CFRE Gift in Time for Christmas

Old Mission Bank Gift to CFRE

Leadership of Old Mission Bank recently funded the first installment on their commitment to LSSU’s Center for Freshwater Research and Education with a $25,000 check presentation.  President/CEO Gary Sharp and EVP/CEO Cathie Chenoweth presented the check to LSSU President Rodney Hanley, joined by LSSU Foundation Executive Director Tom Coates.

In May, 2018, the leadership and board of Old Mission Bank confirmed their support of the project with a pledge of $125,000 toward the campaign and the opportunity to the name the Old Mission Bank Observation Deck at LSSU’s Center for Freshwater Research and Education.  The facility, to be located on the Sault’s waterfront east of the Cloverland Electric Power Plant, will meet the current and future research needs at LSSU, as well as educational opportunities for the area and economic development for the Eastern U.P.

“Old Mission Bank is such an important leader in our community, and a great partner of many projects at Lake Superior State University,” said Rodney Hanley, LSSU President. “Their generosity has been inspirational to others in this campaign and we’re very grateful for their commitment to see this structure built for the University, the community and the region.”

Outstanding progress has been made toward the capital campaign goal of $4.35 million to provide the necessary matching funds under the State of Michigan’s capital outlay program.  A redesign of the project has resulted in a total project cost of $14.3 million, with a commitment of $8.85 million by the State and the remaining cost secured by the University through fundraising and grants. A total of $13.85 million is currently committed to the project. Construction has started with necessary groundwork currently being performed on the Alford Park location with the target completion date of December 2020 for LSSU’s occupancy.

“We are pleased to be a partner in this project with what it will do to improve the Sault’s waterfront and the fresh water research opportunities it will provide Eastern U.P. students,” said Gary Sharp, President/CEO of Old Mission Bank.  “Re-investing in the educational and economic viability of the communities we serve is a key mission for our organization.”

Old Mission Bank is the operating entity of Old Mission Bancorp, Inc. a locally owned and controlled single bank holding company, formed in 1999 by twelve local incorporators, eleven of whom continue to serve as Directors of the Bank and its holding company. The bank operates a main office in Sault Ste. Marie and a branch office in Pickford.

For more information on the CFRE project or make a gift please go to or call Tom Coates, Executive Director – LSSU Foundation at (906) 635-6670 or email