Two Cities, One Education

January 1, 2013


Behind each endowed gift is a personal motivation. Some people want to honor their loved ones. Others want to make a positive impact on society. Frederick Holler ’57, MD, established an endowed scholarship at Canisius College because he wants future students to be influenced by the Jesuit tradition, in the same ways he was.

“It builds character and character is that un-definable element that influences how you interact with others and how you make choices and judgments,” says Holler. “It is practical and ethical, and pervades you for the rest of your life.”

Holler was one of 42 students to enter the Canisius pre-med program in 1953. Only 16 made it through successfully, including Holler. Accepted to Georgetown University Medical School, Holler went on to serve as a flight surgeon in the U.S. Air Force and complete his residency at Albany Medical Center. He also became a major in the Air National Guard. After his military service, Holler enjoyed a fulfilling career as an otolaryngologist. He also co-founded the Medical Mutual Insurance Company of Maine, where he raised four accomplished children with his wife, Nancy.

Though Holler lived outside Western New York for many years, he remains a fervent ambassador for the region and alma mater. The endowed scholarship he established affords a Canisius education to a graduate of St. Dominic’s High School, near his home in Lewiston, Maine.

“This enables me to invest in the future of the Lewiston community and similarly support alma mater,” says Holler. “Canisius is a little jewel tucked away in Western New York. It’s a gem educationally, it’s a gem culturally, and it’s a gem morally. The biggest bang for your buck is right there at Canisius College. I try to spread the word as best I can.”