Don Flournoy is a professor in the School of Media Arts and Studies and a committed philanthropist to the region.

Photographer: Emily Martin

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Professor serves as committee member for United Appeal

Over the course of his life, Don Flournoy has held many titles, including director, dean, advisor, editor and professor. He has worked in developing countries in Africa, Asia and in Central Europe, been a consultant to both governmental and non-governmental organizations, and served on advising boards to think tanks. So, it is no surprise that Flournoy has gained yet another title: committee member of United Appeal for Athens County.

“United Appeal represents a cross-section of constituencies that make up our local community,” said Flournoy of the fundraising agency. “I appreciate the fact that the University makes a special effort to support United Appeal. We can make a pledge and ask that the University deduct a portion of that money from our paychecks month-by month. We also have the option of choosing which of the UA organizations we most want to support.”

Flournoy came to Ohio University as the Dean of University College in 1971. He was dean for 10 years, after which he served as director of special projects at the Center for International Studies. In 1984, he assumed full-time responsibilities as a professor in the School of Telecommunications, now the School of Media Arts and Studies.  

While he could not say how many years he has been donating to United Appeal, he said he was supporting the organization when it was called United Way.

“My wife and I are very much interested in fostering a healthy community, and a healthy community is one where its members choose share their resources and talents in whatever ways they can,” said Flournoy. “Athens is such a caring community.”

Contributing through a yearly donation or an established tithe is not the only way Flournoy gives back to the community. As a farmer, he donates his produce to such groups as the Athens County Food Pantry, giving extra when possible in times of community need.

Flournoy’s philanthropy stems, in part, from observations made while working abroad. 

“It’s clear that if you’re an American citizen, you are much better off in terms of getting good health care and having access to good food,” he said. “It makes you aware of the need to support programs and people who are working every day to insure an element of equity and social justice.”

To make a donation to United Appeal for Athens County, visit their website or fill out the pledge card placed in your office mailbox on Oct. 29 to sign up to have personally determined portion of your Ohio University paychecks automatically go to United Appeal or to make a one-time donation.

All donors, regardless of amount given, will receive a United Appeal T-shirt. Those who give $50 or more will also receive a free pass to the Athena Cinema.

To donate, return your pledge card through Interoffice Mail to Cutler Hall, room 108 in the envelope provided. If you did not receive a pledge card, please contact Becky Watts (, and she will send one to you.