Bill Joplin ’54 revealed as 6 million dollar man


Bill Joplin and Father Storey following the announcement of his great donation.

“Bill was an answer to our prayers, no doubt about it. He guaranteed the success of the campaign … transformed it. Having that size boulder go into the pond mid-way through our fundraising effort sent a reverberating belief of accomplishment and confidence to our community. So many wide-ranging examples … a $250,000 donor who indicated he was inspired by Bill’s initiative. But regardless of the amount of the each gift, Bill instilled that sense in so many Eagles that it’s now my turn.”
-President Fr. Kevin Storey, CSB

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   With the help of many of St. Thomas families and alumni, Mr. Bill Joplin may become a real $6,000.000 man.

   Joplin was the anonymous alumnus who made a pledge to match dollar for dollar every donation to the 4500 Forever campaign. The deadline for donations, Nov. 15, has passed, but Joplin has extended the deadline to Dec. 5, to encourage increased contributions. Some would wonder what would inspire the Joplin family to make such a generous donation.

   However, the Joplin family has a long history at St. Thomas. Joplin, a ’54 graduate, followed in his father’s footsteps, as his father is a graduate of the class of ’42. Joplin, who earned his undergraduate degree at University of Texas at Austin and his master’s degree at Rice, worked for his father’s oil and gas supply company. With his brilliant finance mind, Joplin propelled the company to become a very large and successful.

   Though the 4500Forever campaign has been going on since the school placed the $60 million dollar bid to purchase the HISD High School for Law Enforcement, Joplin made the decision to make his commitment to St. Thomas the school this school year. At first, Joplin decided to remain anonymous, so as not to bring attention to himself. The challenge was announced just before the start of this year’s Homecoming game Sept. 19.

   Eventually Joplin’s identity was revealed at the St. Pius football game Nov. 7. After the announcement the Eagles went on to defeat rival St. Pius X 38 – 14. According to an article on the school website, “Since the No Substitute for Victory Challenge was declared, Joplin’s bold generosity has generated $6.6 million, raising the 4500Forever total to $38 million.” But the deadline for donations is drawing nearer and there is still more money to raise. No amount is too small.

   The “No Substitute for Victory” challenge makes for a bright future for this esteemed institution. The expanded facilities of the North Campus will allow STH to increase extracurricular activities, expand athletics, expand classrooms, and offer more to future students. Joplin challenged others to reach into their pockets and give big.

   The STH website article indicated that a $250,000 donor was inspired by Joplin’s generosity. There is no doubt about it Bill Joplin is a shining example of Eagle Pride at its finest. Without alumni like Joplin the 4500Forever campaign would have no chance at success, and this fine institution would not be able to carry on the motto of “Teach me Goodness, Discipline and Knowledge.”

   Every current and future student will be forever indebted to Joplin for his unmatched generosity.