Robert Jones and Dixie Savio-Jones

DU Investments Allow Couple to Pursue Passions

Bob Jones and Dixie Savio-Jones

Bob Jones (BFA ’52) and Dixie Savio-Jones established gifts with DU that provide them with lifetime income, while also allowing them to pursue their passions and benefit future generations of students.

Robert "Bob" Jones (BFA '52) and Dixie Savio-Jones have many passions—art and art collecting, tennis, skiing, history, politics and international travel—complemented by their lifelong love of learning. But it was financial pragmatism that initially led them to establish a gift that pays them income at the University of Denver.

"Honestly, we were looking for an investment opportunity," Bob says. Familiar with the benefits of this type of gift, including the lifetime stream of annual income and tax break it provides, the couple explored the idea of giving to the School of Art and Art History, which helped launch Bob's career 60 years ago.

"The impetus for giving was initially the financial aspect, but then it changed," Bob says.

Because the couple's gift was matched, funds were available immediately to provide scholarships for students in the School of Art and Art History. Bob and Dixie were able to learn about students who had benefited directly from their generosity.

"We said, ‘Wow, we're really helping these students.' Now, we look at the return on our investment as being helpful to the next generation of DU students," Bob says.

Since then, the couple has established three more of these types of gifts at DU. With each gift, they have deepened their connection to the University and discovered an ancillary benefit—fueling their own passions.

Bob has always been passionate about art.

"As I grew up, I always wanted to draw. I thought, I'm going to be an artist. I just didn't know a great deal about it, though," he says.

Bob started his college career at CU-Boulder and transferred to DU as a sophomore since DU offered graphic design courses through the school of art and architecture. He continued to cultivate his interest in art professionally, building a graphic design and advertising business, which he ran until his retirement.

It was in this role that Bob met Dixie, a national sales manager for one of his clients, Samsonite. The two married, and in their retirement, explored Dixie's passion: international travel.

Bob and Dixie travel abroad each year, including trips with DU's alumni to Israel and Cuba. Their interest in foreign cultures, history and politics led them to a DU Pioneer Alumni Legends (PALs) event, featuring the Dean of the Korbel School of International Studies and former Ambassador Christopher Hill.

"When I heard the ambassador say, ‘We are here to solve problems, not create them,' that got me. I thought, that's exactly the way I feel. It's easy to create a problem, but how do you teach young people how to solve issues, how to see and approach them differently?" Dixie recalls.

A shared philosophy and appreciation of cultural understanding as a means to solve global issues
inspired Bob and Dixie to create two gifts to support the Korbel School of International Studies. Bob and Dixie can't imagine a better way to support their interests while cultivating their own passions.

"How else could you ever do it and get such benefit?" Dixie asks. "We receive income, the students in need get help, and the University gets the support they need to keep providing for these students. It's win-win-win."

Open Doors for DU Students
Your future gift can help DU students pursue their dreams. Learn about the many was you can give by contacting Jon Kraus at 303.871.4619 or