study and renewed strategic planning.

Our student-faculty ratio remains low and our faculty and students continue to excel. Dean Amy addressed those successes in a recent letter. Take note: An atmosphere of excellence abounds.

In today’s academic climate, scholarships – whether for merit or need – continue to play a large part of the picture for most students. Our gifts to the College continue to attract the finest teachers and the most promising students.

The campus is still one of the prettiest anywhere. In our efforts to strengthen our “green” position, we have planted warm-season grasses to produce biofuel and reduce energy rates and footprint. In addition, this provides an excellent research opportunity for students.

The Mary Helen Cochran Library renovation was completed in the fall and it looks fabulous. The students have openly embraced the new space. We hope you were able to join us for the library dedication on Nov. 7 — what a great celebration it was!

We both encourage you to help ensure our legacy by giving at the leadership level. An investment in Sweet Briar today means the tradition of excellence will continue. We cannot succeed without you.

The College and Sweet Briar women need our generosity. Please consider your best gift at the leadership level today by going to or by mail. Your commitment to Sweet Briar will go to work immediately.


We are truly grateful for your generous support,

Kim Bramley Estep ’94 Jacque Penny ’71

Boxwood Circle Chair; Director, Boxwood Circle

Leadership giving at Sweet Briar has a long and distinguished history beginning in 1960, when Gladys Wester Horton ’30, Elizabeth Bond Wood ’34 and Nancy Dowd Burton ’46 together decided they wanted to raise alumnae giving to a new level and founded the Boxwood Circle Giving Society.

In the 50 years since, the Boxwood Circle has grown to recognize supporters who give $2,500 or more to the College in a fiscal year. Gifts may be cumulative and include both restricted and unrestricted gifts, including matching gifts. Since then, two new giving societies have been added, the Fountain Society and Column Society, to recognize support at the $5,000 and $10,000 level, respectively.

The leadership giving program encourages a strong connection between society members and the College and recognizes supporters for their extraordinary commitment to Sweet Briar. In addition to being recognized in the Honor Roll of Donors, members receive invitations to special events on and off campus.

Join the Boxwood Circle, Fountain Society or Column Society today. Your commitment to Sweet Briar at a leadership giving level carries forward a long and distinguished tradition of the College and is instrumental to ensuring the strength and vitality of Sweet Briar for the future.


Leadership 2013-2014 Honor Rolls (July 1-June 31, 2014)

Bell Tower Society
Pink Rose Society
Boxwood Society
Fountain Society
Column Society
Silver Rose Society


Leadership 2014-2015 Honor Rolls (July 1-Dec. 31, 2014)

Bell Tower Society
Boxwood Society
Fountain Society
Column Society


For additional information or volunteer support, please contact Jacque Penny ’71, director of Boxwood Circle.

“Sheryl Sandberg wrote a book to tell women to Lean In. At Sweet Briar, we were encouraged to do so every day by each professor. I would never have been able to own and operate a multi-million dollar company, earn multiple podium finishes in my race car, or develop an Internet startup without my Sweet Briar education. Every day I was encouraged to break through boundaries set by men. In business,  I’ve not only been invited to the table; I’ve been urged to challenge the speaker! AND I’ve maintained compliance with the SBC honor code, which I still know by heart. It’s part of who I am and what I stand for—though now it’s integral to life, not just to Sweet Briar.”

- Kimberly "Kim" Bramley Estep ’74 


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