October 18-20 | Tucson, AZ

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Argent commits $1.5 million to establish Argent Innovation Fund

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October 18-20, 2023 / Tucson, AZ
The annual summit for research institution gap fund and accelerator programs, including proof of concept programs, startup accelerators, and university venture funds

The Story

Argent Financial Group, along with Argent founder, CEO, and Louisiana Tech University alumni Kyle McDonald and his wife, Tisdale, have committed $1.5 million to the Louisiana Tech University Foundation to establish the Argent Innovation Fund. This fund will empower the growth of innovation, entrepreneurship, and partnerships through the Innovation Enterprise at Louisiana Tech and support the expansion and success of the Enterprise Campus in the heart of Ruston. 

“This investment is a testament to the innovative work at the Enterprise Campus and will further our ability to attract partners and impact the community at large,” University President Jim Henderson said. “It is obvious that this community has an abundance of generous individuals with a deep understanding of Louisiana Tech’s even greater potential. We are grateful to the McDonalds and Argent.” 

McDonald, a 1981 graduate, was recognized as Alumnus of the Year by the Louisiana Tech University Alumni Association during the Distinguished Alumni Awards luncheon held on Nov. 10. McDonald announced the gift during his acceptance speech. 

“My desire now is to focus my attention on helping grow the legacy of this great University,” McDonald said. “We look around and see so much innovation and entrepreneurship taking place across the campus and throughout its colleges and departments.” 

The Argent Innovation Fund will further bolster the robust corporate and industry partnerships that are being formed across the Enterprise Campus at Louisiana Tech and drive new opportunities for the University and the entire region. 

“This fund is intended to help Tech develop corporate partnerships, which will create additional innovative alternative funding sources,” McDonald said. “Each gift is significant and allows us to add to the great foundation that’s already been laid.” 

To recognize the support, the Tech Pointe atrium located in the heart of the Enterprise Campus will be named for Argent Financial Group. 

“Kyle McDonald has been a visionary in his professional life as an entrepreneur, philanthropist, and business leader,” said Dave Norris, Chief Innovation Officer at Louisiana Tech. “Argent Financial is an extraordinary success story, and his recognition of and commitment to the importance of our Innovation Enterprise at Louisiana Tech is inspiring and energizing. The establishment of the Argent Innovation Fund, which I am confident will attract other like-minded philanthropic investment to this activity, is the beginning of a whole new legacy that will drive prosperity for our university and our region for decades to come.” 

“We are grateful for Argent’s continued support of Louisiana Tech University and for this opportunity to recognize their generosity through the naming of the Tech Pointe lobby,” said Lisa Bradley, Interim Vice President of University Advancement and University Foundation. “Argent is a wonderful testament of the life-long value of an education received from Louisiana Tech, the power of partnerships between industry leaders and Louisiana Tech, and the transformational impact of philanthropy.”

While at Tech, Kyle served as Treasurer and Rush Chairman for Sigma Nu Fraternity, President of Lambda Sigma Honor Society, the Student Government Association (SGA) Senior Class President, and SGA President. In addition, he served as student member on the Board of Trustees for State Colleges and Universities and was selected to Who’s Who his senior year. 

After earning a bachelor’s degree in finance from Louisiana Tech, Kyle attended law school at LSU, earning a J.D. in 1984. During that time, Kyle worked for the Louisiana Bankers Association on the project to rewrite the Louisiana Banking Laws in the early 1980s and practiced law with Taylor, Porter, Brooks & Phillips in Baton Rouge. He and Tisdale returned to Ruston in 1985 where he joined Ruston State Bank managing the trust department before founding Argent in 1990.  He and Tisdale (’81) have four children, eight grandchildren (and counting), and are active members of the Bridge Community Church in Ruston.    

Kyle has served as a member of YPO, and as Chairman of Ruston-Lincoln Chamber of commerce, North Louisiana Economic Partnership, Louisiana Tech College of Business Advisory Board, and Northern Louisiana Medical Center Board of Trustees. He is also a member of the Committee of 100 for Economic Development in Louisiana, and a board member for Council for a Better Louisiana (CABL). Tisdale is also a longtime member of the board of directors of the Boys and Girls Club of North Louisiana. 

Argent Financial Group is an independent client asset services firm offering individuals, families, businesses, and institutions wealth management, asset management, and asset servicing. The firm is responsible for more than $65 billion in client assets. Formed in 1990 in Ruston, Louisiana, Argent can trace its roots back to 1930. More than 44 Louisiana Tech graduates currently work for Argent.  


Full story: Argent commits $1.5 million to establish Argent Innovation Fund | Louisiana Tech University

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