Hearts as big as the help they give.
In 2010, Margaret and Isaac Barpal of Sarasota, Florida, drove past a Southeastern Guide Dogs billboard, creating a moment and a memory that changed everything for our school. Curious, the Barpals arranged a campus visit and tour, where they happened to witness a puppy being transported to an offsite veterinary clinic. Inspired to help, the couple donated medical equipment to the school’s small clinic, but that was only the beginning. Their involvement quickly grew, and the rest, as they say, is history.
Margaret and Isaac Barpal were the lead donors who made it possible to open our 5,892 square foot, $1.75 million Barpal Veterinary Center in August 2013. This world-class veterinary hospital provides state-of-the-art care to thousands of dogs annually.
The Barpals, along with Keith G. Hirst, were the lead donors for our Barpal – Hirst Student Center, a 30,865 square-foot, $8.5 million facility that opened in In August 2013. The Student Center houses visually impaired students and veterans during their on-campus training and provides office space for support staff and volunteers.
In June 2021, we opened the doors to our new Margaret and Isaac Barpal Canine Fitness Center, a 6,028 square-foot, $2 million facility funded solely by the Barpals. The Canine Fitness Center is the only facility of its kind in the working dog world, built on the cutting edge of canine health, wellness, and longevity. Here, we train the Olympic athletes of the canine world. The canine fitness program enables us to increase the graduation success rate of our dogs and enhance the long-term quality of their life.
As Cornerstone Society members, Margaret and Isaac stand with other like-minded, committed people who recognize the value of a multi-year investment in our mission, ensuring our students and alumni can count on our help today, tomorrow, and beyond.
As Heritage Society members, this generous couple is committed to the long-term stability of our school and to leaving a legacy by pledging their lasting support through planned giving.
In addition to their generous support, Margaret and Isaac serve in an ongoing, informal leadership role, offering their experience, ideas, and wisdom. Southeastern Guide Dogs is extremely fortunate to have friends like the Barpals standing with us.
“It wasn’t the cute puppies that impressed me. It was the commitment of the volunteers and staff, and the tangible and immediate results. We may not know what it means to be blind or to have post-traumatic stress disorder, but we can help in a quick and efficient way.”
— Isaac Barpal