J S Murdock UVU Alumni Center Project

George and Mimi Murdock are heading up a project to name the UVU Alumni Center after Joseph Stacy Murdock.

Utah Valley University in Orem, UT recently purchased George and Mimi Murdock's home for use as an Alumni Center.

Alumni Center Photo

George and Mimi are working on a fundraiser to acquire the Naming Rights of the Alumni Center in honor of Joseph Stacy Murdock.

Here is a Press Release that they put together:

Press Release: December 3, 2012
Re: Utah Valley University acquires Murdock Estate to be named:
The Joseph Stacy Murdock Alumni Center

Utah Valley University has acquired a large home and 3-acre estate in Orem, Utah adjacent to the University to serve as the school’s Alumni Center. Former owners, George & Mimi Murdock, residents of Las Vegas and Midway, are acquiring the Naming Rights after which it will be called The Joseph Stacy Murdock Alumni Center. George’s 2nd Great Grandfather, Joseph, was an early pioneer and prominent leader in Heber Valley. George & Mimi have donated 50% of the Naming Rights fees and look to the thousands of JSM descendants for the remaining $175,000 dollars.

News releases, social media and word-of-mouth will alert descendants about this important and worthwhile Naming Project. The Murdocks are hosting a Murdock Cousins’ Christmas Open House, Thurs., Dec 13th and a summer “Peace Treaty BBQ” August 3, 2013 at the Murdock Center. A Facebook page has been set up in the name of Joseph Stacy Murdock. The Joseph Stacy Murdock website www.JSMurdock.org hosted by Alan Humpherys, a descendant, offers the excellent biography “The Life & Times of Joseph Stacy Murdock”. Photos of the home are available on the UVU website: www.UVU.edu

All attending the Open House will be greeted by Murdock cousins, including Vernon Murdock, a great-grandson and famous artist/historian who resembles his venerable ancestor. This promises to be a festive kick-off event for the Naming Project and will assist in establishing the JSM Family Organization and the JSM/UVU Scholarship Endowment Fund.

“We are excited to partner with UVU in naming the new Alumni Center after our noble ancestor who did so much to help settle these mountain valleys. He was called as the first Presiding Bishop of the LDS Church in Heber Valley, served as a territorial legislator and negotiated a lasting peace with the Ute Indian Chiefs, ending the Black Hawk War in Northern Utah”, George explained.

Attendees of the Murdock Cousins’ Christmas Open House, for all descendants of Joseph Stacy Murdock, will tour the home which is beautifully decorated for Christmas. It is hoped many ‘cousins’ will come to enjoy the home and grounds and become a part of this important project to raise funds for the naming rights of the Murdock Alumni Center.

A Joseph Stacy Murdock Family Organization is being established for family historical work and UVU scholarships. Committees are being formed to compile a list of descendants and plan future events. Descendants should email contact info to: MimiMurdock@gmail.com

A non-profit, tax-deductible donation towards the Naming Rights Fund may be made by check to: UVU Foundation--800 West University Parkway, MS 111 Orem, Utah 84058
Memo line: Murdock Alumni Center Naming Rights
Or, by Credit Card online to: www.Donate.SupportUvu.org/Murdock-Center
Donors will receive a receipt for their tax-deductible donation.

In 2008 a group of Heber citizens including members of the Sons of the Utah Pioneers and descendants of Joseph Stacy Murdock sponsored a special monument event in Heber to commemorate the ending of the Black Hawk War with a BBQ - just like Joseph did with the Ute tribe in August 1867. A beautiful sandstone monument was unveiled with pictures of Joseph and Chief Tabby and an explanation of the historic event which took place at that very location. The monument stands on the corner of 300 N. 100 E. in Heber City and was donated by Delta Stone, owned by the Hicken family, descendants of Joseph Stacy Murdock.

“Murdock Cousins’ Christmas Open House”
UVU Alumni Center
December 13, 2012 Thursday
519 West 1200 South
Orem, UT 84058
Anytime between 5:30 – 8:00 pm
Parking at the UVU building across the street directly north of the Alumni Center.


July 12, 2019

Dear Donor –

We wish we could personally thank each of you for joining us in supporting the goal to name our former home and estate the Joseph Stacy Murdock Alumni Center on the campus of Utah Valley University in Orem, UT.

The original agreement for the Naming Rights included a deadline date of December 2015. When we realized we were not able to raise the total required amount remaining ($175,000), we received verbal permission by UVU executives in 2015 to continue to seek for donations and that we would be notified if a future deadline date needed to be set. We continued to encourage donations but we did not get the Naming Rights Agreement Extension approval in writing.

We recently received surprising information (see back of this letter) that reflected the donations received since our large gift to initiate the Naming Rights. We immediately set an appointment with a UVU Executive VP. Since we had just sold a property, we were prepared to write a check to finally complete the Naming Rights but were shocked to learn that ALL funds previously donated for that purpose were used for student scholarships.

The new President and executive team did not know about the verbal permission granted and, understandably, do not recognize a verbal agreement. The previous executives who granted verbal permission are no longer employed by the school.

We were additionally shocked to be informed that our former home, guest house and two-acre estate will NOT be the Alumni Center in approximately one – two years because the school plans to build a large structure on campus for that purpose. The home may be used as the UVU President's home or it may eventually be torn down.

The cost of Naming Rights for any building on the UVU campus has suddenly increased dramatically. Obviously, the school is anticipating donations that far exceed anything we could ever consider. The project is now officially closed.

Thank you, again, for your willingness to honor our amazing pioneer ancestor. Perhaps we can best show our esteem for his example by living by his stellar attributes of character instead of naming a building at a school after him. We trust you have been blessed for your generosity even though you unknowingly supported UVU students in the form of scholarships.


George and Mimi Murdock