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The Campaign for Colonial Williamsburg

Donor Stories

Randy and Ouida Gwinn

Randy and Ouida Gwinn

Ouida and Randy Gwinn were still newlyweds when they fell in love with Colonial Williamsburg more than 40 years ago.

It all started with a getaway vacation that left them completely smitten – with each other, and with the history and hospitality of Colonial Williamsburg. They have visited frequently ever since, including at Christmas, an annual tradition that began for the couple in 2004.

“We’ve had so many wonderful times here,” Ouida said. “We want to give back so that future generations can enjoy Colonial Williamsburg as we have.”

In 2012, the Gwinns made a commitment to help ensure Colonial Williamsburg’s future. They joined the nearly 1,700 friends who currently have bequests benefitting the Foundation in their estate plan.

“We are delighted to help prepare the Foundation to meet the opportunities that lie ahead,” Randy said.

As Ken Wolfe, director of Planned Giving, explained, gifts like the Gwinns’ are the single-most important factor in growing Colonial Williamsburg’s endowment. From the Fifes and Drums to the Historic Trades – everything people love about this place relies on support from the endowment. “We are so grateful for both the generosity and long-term vision of friends like the Gwinns.”

Over the years of visiting Williamsburg, the couple has appreciated the many changes that have taken place – as well as the things that have remained the same.

Most important to them are the lasting friendships they have developed here. Their yearly Christmas visits center around a circle of friends who gather to share the festivities of the season. It’s a circle of friends, they said, that includes Colonial Williamsburg staff and guests alike.

“The doormen at the Lodge recognize us all and welcome us home,” said Randy. “It’s like one big family.”