BELLE GLADE, FLORIDA -- Stetson University, in Deland, Florida, owns
extensive art collection by Modernist painter Oscar Bluemner
(1867-1938) and soon will have a permanent gallery on the Stetson
campus thanks to the generosity of longtime Stetson trustee and
alumna Dolly Hand and her husband, Homer Hand.
The Hands are donating a $1 million lead gift for an art center to be
built between Sampson Hall, home of the university's Art Department,
and the duPont-Ball Library on campus. The university is applying for
grants to raise additional funding needed for construction of the new facility.
The Hands live in Belle Glade, where they own and operate Hand
Enterprises, the management company for their land holdings. They are
active in civic affairs in the Belle Glade/Okeechobee area, and both
are former members of the Palm Beach Community College Board of
Trustees. They have received numerous awards, including the Champion
of Higher Independent Education in Florida (CHIEF) Award from the
Independent Colleges and Universities of Florida in 1996.
Dolly Hand is a 1949 graduate of Stetson's College of Law, which was
located on the DeLand campus until the mid-1950s and is now based in
St. Petersburg. She was the only woman in her class and, at age 20,
was the youngest student ever to complete the law program. Mrs. Hand
has served on the Stetson University Board of Trustees since 1994.
The couple provided permanent funding for the Homer and Dolly Hand
Award for Excellence in Faculty Research, which is given annually to
recognize Stetson faculty members involved in significant research.
They also give to Stetson for student scholarships each year.