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06/24/2011

Professor Emeritus Makes Generous Gift to Support Winthrop’s D.B. Johnson Memorial Organ

Quick Facts

 The D.B. Johnson Memorial Organ is considered one of the most historic instruments in the Southeast.
 Lowry served as curator of the Organ Restoration Campaign.

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David Lowry
ROCK HILL, S.C. - David Lowry, professor emeritus of music and former campus organist at Winthrop, has committed a $150,000 estate gift to establish the David M. Lowry Organ Performance Endowed Fund.

The fund will provide discretionary funds primarily for the maintenance and restoration of the D.B. Johnson Memorial Organ and also to fund initiatives within the Department of Music related to organ performance, including faculty and student-related travel expenses.

"When I came to Winthrop in 1965, I was thinking it would be a good job for a couple of years. As I kept drawing in fine students and establishing a career, all of a sudden 46 years passed, and I owe Winthrop University much for many of my successes," said Lowry, who teaches part time at Winthrop.

Lowry served as the curator of the Organ Restoration Campaign, which raised funds to restore the D.B. Johnson Memorial Organ, considered one of the most historic instruments in the Southeast. The organ, installed in 1955 in Byrnes Auditorium, was sent to the Letourneau Organ Company in Saint-Hyacinthe, Quebec, Canada, in May 2007 for a complete restoration.

"Dr. Lowry has been a major supporter of the Aeolian-Skinner organ. As a result of his professional direction, the renovation project was a great success, and has provided a top-quality instrument to serve Winthrop for decades to come," said Don Rogers, chair of the Department of Music.

Winthrop's former college organist now works as the parish musician for the Church of the Good Shepherd in Columbia, S.C.

Lowry holds a bachelor's of music from Baldwin-Wallace College in Cleveland, a master's of sacred music from Union Theological Seminary of New York and a doctorate of musical arts from the University of North Texas-Denton. During his career, he has played in organ recitals across the United States and Europe.

He is a past president of the Association of Anglican Musicians. He served on the board of the Royal School of Church Music in America from 1981-2001. In 2002, the RSCM bestowed on Lowry the award HonRSCM in a festival at St. Asaph Cathedral in Wales. Lowry also is the co-founder and the music director/conductor of the York County Choral Society, founded 1981.

For more information on making a gift to Winthrop, contact the Office of Development at 803/323-2150.

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