Skip to Content (Press Enter)

Honoring a Steadfast Friend

Remembering William J. McGarvey Jr., 1921-2015
Share This:

UPDATE: A celebration of William McGarvey’s life is planned for 11 a.m. Friday, June 26, at the Muckenthaler Cultural Center in Fullerton. 

Longtime Cal State Fullerton donor and volunteer William J. McGarvey Jr., 93, died this morning (May 14) at his home in Fullerton.

McGarvey was founding president of Friends of the College, the University’s earliest philanthropic effort, served for decades on the former University Advisory Board and, in 1994, was awarded the President’s Medallion. He went on to serve on the CSF Philanthropic Foundation Board of Governors.

The William J. McGarvey Family Dance Studio in the Clayes Performing Arts Center is named in his honor and was the site of a 90th birthday party in 2011 celebrating his wide-ranging involvement with the university.

He was a member of President’s Associates, Friends of the Fullerton Arboretum and Titan Athletic Foundation, and brought his business acumen to bear on behalf of the University as a founding member of the Titan Sports Complex Campaign and El Dorado Ranch Preservation Committee. He also served on the planning committee for the University’s 50th anniversary celebration and as honorary chair of the gala celebration committee for the grand opening of the Clayes Performing Arts Center. He chaired the CSU Chancellor’s Advisory Council (1970-74).

McGarvey was chairman of the board of the former McGarvey-Clark Realty Inc. and later director of community relations for Anderson, Lynn & Cottrell, CPAs Inc. He was accorded many community honors, including being named Fullerton’s “Man of the Year” and “Mr. Education.”

He is survived by his sons, William and Patrick ’85; grandsons, William and Matthew; and granddaughters, Meghan and Molly. He was preceded in death by his wife, Virginia, in whose name a scholarship was established by ASI for CSUF students.