A Lebanese-American businessman set up a million-dollar scholarship fund, which will put more than 70 Arab-American students through university over the next 25 years.
Russell J. Ebeid -- the son of working-class Lebanese immigrants who now heads a global glass manufacturer in Michigan -- put down 500,000 dollars, which was matched with 250,000 dollars from the Community Foundation for Southeast Michigan.
The resulting Ebeid Family Fund will total more than one million dollars with interest over 25 years.
"I feel good about what I am doing," Ebeid told the Dearborn-based Arab American newspaper. "I hope that my experience will inspire other Arab Americans to stand up, be proud of their identity and give generously where they can."
The fund, a partnership with the Arab Community Center for Economic and Social Services (ACCESS) in Detroit, will provide scholarships for upwards of 71 Arab-American students at Kettering University in Flint in the next 25 years.
Ebeid is a 1962 graduate of the university, formerly called the General Motors Institute. He began his career as a mechanical engineer with auto maker General Motors and in 1970 joined Guardian Industries, a global player in the glass, automotive and building products industries.
He rose through the ranks at Guardian and became president of the Glass Division in 1985.
Ebeid is listed in the Who’s Who in America and has been awarded Luxembourg's Knight Order of Merit and Germany's Federal Cross of Merit. He was also named Arab American Businessman of the Year for 2003 by the Arab American Chamber of Commerce.