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For 15 years, the Elliotts have provided support for a variety of capital projects, scholarships and charitable functions at OU, including:
  • a $2 million gift toward the School of Business Administration
  • endowed scholarship and academic lecture funds
  • contributions toward the Hugh and Nancy Elliott Room in the O’rena
  • President’s Invitational golf outing, which has raised more than $1 million for scholarships
  • athletics volunteer committee dedicated to fundraising

“When you give, it’s the best thing you can do for yourself. I learned many years ago – and it’s true – that even if you give just a little bit, over time, it adds up.” — Hugh Elliott



  • The largest bell weighs around 5,000 pounds and is five feet in diameter
  • Total weight of all bells is over 30,000 pounds (over 15 tons)
  • The carillon tower is one of the tallest bell towers on a college campus in the U.S.
  • Founded in 1842, Verdin is the oldest privately-held manufacturing business in the state of Ohio.
  • The carillon bell tower will feature a fully chromatic 49-bell carillon ranging from low C, which weighs around 5,000 pounds, to high C, at 24 pounds. 
  • The traditional hand-action instrument provides the complete musical range to play any musical composition. 
  • Twenty five of the bells will also have the capability of being played automatically.
  • The clock on the Elliott Carillon Tower is approximately 9’ 6” in diameter. 
  • The minute hand from center (of clock) to outside tip is 54 ¾” long.





Elliott Tower

Elliott Tower

Artist's rendering of the Elliott Tower, which will be located north of Kresge Library. 

Donated by longtime supporters Hugh and Nancy Elliott, the Elliott Tower is designed to be a rallying point for student activities and creates a stunning visual centerpiece for Oakland’s campus. It is complete with a water fountain, garden and decorative landscaping. 

The structure has become the 14th carillon tower in Michigan; OU is the fourth Michigan university to have a carillon.  Its 49 bells and keyboards were cast and built by the Royal Bellfoundry Petit & Fritsen of the Netherlands; the The Verdin Company  of Cincinnati did the design and installation. 

Dennis Curry, local carillonneur and longtime friend of the Elliotts, will serve as the university carillonneur and establish a program of education and training though the Department of Music.

There will be a regular live playing schedule in addition to the traditional quarter chimes. 

Hugh and Nancy Elliott share thoughts about their generous gift to the Oakland University community.