University of Richmond

Campaign Passes $160 Million Mark

May 5, 2005

With the target date still three years away, the University of Richmonds Transforming Bright Minds campaign recently passed the $160 million mark, moving quickly toward reaching its ambitious $200 million goal.

We are delighted by the enthusiastic response of donors to the campaign as momentum continues to develop on behalf of the Universitys mission, said President William E. Cooper. The extraordinary level of financial support weve achieved at this stage of the campaign serves as compelling proof that we enjoy widespread support in our effort to position the school in the top tier of universities nationwide.

Of the total $163.5 million committed to date, the Universitys trustees have pledged $51 million, 41 individual donors have made commitments of $1 million or more, and $70 million has come from alumni, friends, foundations, and corporations in the Greater Richmond region. The campaign is being led by five trustees: Robert L. Burrus Jr, Robert S. Jepson Jr., Robert S. Ukrop, Allison Weinstein and George Wellde Jr.

Since the campaigns public launch on March 4, 2004, support has been strong for projects and programs touching nearly every aspect of the University. Richmond has received major commitments benefiting the Gottwald Center for the Sciences, University Museums, international education, social sciences, leadership studies, the business school, library resources, athletics and campus life.

At the same time, the campaign has emphasized annual giving, with a goal of raising $5 million for the 2004-05 academic year. To date, the annual fund has received $4.9 million, an increase of 25 percent over the same time last year. Annual gifts support yearly expenses such as student scholarships, enhancements to the curriculum, library purchases, technology upgrades, student life programs and improvements to facilities.

We are working strategically to increase alumni giving, said David Johnson, vice president for advancement, and weve enjoyed remarkable success. Our goal is to have 40 percent of our alumni participate in the Annual Fund by the end of the campaign.

Elevating alumni giving is not simply about increasing the amount of financial support our graduates offer. Increasing alumni participation is a priority because the alumni giving percentage is weighted heavily in national college rankings as well as by many foundations when awarding grants.

Premier liberal arts institutions achieve their status, Johnson says, because alumni propel them to prominence with their gifts.