Indiana State University Newsroom

Woman gives ISU $25,000 for scholarship to honor late husband

April 17, 2022

Kathy Giovanini of Venice, Florida, has given Indiana State University $25,000 in honor of her late husband Louis “Bitsy” Giovanini, who has two degrees from ISU.

The gift creates the Louis A. Giovanini Endowed Scholarship to support Bayh College of Education students with financial need.

Louis Giovanini was born and raised in Clinton, Indiana, and came to Indiana State University after receiving a basketball scholarship. He played basketball under the legendary ISU coach Duane Klueh and also played on the Sycamore baseball team. He graduated from Indiana State in 1961 with a bachelor's degree in health and safety and earned a master’s degree in school counseling in 1962.

"He had fond memories of Indiana State and athletics," said Kathy Giovanini. "In his estate planning he wished to do something and to give something back."

Louis was a teacher and coach in in Columbus, Indiana, for 32 years. That’s where he met his wife and fellow teacher Kathy. As the first baseball and basketball coach at Columbus East High School, he led the 1979, 1987, and 1989 baseball teams and the 1977 basketball team to the state finals. He was later inducted into the Indiana High School Baseball Coaches Association Hall of Fame.

"He loved coaching and was very successful at it," Kathy Giovanini said. "The only thing he loved more was competing himself."

The couple moved to Venice, Florida, where Louis played for and coached the Florida Legends softball team. He was a member of the Senior Softball Hall of Fame, the Florida Half-Century Hall of Fame, and the Venice Florida Sports Hall of Fame.

Kathy and Louis were married for 46 years before his passing in 2014.

"Education was big for us," she said. "We have no children, so giving back was important. Lou always made an effort to keep the connection at Indiana State."

Said Ken Menefee, Executive Director of Planned and Principal Gifts: "From our roots as a teachers college, Indiana State University has a long history of teaching exemplary educators. We are incredibly grateful for the gift from Louis and Kathy, which will allow the Bayh College of Education to provide even more opportunities to future teachers."

Photo of Kathy and Louis Giovanini