Residence Hall C Renamed
Naomi Rainey House
On Thursday, November 1, CSULB hosted the official ribbon-cutting ceremony and dedication of the Naomi Rainey House on Beach Drive, renaming the third floor of Residence Hall C at the campus’ Hillside College in honor of the support and efforts of university alumna Naomi Rainey.
Speakers at the celebration included CSULB President F. King Alexander; Vice President for Student Services Douglas Robinson, who served as the master of ceremonies; Carol Roberts-Corb, director of Housing and Residential Life; and former CSULB undergraduate students Desiree Hernandez and Uduak Ntuk, who were previous recipients of the university’s Rainey-Pierson Scholarship, which was established more than 20 years ago.
“This is a very significant event in the history of this wonderful university as it marks the first time an official naming of a facility has been designated in the honor of an African-American who is a CSULB alumnus,” Robinson noted in opening the program.
“This is a fantastic honor for me to name this part of the facility after Naomi Rainey,” President Alexander said. “Naomi’s support shows students that not only contributing back to the university is important, but contributing to your community, staying close to your public schools, staying close to everybody who knows what you are committed to as a great leader in this city is also important.”
Rainey earned a B.A. in theatre arts and a minor in black studies from CSULB in 1972. She went on to earn two master’s degrees and seven teaching credentials.
“My reason for supporting this fine institution is to show that I appreciate all that I received here, and hopefully to motivate others to do the same—to give back,” Rainey said, noting that her support also carries out the wishes expressed in her late husband’s trust—the Paul Pierson Trust. “I truly hope that my support of CSULB will allow other young students to have the exciting experiences and the kinds of support I received, but especially the experience of living on campus.”
Making a Differnce
Bruce and Fusako’s introduction to CSULB began in the 1960s when they were college students. “We used to carpool to campus,” Fusako shared. “Bruce owned the car and we commuted from Gardena. For that, I am forever grateful.” Fusako and Bruce have been married for 47 years since their CSULB carpool days. After retirement, they embraced the opportunity to serve the university through a donation. Reflecting on their college experience, Fusako stated to Kathryn Courtney, director of development for Student Services, “Bruce and I fondly remember our CSULB undergraduate years and how we worked our way through college. CSULB was good to us and now we want to give back to our alma mater.”
The Thompsons are generous supporters of the CSULB General Scholarship Fund. Fusako and Bruce’s generosity will be a lifelong reminder of support for students who work while they achieve their academic goals. Through their estate plan, the Thompsons have pledged a total gift of more than $1.5 million.
“We consider ourselves blessed and have complete faith in CSULB, which will extend this support beyond our lifetimes,” Fusako said. Each year, a portion of the Thompson endowment will generate earnings to provide scholarships to students. Their dedication, and donation, will make a difference in the lives of many future CSULB students.