Lawrence University Receives $10 Million Bequest Commitment from Anonymous Donor

APPLETON, WIS. — Citing a strong belief in all of what Lawrence University does and represents, a graduate of the college, who has chosen to remain anonymous, has made a $10 million commitment to Lawrence in the form of a bequest college officials announced today (6/8).

It ranks among the largest commitments in Lawrence’s history, second only to the $16 million commitment from an anonymous donor in 2006 for the construction of the Warch Campus Center.

The $10 million future gift will support the college’s endowment, including the establishment of a new endowed professorship in Lawrence’s conservatory of music. A portion of the gift also will be used to bolster the endowment for Bjorklunden, Lawrence’s 425-acre “northern campus” in Door County, with additional funds from the gift designated for campus facilities maintenance and general operations.

“The generosity of this donor is remarkable in its scale and in the hopes it embodies for the future of our fine liberal arts college and conservatory,” said Lawrence President Jill Beck. “Planned commitments such as this may be more comfortable for donors to make today, yet they help us to guarantee the success of tomorrow.”

“We are exceedingly grateful that one of Lawrence’s own would make a financial commitment of this magnitude to the college,” said Cal Husmann, vice president for development and alumni relations. “This person has previously made significant philanthropic investments in Lawrence for a variety of important initiatives and this latest gift is yet another incredible example of the donor’s unwavering support for Lawrence, its students and its programs.

“This donor also understands that while Lawrence is an institution with a national profile, the college has a finite and small number of alumni relative to its peers,” Husmann added. “As such, we are obviously very pleased the donor has made Lawrence a philanthropic priority.”

In making the gift, the donor said growing the college’s endowment was paramount to ensuring Lawrence’s future financial vitality.

“Lawrence is deserving of the very best and I want to do my part to strengthen the college’s endowment,” said the donor, who lives outside of Wisconsin. “Deferred giving provides everyone who loves and cares about Lawrence an important way to profoundly impact the college. I very much hope my example might encourage others to make deferred gifts in ways that are appropriate for their financial situation. Collectively, we can effect significant progress at the college.”

Lawrence is in the fourth year of six-year $150 million capital campaign that was publicly announced last October. The “More Light!” Campaign, which will conclude in October 2011, has raised $120 million to date toward its goal. Half of the campaign’s goal, $75 million, will be directed to Lawrence’s endowment.