Jimmie and Carrie Valentine of Ocean Springs, Miss., have pledged $25,000 in unrestricted funds the University of Mississippi School of Pharmacy.
“My wife and I are at a position in life where we wanted to share our financial blessings with the school that gave me an opportunity to acquire the necessary skills to have an exciting career in science,” said Jimmie Valentine, who graduated in 1968 with a doctoral degree in medicinal chemistry.
During Valentine’s tenure at the pharmacy school, he formed strong friendships with faculty and students.
“My late wife, Clarene Valentine, was a research assistant to the late dean Charles Hartman during our graduate days at Ole Miss,” he said. “At that time, there were about 25 graduate students in medicinal chemistry, and we all became great friends and shared many fun times together. Many of those graduate students went on to academic positions all over the United States, as well as key positions in various pharmaceutical companies. We all were well prepared for the positions by the outstanding education and mentoring we received.”
Valentine, who retired in 2008 from the University of Arkansas as professor of pediatrics, pharmacology and myeloma research, is a medical pharmacology and toxicology consultant. He and his wife, Carrie, had a strong desire to spend their retirement years in Mississippi.
“We selected Ocean Springs for our home and have loved the almost five years we have been there,” he said. “There is a strong group of Ole Miss alumni on the coast, and both the chancellor (Dan Jones) and Dean (David D.) Allen make regular trips to visit these alums. In fact, we first met Dean Allen at a noontime luncheon in Pascagoula. We immediately felt a kinship with him and have enjoyed our visits when he comes to the coast.”
Likewise, Allen has enjoyed getting to know the Valentines.
“In addition to being delightful individuals, they are so passionate about helping our school in any way possible,” Allen said. “We are very thankful for their support.”
The Valentines’ gift has been designated to support renovation of the school’s skills laboratory, which will be in use this fall.
“We wanted Dean Allen to have the flexibility to use the funds as he deemed appropriate,” Jimmie Valentine said. “We know the skills lab renovation has been a project that he saw as being extremely important to the student body. So we are happy if our giving has helped that effort.”
Raina McClure, the development director for the pharmacy school, emphasized the need for unrestricted gifts.
“Unrestricted gifts are so incredibly important,” McClure said. “These funds are allocated for the most important projects that the pharmacy school is undertaking at the time. We are extremely thankful for the Valentines’ generosity.”
To learn more about ways to support the UM School of Pharmacy, contact McClure at 662-915-6967 or [email protected]