Steve and Nancy Sheetz Give Gift to Penn State Altoona

ALTOONA, Pa. -- Sheetz Inc. Chairman Stephen G. Sheetz and his wife, Nancy, have made another gift commitment to Penn State Altoona, this time to honor the lives of their longtime friends and fellow Penn State volunteers William J. and Judith D. Rossman, the university reported.

At the request of the donors, Penn State Altoona’s entrepreneurial studies program will be named Rossman Park, and be the focal point of an area adjacent to the Sheetz Center for Entrepreneurial Excellence along Eleventh Avenue in downtown Altoona.

"Bill and Judy Rossman have been such an integral part of this community for a very long time," Steve Sheetz said in a statement.

"They have always loved bringing people together and creating an environment where everyone feels comfortable," Nancy Sheetz added. "We believe Rossman Park’s very pleasant and inviting setting reflects the endearing qualities that so many have found in Bill and Judy over the years."

With a meticulous environmental design for multi-season use, Rossman Park will include tables, chairs, benches and bicycle racks, accommodating visitors who wish to enjoy the pleasant surroundings. The park will be distinguished by a variety of shade trees and native shrubs and flowers. As a community resource, the park also will be outfitted with wireless service, along with lighting and state-of-the-art security technology to help ensure public safety.

Rossman Park will complement the nearby Sheetz Center for Entrepreneurial Excellence, named in honor of Steve and Nancy Sheetz for their $2.5 million gift announced in 2009 -- the largest gift in Penn State Altoona’s history-- to transform entrepreneurial studies at the campus.

In June 2010, the couple was honored as Penn State Philanthropists of the Year. The award recognizes donors who have demonstrated exceptional generosity in the promotion and support of the university. Steve Sheetz is a 1969 Penn State graduate.

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