Bridges Family Establishes Planned Gift as Donation to GWU

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Kelly and Brett Bridges’ Contribution Results in Lifetime Bulldog Club Membership

BOILING SPRINGS, N.C. – Many couples can’t pinpoint the exact moment they fell in love, but most have vivid memories of the first time they met their ‘someone special.’  For Kelly and Brett Bridges, Gardner-Webb University will forever be the backdrop of their continuing love story as the tender memories of young love have been etched into their hearts and minds for a quarter of a century.

Kelly Sale and Brett Bridges attended Gardner-Webb in the mid-80s, each having developed a unique love for the University.  Their separate paths converged when a group of friends went dancing.  “Kelly was the original Bulldog mascot and was such a good dancer,” Brett recalled.   “We met, talked, danced, started dating, and fell in love.  We recently celebrated our 25th wedding anniversary.”

Brett (’87) played baseball for Gardner-Webb, while Kelly (’85) had grown up watching and supporting Bulldog basketball.  “Of course, I was already a basketball fan, but Brett just stole my heart and turned me into the biggest Bulldog baseball fan of that time,” Kelly said. “My experiences at Gardner-Webb were priceless.  I earned a valuable education from some of the best faculty and staff anywhere, developed friendships that are still strong today, and met my husband.  Now, our son enjoys supporting the GWU teams and it’s a joy to share in Bulldog Club activities as a family.”

The Bridges are now lifetime Bulldog Club members after establishing a planned gift in the form of a life insurance policy in which they named Gardner-Webb as owner and beneficiary.  “Gifts like this one help provide a significant contribution to the University with exceptional tax advantages for the donor,” said GWU Director of Planned Giving Greg Poe. “The value of the policy enables the family to utilize the benefits of Bulldog Club membership.”

The couple believes it is important to give back to their alma mater and encourages others to consider a similar contribution.  “It’s where we met, earned our degrees, and it will always hold a special place in our hearts,” said Brett.  “We’ve been Bulldog Club members for a while, but witnessing the growth and improvements at GWU, we felt it was time to become an even bigger part of the vision for the future.”

Kelly wholeheartedly agreed.  “We are truly proud to be graduates of Gardner-Webb and involved members of the Bulldog Club,” she said.  “Supporting our current and future students and student athletes is an honor.  I pray that each one is as blessed from their experiences at Gardner-Webb as we were.”

For more information on how to participate in planned giving, contact Greg Poe at 704-406-2157 or visit  To learn more about the Bulldog Club, contact Sarah Currie at 704-406-4630.