Arthur and Joan Weisberg, founders of State Electric Supply Co., Arthur's Enterprises and Service Wire Co. in Huntington W. Va., are contributing $2.5 million to Marshall University, Huntington, in support of the university's division of engineering and computer science in the College of Information Technology and Engineering (CITE). University President Stephen J. Kopp said the Marshall University Foundation Inc. will receive the entire amount of the gift within five years.

Art Weisberg said the reason for the gift to Marshall is simple. As the need for engineers grows, so does the importance of educating them locally. Marshall is the logical place for students to go for that education, he said.

“Ten years ago we didn't have any engineers working for us (at State Electric),” Weisberg said. “We have eight now, and they are very valuable. None of them went to Marshall. To keep bringing people in is very difficult. We have local talent here. We can't sell ourselves short. Unless we have engineers (in Huntington), the standard of living is going to drop. Engineering is where we are going to have to fight.”

Art Weisberg is a native of Brooklyn, N.Y., and a 1950 graduate of City College of New York with a degree in electrical engineering. He founded State Electric Supply Co., a retail and wholesale distributor of electrical and electronic supplies as a one-man operation in 1952.

Today, under the corporate umbrella of Arthur's Enterprises, State Electric has 33 branches in five states. In 1968, the Weisbergs established a specialty wire-fabrication company called Service Wire Co. that now has customers throughout the world.