When the Templeton Foundation honored Westmont as a “character-building institution,” Cliff Lundberg ’65 took pride in accepting the award. “The recipients were an elite group of schools, and I was honored to represent Westmont,” he says. “Developing character is so central to our mission.”
Were colleges known for the character of their alums and not just their starting salaries, Cliff believes Westmont would receive much greater recognition. He cites the college’s success in producing people with both character and leadership ability as a reason he joined the board of trustees and agreed to chair its development committee.
An economics and business major, Cliff earned an M.B.A. from UCLA’s Anderson Graduate School of Management. For 13 years, he worked in contract administration with Planning Research Corporation. In 1981, he started a new venture in Silicon Valley and then joined with a friend in 1987 to buy a small firm in Florida that assisted the Navy’s anti-submarine warfare efforts.
With the Cold War ending, Cliff applied the company’s technologies to the telecommunications field and exited the defense business. In 1992, Cable & Wireless Marine Ltd. in Britain bought an equity interest in the company, which then acquired a German telecommunications firm. Cliff became president and chief executive officer of General Offshore Corporation, a multinational business specializing in marine operations and telecommunications. He travels around the world overseeing projects such as the underwater installation of fiber-optic cable.
At Westmont, Cliff competed in cross country and tennis and served as captain of the first soccer team. A few years after graduating, he began making gifts to Warrior sports. “Athletics kept me affectionately connected to Westmont,” he explains. “Then a whole new dimension of commitment opened up when I became a trustee.
“I believe every alum has something to contribute to Westmont,” he adds. “We all need to do our part. Every gift—even $25—helps because it increases the percentage of alums who give.
“The number of alums supporting a college is an indication of its quality,” he notes. “Giving to Westmont adds to the value of our diploma.
“Many alums generously support churches and Christian organizations,” Cliff continues. “But more of us need to make Westmont a top priority in our stewardship. The college is an arm of the body of Christ in the world, and it deserves a place in our charitable giving.”
Cliff reports that trustees are leading by example in supporting the college. Last year, the average donation of board members nearly doubled.
For Cliff, Westmont is more than his alma mater—it’s a family tradition. His father, John, is a professor emeritus of music, and his mother, brother, and two sisters are all alums, as is his wife, Diane Johnston Lundberg ’66.
“As alums, Westmont has shaped us and formed some of our deepest friendships,” Cliff notes. “Let’s join together and stretch ourselves by giving back to the college.”