Leaving a Legacy: Dennis and Theresa Brust

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Dennis Brust's own financial situation and the fact that Colorado State University provided an excellent education to help him with a great career in agriculture gave him the idea to help future students.

Dennis came to CSU from Fort Morgan, Colo., on a full-ride football scholarship, but shortly into his ball-playing career he was injured to the point that he had to give up the game and concentrate on his education. What Dennis didn't do was give up on his college career, and he worked diligently to put himself through school. Dennis says the strain of putting himself through college is what inspired him the most to help other struggling students.

Dennis and his wife, Theresa, were high school sweethearts and were married between Dennis' junior and senior years of college. After receiving a degree in agronomy, he moved on to a 32-year career in the agricultural chemical industry. He also had the opportunity to travel internationally, which gave him a global view of agriculture and greatly increased his appreciation for the business.

Theresa kept busy with her passion for dance and still owns a studio that houses a dance center, gymnastics academy, and theaters for various productions. They have three daughters, Debby, Diane, and Danelle, and two grandchildren. Dennis and Theresa wanted to retire in the mountains, so they moved to Steamboat Springs where they purchased their retirement home on the Elk River. Dennis has done a lot of work improving their property. He hired a river hydrologist to refurbish the river habitat, he is involved in reforestation, and he has a tree service, excavating company, and a snow removal service. And if that isn't enough, Dennis and Theresa keep just as busy with their hobbies. Dennis likes to hunt and fish, and the couple enjoys snowmobiling, riding motorcycles and skiing.

Dennis and Theresa's planned gift is as varied as their lives. The Brusts' charitable remainder trust is designated to three areas – agricultural sciences, athletics, and natural resources — all in the form of scholarships. Cash funds allocated to Colorado State University, estimated at approximately $250,000, are to be divided equally among the three scholarships. The agricultural sciences scholarship will provide support for a graduate-level student; the natural resources scholarship will provide support for a student in the Warner College's Department of Fish, Wildlife and Conservation Biology; and the athletics scholarship will provide support for a student-athlete.

Dennis' philosophy on giving is simple. "Anyone who has had success because they've been helped by others should give back," he says. The Brusts way of living certainly exemplifies giving back!