University News

UCLA Athletics receives $2 million gift to support softball

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The UCLA Department of Athletics has announced a generous commitment of $2 million from longtime university benefactors Jim and Phyllis Easton that will be used to support improvements, including a new scoreboard, to Easton Stadium, the on-campus home of UCLA’s 11-time NCAA national champion softball program.

In appreciation of the Eastons’ generosity, the new scoreboard will prominently display the Easton name.

“Few people have had more of an impact upon both the athletic and campus communities here at UCLA than Jim and Phyllis Easton,” said Director of Athletics Dan Guerrero. “From the building of Easton Sports into an athletic equipment empire to their tireless dedication to philanthropy, the scope of the Eastons’ contributions reaches well beyond school and department walls. The Eastons have had a direct impact on individual lives, and their generosity and leadership is quite simply an inspiration. I would like to thank both of them for their continued dedication to UCLA and, more specifically, our historic softball program.”

Jim Easton, a UCLA graduate with a degree in engineering, and his wife, Phyllis, have been generous supporters of UCLA Athletics and entities across the university for many years, including the David Geffen School of Medicine, UCLA Anderson School of Management, and the Henry Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Science.

In 2014, Jim Easton, who has the distinction of serving on the International Olympic Committee and was mayor of the Olympic Athletes Village at UCLA during the 1984 Los Angeles Olympic Games, was awarded the UCLA Medal of Honor — the university’s highest honor bestowed on an individual for extraordinary achievement.

“It is an honor and pleasure to continue our support of UCLA Athletics with a new scoreboard and improvements at Easton Stadium…home of the top collegiate softball program in the country,” said Jim Easton. “We celebrate their success. Go Bruins!”

“Easton Stadium, tucked away on the UCLA campus and enjoyed by fans and players for over 20 years, is a jewel steeped in the tradition of excellence,” said Phyllis Easton. “We are excited and proud to support women’s softball with this gift to UCLA Athletics.”

This transformative gift from the Eastons represents significant support for UCLA Softball. Upon securing this gift, UCLA has partnered with Daktronics to design, manufacture and install an integrated video display for Easton Stadium. It is anticipated that the new scoreboard will be installed prior to the UCLA versus Stanford game on April 9.

The new LED video display will feature 15HD pixel layout and measure nearly 14.5 feet high and more than 26.5 feet wide. It will incorporate excellent image clarity and contrast with wide angle visibility to appeal to every seat in the stadium.

“Jim and Phyllis Easton have supported UCLA Softball throughout the history of our program,” said softball head coach Kelly Inouye-Perez. “It was the Easton family that provided the funding to transform a field into a stadium in the mid-90’s. Today, we thank Jim and Phyllis for another generous donation. The video scoreboard will allow us to share our tradition and keep us in the forefront of college softball.”

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