Following support for scholarships, Cochran makes gift for new business building

University of Kansas alumnus Norm Cochran has made a $100,000 gift toward a new building for the KU School of Business. 

Cochran earned a bachelor’s degree in accounting from KU in 1951. His KU education occurred in two stages — he attended KU through his junior year until drafted to serve in the Air Force during World War II, in which he became a second lieutenant with dual wings as a navigator and bombardier. Following his military service, he returned to KU to complete his degree. 

In 1951, Cochran became a Certified Public Accountant and worked for Ernst and Young. In 1965, he began his career with the Lee Company, which later merged with VF Corporation, the world’s largest apparel firm. During his 23 years with the company, he worked in Kansas City, Pennsylvania and England. He retired in 1988 as a vice president of the firm. 

Long appreciative of the education he received at KU, Cochran instilled the Jayhawk tradition in his family. His three sons graduated from KU, and his grandchildren are following in their footsteps. “So we’re a KU family, and I’m delighted,” he said. 

His earlier support for KU includes a $100,000 gift to create the Normal L. Cochran Family Scholarship in the School of Business.

Cochran said his motivation for contributing toward a new facility for the KU School of Business is simple: “We need a new building — it will help to raise the school’s image.” 

Norm Cochran