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Hosting with Houston Hospitality: Lindley and Lanier Families Throw 75th Anniversary Bash

Houston House

The parties were everywhere—parks and poolside, community centers, and a gala at Warner Bros. Studios—to celebrate Pepperdine's 75th anniversary year. Waves alumni chapters organized most of them, gathering fellow graduates and families for festive reunions with classmates and friends. And then there was Houston, where the Lindleys and Laniers—both Seaver families—marked Pepperdine's milestone with unbridled Texas hospitality.

Kim and Don Lindley began their relationship with Pepperdine just four years ago when their twin daughters Alanna and Evanne enrolled at Seaver College. But as residents of the Lone Star State, whose motto is simply "friendship," the Houstonians had no trouble drawing from their Texas roots to start changing lives at Pepperdine.

The Lindleys were inspired to join the Seaver Parents Council and served one year as national co-chairs of the council's executive board. "By volunteering on Pepperdine's behalf, Don and I immediately felt more connected to Pepperdine," said Kim. "We have often told other parents that it seems as if our daughters are just 100 miles away!"

Houston Meet

As their family's engagement with Seaver grew, so did their commitment to its vision, inspiring them to support the Campaign for Pepperdine and Seaver College, as well as Kim's decision to join Seaver's campaign committee. Learning more about Pepperdine from the "inside, out," as Kim puts it, ignited their enthusiasm to build relationships with others who also love the University.

"When Sara Jackson asked if I would consider joining the campaign with such a lofty goal, I was a bit intimidated," Kim recalled. "However, I knew one thing for certain: great things are happening in Malibu and across the globe as a result of Pepperdine's mission and purpose."

In building these relationships, the Lindleys organized last May the Houston Waves 75th anniversary party and barbeque. Eager to rally the abundance of Waves in the Houston area, Kim and Don hoped to support the campaign by gathering prospective and current students, alumni, parents, and friends from all of Pepperdine's schools to celebrate the University's historic achievement.

Kim and Don soon were connected to Pepperdine ambassadors Becky and Mark Lanier, parents of Seaver alumnae Grace and Rachel. Mark, a respected attorney, has long been an advocate for aspiring students in the legal field, and the couple in recent years has supported the School of Law with pacesetting gifts to the Ken Starr Excellence Fund and the William H. Webster Chair in Dispute Resolution. At his firm, Mark also has provided summer clerkships to Pepperdine's law students and hired a number of freshly-minted graduates to work in his offices around the country.

Becky and Mark partnered with the Lindleys to host the signature event at their locally celebrated Lanier Estate Village, a Cotswold-area village featuring a fifth-century Cappadocian stone chapel and the Lanier Theological Library, one of the world's largest private religious studies libraries. As a result, the celebration had a capacity crowd with more than 200 guests in attendance. "President Benton challenged all of us to ‘stand' for Pepperdine, and that is exactly what the Laniers did," said Kim. "Becky and Mark were gracious hosts, and because of their generous support, we were able to bring the Campaign for Pepperdine to Houston."

As the campaign continues, the Lindleys and Laniers remain committed as champions for Pepperdine and its vision to transform exceptional students. "If each of us purposes in our heart to spend our time and hard-earned dollars on something truly meaningful, we can touch the future and change lives," said Kim. "I cannot imagine a better place to do that than Pepperdine."