University shares the love, chocolate with donor

Carrie Scully

“Eat more chocolate” was the topic of conversation and advice given by a university donor, Olga Mural, at a luncheon yesterday afternoon in the College of Business Administration.

“Make sure your heart is good, and keep eating chocolate,” Mural insisted right before eating her chocolate dessert.

Yes, Valentine’s day is over, but an invite-only group of two accounting students and four members of the administration from the College of Business Administration continued to share their love for Mural, whose generosity has greatly impacted the university and its students, said Joseph Macedo, the director of planned giving, who serves as a middle man between the university and its primary donors.

“It is wonderful to have people who want to leave their gifts as a legacy for future students,” said Ralph Kletzien, director of development. “Olga is an example of the difference people can make.”

And what a difference she has made, Macedo said. Since 2002, Mural has helped fund 10 Medallion Founder’s Scholarships, has donated $1.5 million to the state-of-the-art Olga A. Mural Financial Engineering Trading Floor and is the first living donor to give to the President’s Entrepreneurial Fund.

Melissa Schlotterer and Jennifer Hallos, both sophomore accounting majors and recipients of the Olga and Walter Mural Medallion Scholarships, had lunch and met with the well-known donor.

“It’s exciting to be able to put a face to the name,” Hallos said. “I am grateful to have the opportunity to thank her in person.”

Mural said she is glad and proud to have the opportunity to help the students, including Schlotterer and Hallos. Mural’s generosity stems from her love for the school and the people in it, she said. Mural fell in love with a Kent State graduate, Walter Mural, and they were married for 37 years.

Her husband practiced law in Akron, and they resided in a house in Brecksville. This house was donated to the College of Business after her husband’s death in 2002, which ignited a family-like relationship with the school.

The school has held the lunch for Mural for the past three years around Valentine’s day to symbolize its appreciation for her, said George Stevens, dean of the College of Business and Graduate School of Management.

“It is the most exciting day of our year,” Stevens said. “She really gives from the heart. She cares deeply about what we do and helping students.”

Mural stuck to her chocolate advice and gave everyone a big bag of fun-size Snickers as a gift at the end of the lunch.

Contact College of Business Administration reporter Carrie Scully at [email protected].