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Laurier was an opportunity for Kevin Foley (BBA ’88) to grow, and now, an opportunity to give back

Legacy donor Kevin Foley (BBA ’88) almost didn’t go to Laurier – but he’s sure glad he did!

“I was going to get my Math degree at the University of Waterloo – that was all I wanted!” says the life-long Golden Hawk, who now lives in Philadelphia and works at GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) in Worldwide Business Development. “But at the last minute I chose Laurier as I was unsure where a Math degree would lead."

As a practical young man, who had been working since the age of 13 and was paying his own way through school, Foley chose Laurier’s Business program with the hopes of landing a great job and paying off his debts quickly after graduation.

Foley did indeed land that job. In 1988, he was hired by HJ Heinz in marketing. In time, he moved to SmithKlineBeecham (later to become GlaxoSmithKline) and advanced up the corporate ladder to VP of Marketing for Canada, later relocating to Philadelphia to work at their global headquarters in Worldwide Business Development. Kevin never planned for a career in BD but came to working in mergers and acquisitions. He was recruited to a similar role at Pfizer in 2010, but returned to GSK in 2019, where he is today.

After over thirty years in corporate roles, Foley continues to work hard and enjoy life, spending time with his wife of thirty years and their son. He still plays hockey, like he did back at Laurier in intramurals.

“I was always a slow skater,” he jokes. “But as everyone ages, at least now everyone else is slowing down to my speed!”

Foley thinks back to his time at Laurier quite often, and always with gratitude.

“It was an opportunity to grow, to find out who I was,” he says. “Before Laurier, I didn’t have much confidence, I wasn’t sure I would make it. Laurier built my confidence, challenged who I was, and ultimately this helped a lot in in my career – that and my Business degree.”

“I got involved with things I never thought I would, taking on leadership roles in clubs and in other activities.”

While Foley and his wife have always been engaged in philanthropy, they are particularly committed to Laurier. They have had Laurier in their will for over a decade, and while other causes they support have shifted over time, their giving to Laurier remains.

“Interestingly, my wife was the one who pushed me to include Laurier in our will,” says Foley. “She said to me, 'You liked it there so much, you talk so much about how you enjoyed your Business and History classes and how meaningful that learning was to you, we should support the school.'”

Foley had one misgiving – he was concerned that his money might not make a difference at a "big institution."

"I had a bias to give only to small non-profits directly affecting people in crisis” he says. “But then I thought about how even a small gift can make a big difference to a Laurier student who needs a hand.”

“I wouldn’t have made it through school without awards and scholarships, and certainly wouldn’t be where I am today,” says Foley. “That extra financial support can make a very big difference in the life of a young student.”


If you are interested in making a bequest to Laurier, please contact Cec Joyal, Development Officer, Individual & Legacy Giving, Development & Alumni Relations 519.498.4168 |

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