The WNY Chapter of the Urban Land Institute (ULI) – considered the oldest and largest network of cross-disciplinary real estate and land use experts in the world – has established a scholarship in the memory of Kevin Hays.
Hays was a founding member of ULI Western New York’s Young Leader’s Group, alumnus of the University at Buffalo School of Architecture and Planning, and Director of Development at Savarino Companies in Buffalo, NY. Upon being diagnosed with colon cancer, he became a fervent champion of the fight against the disease. Aside from being on the Buffalo Walk to End Colon Cancer Engagement Committee and the national Never Too Young Advisory Board, Hays founded the nonprofit organization Buffalo Colon Corps.
The scholarship in Hays’ name will be an all-expenses paid opportunity for a UB Real Estate Student to attend the ULI Fall meeting in Dallas, Texas from October 24-27, 2022.
“When Kevin’s colleagues at ULI suggested a scholarship in Kevin’s name, all of us at Savarino were happy to help,” said Sam Savarino, President and Chief Executive Officer of Savarino Companies. “There may be no better way to honor Kevin’s legacy than to provide a deserving student an opportunity to participate in the betterment of their community.”
In 2014, Hays was diagnosed with colorectal cancer at the age of 28. His dream and mission was to help others afflicted with the disease, while helping to ensure that oft-overlooked groups of people were equally considered, informed, diagnosed, and treated. Two groups in particular were disadvantaged communities and those diagnosed under the age of 45. Hays passed away in 2021 at the age of 36, but his legacy is alive and well today thanks to his steadfast determination and commitment to the cause.
To celebrate his cherished colleague and friend, Sam Savarino has announced a $5,000 Challenge Grant on behalf of Savarino Companies, LLC toward an initial scholarship fundraising goal of $10,000. In addition, the First Annual Kevin Hays Scholarship Event will be hosted on May 17, 2022, in the Atrium at 500 Seneca Street in Buffalo, NY. All proceeds from the event will be dedicated to the scholarship fund.
This coming Tuesday, May 17th at 6pm in the Atrium at 500 Seneca, we will be holding the first annual Kevin Hays Memorial Scholarship event, where we will announce this year’s winner of the scholarship. All proceeds from the event will go towards the scholarship.
If you would like to contribute to the Scholarship Fund, please follow these instructions:
- Mail: Please make checks payable to the “ULI Foundation”. Please include “Kevin Hays Memorial Scholarship ULI NY” on the “Memo Line” of the check. Gifts can be credited on the date of the USPS postmark.
ULI Foundation | PO Box 418374 | Boston, MA 02241-8374
- Online: Donations are accepted online by visiting the Foundation webpage and clicking the “Donate” box.
- (Ignore the Total Gift Amount grey box at the top) Be sure to click the ‘Designate your donation to a specific program(s) or National/District Council’ button in the top list of checkbox options under the grey box
- (Ignore the ULI Opportunities Fund amount box) Scroll down. Next to the ‘My District/National Council’ in the option list enter the donation amount then use the dropdown box to select ULI New York
- Scroll down. In the Message text box above Your Information, YOU MUST write that your donation is to support ULI Western New York’s Kevin Hays Memorial Scholarship
- Complete the rest of the information as instructed on the form
Lead image: Photo taken on a bucket list trip that Hays and Savarino took together through Europe