University Marketing + Communications
HIGHLAND HEIGHTS, Ky. – First-generation students at Northern Kentucky University will now have more opportunity to succeed due to the generosity of a prominent alumnus who was once a first-generation student himself.
Rich Boehne (’81) and the Scripps Howard Foundation have donated $1 million to the Boehne Family First Generation Scholarship fund, which was established at NKU in 2012. Boehne and his wife, Lisa, were both first-generation students at NKU and are prominent alumni.
“Northern Kentucky University provided us with a life-altering opportunity to expand our horizons and succeed both professionally and personally. And wherever our lot in life takes us, it is important that we continue to engage and give back,” the Boehnes said. “We hope to help a new generation of students to pursue their dreams and help change the world.”
Lisa Boehne attended NKU on a President’s Scholarship and is a former journalist and an artist. Rich Boehne is chairman, president and CEO of Cincinnati-based The E.W. Scripps Co., one of the nation’s largest local television and digital media companies and a digital journalism pioneer. He is a member of the Associated Press board of directors, vice chairman of NKU’s Board of Regents, and a member of the NKU Foundation Board of Directors. Boehne is also the recipient of NKU’s Professional Achievement Award (1996), Outstanding Alumnus Award (2001), and Lincoln Award (2012).
Rich and Lisa met in the Mass Communications/Journalism program at NKU. They credit the bachelor’s degrees and experiences they gained at an affordable public university for opening the doors to opportunity in the media industry.
“By the time I was 12, I was determined to be a reporter. But my journalism adventure began in earnest the first time I walked onto NKU’s campus and into a learning environment that enabled my professional career,” said Rich.
“We should never overlook the profound impact we have on first-generation students and their families. A college education can open up a world of additional choices and opportunities – like it did for us, and we are forever grateful,” said Rich and Lisa.
“We are grateful to Rich and Lisa Boehne for their continuous support of our University, through this gift as well as the ongoing gift of their time and talents,” said NKU President Geoffrey S. Mearns, who also serves on the NKU Foundation board of directors. “Their generosity continues to ensure that our students can succeed and achieve their dreams.”
The Boehnes will be honored during Homecoming Weekend Feb. 5-7, including a special presentation on Saturday, Feb. 6 during the men’s basketball game at BB&T Arena.
The $1 million gift is made possible through the Scripps Howard Foundation and The E.W. Scripps Co. The Boehne Family First Generation Scholarship is administered by the NKU Foundation and is awarded annually to high-achieving students who are the first in their family to pursue a college degree and have demonstrated a commitment of service to others.
The Scripps Howard Foundation is a leader in journalism education, scholarships, internships, literacy, minority recruitment/development, and First Amendment causes. It helps build healthy communities and improve the quality of life through support of sound educational programs, strong families, vital social services, enriching arts and culture, and inclusive civic affairs.
The NKU Foundation, founded in 1970, oversees private donations and gifts to Northern Kentucky University to advance the mission of the University and help ensure the success of its students.