Phil Donahue and Marlo Thomas LGBTQ Student Scholarship

As GALA prepares to transition to a university approved alumni affinity group, ARC ND (Alumni Rainbow Community), one of the key aspects of the transition is the disposition of the member-funded LGBTQ scholarship.  One of our group’s proudest accomplishments has been the consistent financial assistance that we have been able to offer students with the Phil Donahue and Marlo Thomas LGBTQ Student Scholarship.  With your help, we have raised an amazing sum of $250,000!

In the next month, we intend to transition a significant portion of these funds to an endowment run by the university.   

What will change?

  • Fund management: Currently, the GALA leadership team manages the fund.   In the future, it will be managed by the university in the same manner as other university endowments.  
  • Fund growth: The GALA leadership team has taken a zero risk investment strategy with the scholarship funds. In the future, the scholarship fund will be invested to grow in the same manner as the university endowment. Over time, we expect the size of the scholarships as well as the number of scholarships to expand.       

What will stay the same?  

  • Recipients: Past winners have been ND and SMC undergraduates who are active in the LGBT+ community.   Future winners will be ND undergraduates who are active in the LGBT+ community.          
  • Who determines the recipients:  Past winners have been chosen by GALA leaders.   Future winners will be chosen by ARC ND leaders.

Comments, Questions, Concerns, Suggestions 

If you would like to speak with a GALA leader about this significant step, please contact Paul at, and he will connect you with a GALA leader.  We will like all feedback by December 8th

What’s Next?

It has taken 25+ years to build GALA, and we are being diligent in our approach to unwind. In the new year, expect to see an update on membership votes that are needed to sunset the organization.

The GALA leadership team is so proud of what we have accomplished together.  Throughout this process, we have prioritized transparency and inclusivity.  As we have had updates, we have been providing them.  If you have any questions or suggestions, please reach out at any time.

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