Thanks a million: Ward gets $1 million gift

Jim and Zibbie Ferrell are giving a $1 million gift to support the Bishop Ward Endowment Fund. Pic- tured here during the evening prayer ceremony on Feb. 29, where the Ferrells made the announce- ment, are: (front row, from left) junior Clarissa Fierro-Cheda, sophomore Karla Sepulveda, Zibbie Ferrell, junior Theresa Collins; (back row, from left) Jim Ferrell, Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann, and junior Xavier Tucker.

by Jessica Langdon
jessica.langdon@theleaven.org

KANSAS CITY, Kan. — When Jim Ferrell first saw the kind of work Bishop Ward High School here does, he liked what he saw.

So much so, in fact, he was happy to give when Ward president Father Michael Hermes asked for help in making a new science room a reality.

“We were impressed with the school, the way it’s run, the mission behind it, the kids who were going there,” said Ferrell. “And we maintained a relationship after that.”

That relationship has led to what Bishop Ward calls a “historic” gift, which nearly doubles the school’s current endowment.

Bishop Ward High School announced this month that Jim and Zibbie Ferrell of Ferrell Gas and Ferrell Capital are giving a gift of $1 million to support the endowment fund.

The Bishop Ward endowment fund is part of the Catholic Foundation of Northeast Kansas and is important to the future of providing Catholic, college-prep education to students in Wyandotte County.

Ferrell said the gift is an investment in “education and values.”

Everyone at Ward is committed to two things, he explained. First, they are providing a college-preparatory education, an opportunity some of the students might not otherwise have. Second, in working with students, the administration and faculty there strive “to increase their faith and to develop the Catholic values in the kids that the people who are there value so much.”

The Ferrells’ generosity has already made an impact on hundreds of students at Bishop Ward, and the school is thrilled that their support will continue to touch lives for many years to come.

“We are so grateful to the Ferrell family for their generosity to our school,” said Father Hermes. “Their support inspires all of us to continue to work hard to do our best in offering a quality Catholic-Christian formation program and a college-preparatory education.”

In this school, Ferrell sees people who are committed to helping children succeed, utilizing a type of education that offers students ways to maximize their talents.

“It’s teaching values and infusing kids with a value system that’s been proven for centuries,” added Ferrell.

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