Loyalty. Integrity. Humor.
Dan Morin was a huge asset to the foundation and will be greatly missed.
Posted: Wed, Aug 3, 2011
Dan Morin had a giving spirit, and it suited him for working at a charitable organization.
When co-workers brought their kids to the office, he always made certain to have a toy on hand for them, such as a stuffed animal.
When staff joined together to aid a local charity for the holidays or to adopt a family in need, he helped generously and inspired others to participate.
When a tornado leveled the town of Hallam, Neb., Dan was among the volunteers who helped in cleaning up.
"Whenever the hat was passed to help – whether it was to help a fellow staff member or a local family in need – Dan was the first in line to help and champion the cause," said Vice President and Treasurer Jason Kennedy, who worked alongside Dan for more than 18 years.
Dan, 62, died June 16 after a long battle with cancer but rarely let health concerns or medical treatments prevent him from being at work and interacting with his friends and colleagues at the University of Nebraska Foundation.
He took pride in the fact he only missed one foundation committee meeting in 30 years – to attend a donor's 100th birthday celebration.
Dan began his service to the foundation in 1981 and is credited for building a well-respected accounting department. He served as treasurer from 1981 to 2010, at which time he was named senior vice president and director of investments. In this position he assisted the board of directors and leadership team in managing the foundation's investment portfolio of $1.3 billion and overseeing contracted fund managers.
"Dan cherished his role at the foundation," Vice Chair Terry Fairfield said. "In a very real sense, it was his life. He watched the University of Nebraska grow in size and quality and was pleased to be a part of its achievements."
Dan loved his hometown of Chicago. When he reviewed an expense report for a fundraiser returning from there, he would impress the colleague with his detailed knowledge of area restaurants, the trains they could take on the "L" and the radio stations to which they could have listened. Dan was a loyal Chicago Cubs fan, missing few opening games over the past 30 years.
Dan was "unusually competent," according to Huskers Athletic Director Tom Osborne:
"I had occasion to work with him, both as a head football coach and as an athletic director, and know that he made a great contribution to the University of Nebraska system. He will be missed by those of us in Athletics. We wish his family the very best."
Friend Bob Harris will miss Dan's unique, somewhat hidden sense of humor.
"Once, when his beloved Chicago Cubs were rumored to be for sale, Dan made a tongue-in-cheek proposal to the Finance Committee that the foundation take a run at buying the team," Harris says. "Some of the more experienced committee members joined in the fun by enthusiastically supporting this phony proposal – until realizing a few of the newer committee members, unaware of the joke, were horrified that the committee had gone completely nuts.
"Dan got a huge kick out of that."
Like all good Cubs fans, he always looked forward to "next year," when the team would surely win the pennant.
He fought cancer with this same outlook.
Dan represents the dedication, loyalty and commitment to our donors that we at the foundation strive to emulate. He will be greatly missed.