Paullus Gift Funds Three New Scholarships



Dec. 4, 2006 – The late James Harold Paullus and his late wife Lenore Osborne Paullus have generously donated $1 million to Southeast Missouri State University through a charitable bequest.  The gift has established three scholarships to benefit students majoring in biology, agriculture and home economics.

“This significant gift is one of the largest individual donations the University has received, and it will benefit scores of students in the years ahead,” said Wayne Smith, vice president of University Advancement and executive director of the Foundation. “The devotion and generosity of alumni and friends of the University is truly gratifying, and we are grateful to the Paullus family for their support of our academic programs.”

Paullus graduated from Southeast in 1930 with a bachelor of science degree in education.  After teaching in Fredericktown and Crystal City, Mo., he gave up his role as an educator to focus on entomological research with Del Monte, the University of Illinois and other organizations.  According to Carter Dunkin, a nephew who lives in St. Louis, Mr. Paullus maintained an infectious enthusiasm for learning throughout his life.

“He always had a joy of discovery that seemed undiminished even as he neared his second retirement,” Dunkin said.  “No matter how much he knew about insects, or any other subject, for that matter, he reveled in adding anything to his knowledge.

“This donation reflects the Paulluses’ desire to assist young people who also strive to learn,” Dunkin continued.  “They appreciated the value of their time in Cape Girardeau and felt it played an important role in the success and happiness they experienced over the rest of their lives.”

By establishing the James Harold Paullus Biological Sciences Scholarship Fund and the James Harold Paullus Agricultural Scholarship Fund, Mr. Paullus sought to ensure continual improvements in the study of agriculture and entomology. 

The Lenore Osborne Paullus Home Economics Scholarship Fund is designed to go to students in human environmental studies, who also show achievement in both literature and history. According to Jane Stacy, director of Alumni Services and Development, this challenging three-part prerequisite is a testament to the very nature of Mrs. Paullus. 

“Lenore was an intelligent, well-rounded woman who shared her husband’s zest for learning throughout her life,” said Stacy. “The establishment of this scholarship will help pass her strong value of education to students for generations to come.” 

Mrs. Paullus attended Southeast for two years in the early 1930s.  She later transferred to the University of Missouri–Columbia to finish her degree.  Both Mr. and Mrs. Paullus grew up in southeastern Missouri; together, they spent much of their adult lives in Rochelle, Ill., near Rockford. 

Mr. Paullus passed away in 1989 at the age of 79, after which Mrs. Paullus moved to Columbia, Mo., to be near relatives.  Mrs. Paullus remained active right up until her death in late 2005 at the age of 92.


A state-assisted institution, Southeast Missouri State University receives only a portion of its funding from state revenue, tuition and auxiliaries. The remainder is raised by the Southeast Missouri University Foundation in the form of private gifts by alumni and friends who believe in bringing students a high-quality education that ensures students experience success in our global society.

Since its founding in 1983, the University Foundation has worked diligently to raise and manage funds for the betterment of Southeast Missouri State University and its students.  The funds support scholarships, financial aid, faculty advancement, technological upgrades and facility improvements.

For more information on the Foundation and ways to support Southeast, visit