Edward Anchel

1939 – 2021

Smeal alumnus Edward Anchel was passionate about empowering future generations of students to make the most of their Penn State education.

In 2006, Anchel and his wife Judith established the Edward and Judith Anchel Trustee Scholarship with a $1 million gift to the University. They also made a $1.5 million estate commitment to endow the Edward and Judith Anchel Undergraduate Scholarship in Business.

Previously, they created the Jonas H. Anchel Professorship in Business Administration, which is currently held by marketing professor Lisa Bolton.

“There are a lot of talented students with enormous potential who want to go to Penn State,” Anchel said when the scholarship was created. “(We) want to help make sure that everyone who wants to go to Penn State has the financial means to do so.”

Judith Anchel died in December 2020. Edward Anchel died nine months later.

To date, there have been nearly 350 awards and more than $1 million given from the Anchels’ Trustee Scholarship to support students with financial need.

“As the youngest child of a single mother, I am grateful to the Anchels, whose support has been instrumental in allowing me to pursue my dream of graduating from Penn State,” says Sophia Rallis, one of more than a dozen current recipients of the Trustee Scholarship.

Edward Anchel was deeply devoted to Penn State and Smeal. He was a founding member and honorary chair of Smeal’s Board of Visitors, past president of the Penn State Alumni Association, a Presidential Counselor, and chair of Smeal’s Grand Destiny fundraising campaign. He also served on the Smeal Alumni Society Board, the Penn State National Development Council, and was a Wall Street Initiative Volunteer Leader.

Among his many accolades, Anchel received the Alumni Fellow Award in 1984 and the Distinguished Alumni Award in 1998.

Anchel was proud to see his Penn State roots grow as his son, David ’90, stepchildren Allison Gruber Fiedel ’88 Lib and Steven Gruber ’90 H&HD, and grandchildren Alexis Lightner ’16 Com and Sara Gruber ’19 Lib became Penn State graduates. Two other grandchildren are currently enrolled.

Richard Trumka

1949 – 2021

U.S. President Joe Biden called Smeal College of Business alumnus Richard Trumka “a fierce and forceful champion for the dignity of the American worker.”

A third-generation coal miner, Trumka worked in the mines while attending college. He earned a degree in Accounting in 1971 and a law degree from Villanova University School of Law in 1974.

True to his working-class roots, Trumka joined United Mine Workers of America (UMWA) as a staff attorney in 1974. In 1982, he became the youngest person to be elected UMWA president.

Trumka joined the 12.5-million member AFL-CIO as secretary-treasurer in 1995 and was elected president in 2009. He remained in the role until his death on August 5, 2021.

“Richard Trumka embodied the hard work, grit, and determination that are the hallmarks of Penn State graduates,” says Dean Charles H. Whiteman.

Trumka once credited his parents’ love of learning and his time at Penn State for his success, saying the University introduced him to different people, different opinions, and different cultures. Wanting to pass this experience on to others, he and his wife Barbara created the Trumka Family Trustee Scholarship in 2013.

Following his death, more than $270,000 in memorial contributions were made to the scholarship. “There’s no better legacy for a working-class kid like Richard Trumka than to create that same opportunity for others,” Whiteman said.