W.B. Riley Society

The W.B. Riley Society was established to honor the lifelong dedication of University of Northwestern donors who are committed to Northwestern's long-term stability through its endowment funds.

Membership in the W.B. Riley Society is offered to individuals or couples who make planned gifts to University of Northwestern and Northwestern Media. In cases where a qualified donor is deceased but is survived by a spouse, the spouse will be given membership. Persons qualify under one or more of the following criteria:

  • Provide for charitable bequests in their wills
  • Make University of Northwestern and Northwestern Media a beneficiary of a trust, insurance policy, property, IRA account, money market account or similar fund
  • Create a charitable gift annuity or some other life income plan agreement
For more information on how you can become a member of the W.B. Riley Society or for information on making a planned gift, please contact Angel Moin, at 651-631-5493 or [email protected].

If you are interested in leaving Northwestern part of your estate and would like to know the wording you should include in your will or trust documents, learn about bequest language.

If you've made a bequest to support University of Northwestern and Northwestern Media in your will, we would like to say thank you and express our appreciation in addition to including you in the W.B. Riley Society. Please tell us about your gift.

  • Members will receive a certificate of membership.
  • New members will be honored at the annual W.B. Riley Society event in the fall

About William Bell Riley
Northwestern was founded in 1902 by Dr. William Bell Riley. Through the years, his vision of educating young people for a vital Christian witness has continued.

Dr. Riley was born in Green County, Indiana, on March 22, 1861. He spent his boyhood in Kentucky where he made his profession of faith at age 17.

His education included Hanover College in Hanover, Indiana (A.B.,1885), and Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky (M.A.,1888). He received honorary degrees from Union University and John Brown University.

Dr. Riley held pastorates in First Baptist Church in Warsaw and First Baptist Church in Carrolton, Kentucky (1884-1887); Tabernacle Church in New Albany, Indiana (1887-1888); First Baptist Church in Bloomington, Illinois (1891-1893); Calvary Baptist Church in Chicago, Illinois (1893-1897); and First Baptist Church in Minneapolis, Minnesota (1897-1947).

Dr. Riley was known nationally as a Bible speaker and was famous for his debates against evolution and modernism. He authored more than 75 books of Bible exposition. He passed away in Minneapolis on December 5, 1947.