Jim (’71) and Pauline (Martin) Bresnahan (’70)
After four years of basketball eligibility at Gonzaga, Jim Bresnahan (’71) was serving as a graduate assistant when he and his wife Pauline (Martin) (’70) moved into a small apartment in what is now The Martin Centre.
“It was a perk of the job,” Pauline explained. In the two years they lived there, she and Jim watched over the gym, and helped with event set up and take down, including several concerts for up-and-coming artists. John Denver, Kenny Rogers and many others came through on the Bresnahans’ watch. “Frank Zappa wanted to borrow our telephone,” she recalled.
When the Bresnahans met on the GU campus, Jim was a basketball player and Pauline was a cheerleader. They would see one another during cheer practice in the gym, where Jim would often be shooting hoops with friends. He had also been known for cruising up and down Boone Avenue in an fire blue muscle car.
“It was a brand new 4-speed 383 1969 Roadrunner,” Jim remembered fondly. His roommate teased him about the real reason that he drew Pauline’s attention. “He would say, ‘the only reason she’s dating you is for that car,’” she laughed. “He had to eat his words when we got married and sold that car.”
The Bresnahans’ love for the Gonzaga community runs deep to this day. They regularly attend basketball games and their three daughters attended Gonzaga-in-Florence. Jim and Pauline also made GU the owner and beneficiary of an insurance policy.
“My career is in financial services,” said Jim, “and I saw gifting a paid-up insurance policy as a way to multiply our giving.” When the policy matures, according to the Bresnahans’ wishes, Gonzaga will establish an endowed scholarship for students attending Gonzaga-in-Florence.
“We want Gonzaga to continue to grow and thrive,” said Pauline. “And we want our gift to make a difference by allowing students to have an unforgettable experience.”
One thing the Bresnahans have retained from their own unforgettable experience is an appreciation for the people and the philosophy that makes up the Gonzaga community.
“When you leave Gonzaga, you leave with lifelong friends,” Pauline said. “The Gonzaga bond is for a lifetime.”