UAH’s Chuck and Jodie Karr make planned gift to university

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Dr. Chuck Karr and his wife Jodie have set up a planned gift to the university. (UAH)

Dr. Chuck Karr, president of the University of Alabama in Huntsville, and his wife Jodie are giving back to the school and community by setting up an unrestricted planned gift to the university.

The Karrs say that their strong connection to Huntsville is just one of the reasons why they recently announced they are making an initial planned gift of $50,000 to UAH.

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About the Karr’s gift

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The Karrs’ gift will be valuable to the future of UAH. (Jacob Blankenship / Hville Blast)

The planned gift will secure their place in the Richardson Shaver Thrasher Society, which honors those who plan to invest in the future of UAH, and they join the 57 families, 11 of whom just joined this year, to be welcomed into the RST Society.

“UAH has a great mission and there’s a great future ahead for UAH. It’s been a privilege to be a part of that mission and that future. I consider it a worthwhile investment.”

UAH president Dr. Chuck Karr

The Karrs say they’ve also worked to model the importance of giving to their two adult sons, Nate and Noah. Both sons graduated from UA, and both were on the track teams. Nate works for Brasfield and Gorrie as a project manager and just completed work on Huntsville’s Alabama School of Cyber Technology and Engineering. Noah works as a news producer at WBRC-6 in Birmingham.

Building for the future at UAH

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Dr. Karr went from interim president to permanent president last month. (UAH)

Dr. Karr joined UAH as its 10th president (initially as interim president) in December 2021, after retiring from a 26-year career at the University of Alabama, where he served most recently as the dean of the College of Engineering. He was named permanent president in September.

Dr. Karr joined UA first as a part-time instructor in the Engineering Mechanics and Aerospace Engineering departments but quickly rose through the ranks from assistant professor to full professor. He then served as the head of UA’s Aerospace Engineering and Mechanics department, prior to becoming the associate dean for research and graduate studies and later the dean of the COE.

Both Dr. and Mrs. Karr are also UA alumni. Dr. Karr is a three-time graduate of UA, culminating in a Ph.D. in Engineering Mechanics.

What followed for Dr. Karr was a successful career working as a research engineer with the U.S. Bureau of Mines at the Tuscaloosa Research Center. He authored books and journal papers; he won engineering awards; and he presented at conferences.

That passion is evidenced here at UAH by the quick rapport he’s established with the UAH community and beyond. It’s not uncommon to see Dr. Karr conversing with students or riding around campus on a golf cart, ferrying students to class and hearing more about their day.

For the Karrs, now felt like the right time to create their own impact at UAH by making a planned gift. 

“There’s a time when you make a decision of what your legacy is going to be. For Jodie and me, it’s a culmination of years of planning and saving. We aspired to make a planned gift because you never know what the future will hold and we were ready.”

Dr. Chuck Karr, UAH

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Michael Seale
Michael Seale
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