Walter Scott, Jr., 1931-2021
Walter Scott, Jr.

Walter Scott, Jr., one of the true giants in Colorado State University’s history, died in September at the age of 90, leaving a legacy that will be felt by generations of Rams to come.

A 1953 civil engineering alumnus, Scott was driven by a powerful philanthropic impulse to become the largest donor in the University’s history. His giving to CSU through his foundation totals $64.2 million. This extraordinary generosity prompted the dedication in 2016 of the Walter Scott, Jr. College of Engineering, as well as a lead gift for the Suzanne & Walter Scott, Jr. Bioengineering Building and funding for Scott Scholarships for engineering majors.

Scott began a career in his hometown of Omaha, Nebraska, with international construction and engineering firm Peter Kiewit Sons, Inc. (now known as Kiewit). He served as the company’s CEO from 1979-98, earning acclaim as a leader in the industry.

Scott and his wife, Suzanne, were renowned as philanthropists in the Omaha community.

Among his many awards, Scott was named a CSU Honor Alumnus in 1982, and received an honorary doctorate in 2003 and the William E. Morgan Alumni Achievement Award in 2014. He was awarded the Founders Day Medal – CSU’s highest honor – in 2018.

“My job is done. It’s now up to you to make sure my investment lets you do great things.”


Scott often referred to his philanthropy as investments in the future. At the dedication of the college of engineering, he said to its students, “In the case of investing in the students of CSU, I hope my investment helps develop the next generation of leaders­ – those who will do great things for our country. My job is done. It’s now up to you to make sure my investment lets you do great things.”