Raymond E. Beckham (BS ’49, MA ’69) remembers begging to have BYU’s first alumni house built near the university’s west entrance. Most administrators had favored a site more removed from campus’s main traffic thoroughfare, but the former Alumni Association director made a convincing case. Before being razed in 2006, the 14,000-square-foot Alumni House served BYU and its alumni at that location for 44 years.
When the Gordon B. Hinckley Alumni and Visitors Center was dedicated June 23, 2007—on President Hinckley’s 97th birthday—the 80,000-square-foot, three-story building became the school’s front gate and a gathering place for alumni, friends, and other campus visitors. The building was funded entirely through private donations, with contributions from more than 70,000 people.