Dave and Deb Heeter, both of whom are graduates of Ball State University, have made a generous commitment of $1 million to support their alma mater.

Mr. Heeter is Executive Vice President for Northwest Bank. He also served as the President and Chief Executive Officer of MutualFirst Financial, Inc. and Chief Executive Officer of MutualBank from 2003 until 2020

“We owe a debt of gratitude to Ball State,” Mr. Heeter said. “Our educations gave us opportunities that have allowed us to give back to our community. We want to make sure that future Cardinals have those same meaningful opportunities.”

Mrs. Heeter added, “It is humbling to significantly give back to our University.”

With their gift, the Heeters will establish a scholarship fund and support the Athletics Department.

The Heeter Family Legacy Scholarship, in support of Teachers College, will honor each of their parents. The scholarship honors Bob and Barbara Heeter as well as Jo Butler, life-long public educators. The Heeters’ daughter, Katie, is also a public educator.  

Furthermore, the scholarship component of the Heeters’ donation qualifies for a dollar-for-dollar match from the George and Frances Ball Foundation through the George and Frances Ball Scholars Program, doubling the impact of the couple’s new scholarship.

The gift to athletics supports the Athletic Director Competitive Excellence Fund, providing discretionary funding for emerging needs within all University sports.

Ball State University President Geoffrey S. Mearns said the Heeters embody the University’s spirit of Beneficence.

“The Ball State community is driven by a higher purpose—to do good for others,” President Mearns said. “That culture exists because of the leadership of people like Dave and Deb.”

Half of the overall gift will come to the University as a bequest from the Heeters’ estate, meaning that the Heeters have included Ball State in their wills.

Mr. and Mrs. Heeter earned bachelor of science degrees from the Miller College of Business in 1983 and have long supported their alma mater through service and philanthropy.

Mr. Heeter joined the Ball State University Foundation Board of Directors in 2014. 

To fund your favorite Ball State programs, contact or visit the Ball State Foundation at bsu.edu/foundation.