Kennesaw State announces Katherine Scott Rehearsal Hall Endowment

KENNESAW, Ga. | Jun 1, 2017

Donor’s $500,000 gift benefits School of Music’s Bailey Center

Katherine Scott
From left, School of Music Director Stephen Plate, Katherine Scott, and College of the Arts Dean Patty Poulter.

Encouraged at an early age by her mother, Katherine Scott followed her passion for music and the arts – and it led her to donate $500,000 to Kennesaw State University’s School of Music. By establishing the Katherine Scott Rehearsal Hall Endowment, she hopes her generous gift will give students greater access to creating music and transforming their lives for the better.

Growing up in Indiana, Scott studied piano and voice with her sister. She credits that love of music and the arts with her decision to endow the rehearsal hall. Things began to crystallize during a visit to KSU last summer for the Star-Spangled Spectacular on the Kennesaw Campus Green.

“I came for a picnic on the grass and to listen to the band and orchestra,” said Scott, who lives in Buckhead. “We stayed to watch the fireworks later, and I just loved being here. It was then I knew I wanted to do something for Kennesaw State’s music students, and so I followed my passion.”

“I took years of piano as a young girl along with my sister, and the love of music always stayed with me,” Scott said, standing beside one of two enormous Steinway & Sons concert grand pianos in the Dr. Bobbie Bailey and Family Performance Center.

“I love pianos, and these Steinways are so special they’re like beautiful pieces of art,” she said during a special naming ceremony on the Bailey stage as pianist Robert Henry played the magnificent instrument. “This is, indeed, a special day for me.”

Scott, who previously lived in La Jolla, Calif., a seaside community within the city of San Diego, returned to the Atlanta area following the death of her husband of 48 years, Charles “Red” Scott, who passed away in 2013. The couple lived in Atlanta when he served as president and chief executive officer of The Actava Group (Fuqua Industries). They have two sons, Patrick and Kelly, and several grandchildren.

During their time in California, the Scotts donated to the San Diego Zoo and local Salvation Army and numerous other community causes. “Red” Scott also served as chairman of the San Diego Council of Boy Scouts of America and the successful businessman was an Horatio Alger Award recipient.

Scott recalled her husband’s hardscrabble years growing up in Paris, Texas, during the Great Depression. His grit and determination pushed him forward and never let him forget to help the less fortunate in life.

“My husband started with nothing, worked very hard and became a success. He always said how much better it is to give than to receive. But I have the best of both worlds, because now I get to give this to you – and to receive so much more from you in return.”

College of the Arts Dean Patty Poulter thanked Scott for her generous gift. “A gift like yours, Kathy, will help our students attain their dreams of becoming musicians, teachers or even composers. I cannot tell you how much we appreciate this.”

Scott’s gift will provide financial support for the School of Music’s programs, upkeep of the 3,600-square-foot rehearsal space in the Center and help to maintain the school’s 47 Steinways. Kennesaw State has been classified as an All-Steinway School since 2007.

In recognition of her endowment, the College of the Arts named the Center’s rehearsal hall in her honor.

School of Music Director Stephen W. Plate praised Scott for her support for “one of the busiest rooms on our entire campus.”

“This hall is used for student rehearsals, including the KSU band, orchestra, chamber musicians, and opera students – and when someone isn’t rehearsing in it, it is used as a classroom,” Plate said.

During the past year, more than 1,200 music majors and almost 90 faculty and professional staff members booked sessions in the rehearsal facilities.

“Our faculty and staff members are devoted to the development of music education, performance and scholarship,” said Plate. “Kathy, your gift will change lives around here for a long, long time.

The Katherine Scott Rehearsal Hall is adjacent to the back-of-house areas of the Aubrey B. and Jack E. Morgan, Sr. Concert Hall. Morgan Hall, the primary performance space for the School of Music’s more than 150 concerts, recitals and events per year, is a single-level, 624-seat concert hall located within the Bailey Performance Center.

Scott Hall is sonically isolated from the rest of the building through a series of acoustic deadening sound-locks, but is integrated with the facility’s audio recording and communications infrastructure allowing production tasks and capabilities to be extended to this space for a variety of uses.

For performances and events, the rehearsal hall is often used as either a large ensemble holding area, or as a separate performance space, classroom or exhibit hall for peripheral activities. The space is equipped with tiered risers allowing seating for up to 60 individuals.

— Robert S. Godlewski

Photos by Lauren Lopez de Azua

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A leader in innovative teaching and learning, Kennesaw State University offers undergraduate, graduate and doctoral degrees to its more than 45,000 students. Kennesaw State is a member of the University System of Georgia with 11 academic colleges. The university’s vibrant campus culture, diverse population, strong global ties and entrepreneurial spirit draw students from throughout the country and the world. Kennesaw State is a Carnegie-designated doctoral research institution (R2), placing it among an elite group of only 7 percent of U.S. colleges and universities with an R1 or R2 status. For more information, visit