The University of Portland has announced a RISE Campaign gift of $250,000 from Larree M. Renda, an executive with Safeway Inc., based in Pleasanton, Calif., and a member of the University’s board of regents. The gift will help finance improvements of Joe Etzel Field, formerly Pilot Stadium, which was completed prior to the 1988 baseball season. The stadium was renamed in the summer of 2004 in honor of former Pilots athletic director and long-time head baseball coach Joe Etzel.
The first phase of the baseball stadium upgrades include installing artificial turf, in place of the natural grass field, stadium lights and outfield/perimeter fencing, according to athletic director Scott Leykam. Fundraising is continuing with the goal of completing the first phase immediately after the conclusion of the 2014 baseball season. Following the initial renovations, a second phase is being developed which will include new grandstands, improved concession and ticketing facilities and coaches offices.
As executive vice president for Safeway, Renda is responsible for all retail strategies and a broad range of administrative functions for one of the largest food and drug retailers in North America. She began her Safeway career in 1974 at the age of 16. She progressed through Safeway’s retail ranks and earned the distinction of being the youngest store manager, district manager and retail operations manager in Safeway’s 86-year history. She was the first woman and youngest person promoted to senior vice president in 1994, and become Safeway’s first female executive vice president in 1999. Her son, Tommy Renda, graduated from the University in 2009 with a bachelor’s degree in finance and earned an MBA at UP in 2013.
For more information contact the development office at 7395, or go to the RISE Campaign website at http://rise.up.edu.