Dinner raises more than $300,000 for Renaissance Scholarships

University Park, Pa. -- Penn State's 34th annual Renaissance Fund dinner has raised the record amount of more than $300,000 to endow scholarships in honor of business and civic leader Lance T. Shaner, this year's Renaissance Fund Honoree. Nearly 450 guests attended the Nov. 4 dinner at the Penn Stater Conference Center Hotel on the University Park campus.

The annual event raises money for Renaissance Fund scholarships, which are awarded to academically talented Penn State students who have great financial need. The dinners honor community leaders, and contributions are used to endow scholarships in their names. Since the Renaissance Fund's inception in 1969, the total endowment has grown to more than $8 million. So far, 407 scholarships have been awarded for the 2010-11 academic year.

The Renaissance Fund announced Shaner as this year’s honoree in late August.

Shaner's extensive career has centered on finance, energy production, investment management, and hospitality. He is president and CEO of State College-based Shaner Hotels, one of the largest hotel owner-operator groups in the nation; and co-founder and chairman of the board of Rex Energy, an independent energy company.

Since moving to State College in 1993, Shaner has been deeply involved with Penn State and the local community. He has served on boards and chaired local fundraising campaigns for such organizations as The Second Mile, the YMCA, and the United Way, and has been a lead donor to Centre Volunteers in Medicine and Easter Seals. His Shaner Group maintains a regional baseball field and sponsors an annual charity golf tournament.

Shaner’s personal philanthropy also has been extensive. He has given to the Renaissance Fund, created a Penn State World Campus scholarship for members of the military, and championed Penn State Intercollegiate Athletics. He has supported the construction or renovation of buildings on the University Park campus and in the State College area, including the University Libraries and the Easter Seals Child Development Center. In recognition of his service, he has received United Way’s Palmer Award for Extraordinary Philanthropy and Habitat for Humanity’s Golden Hammer Award.

For more information about this year's Renaissance Fund Honoree, visit http://live.psu.edu/story/48050 online. To learn more about the Renaissance Fund program, contact Kathy Kurtz in the Office of Annual Giving at 814-863-2052.

Last Updated November 09, 2010