Gift to encourage others to follow in pioneers’ footsteps

Lois Price Spratlen and Thaddeus Spratlen.

Thaddeus Spratlen and Lois Price Spratlen, ’76, UW emeritus professors who broke barriers and raised the bar for women and people of color in higher education, have presented the UW with a $1 million lifetime gift to ensure that students of color will have the opportunity to benefit from a UW education.

Thad, professor of marketing from 1972 to 2006, was the first African American faculty member at the UW Foster School of Business, the first to receive tenure and the first to receive emeritus status. He worked to establish the Business and Economic Development Center (BEDC) that supports small businesses owned by minorities and women.

Lois, who earned her Ph.D. in urban planning from the UW in 1976 and was a nursing professor from 1976 until 2010, wrote an influential book on how women are treated in university settings. She also was the first female UW ombudsman.

Their gift will ensure that BEDC will flourish. Since 1995, the BEDC has helped generate millions in revenue and more than 6,000 jobs.