Case Western Reserve breaks all-time philanthropy record for second straight year

President Barbara R. Snyder announced last night that Case Western Reserve University’s alumni and friends have broken the institution’s all-time record for philanthropy for the second consecutive year. As of Thursday—one month before the end of the fiscal year—giving totaled $134.5 million, more than $8 million ahead of last year’s landmark achievement.

“We continue to be humbled and honored by the generosity of our graduates and other supporters,” Snyder said. “These individuals and organizations recognize the remarkable work of our faculty and students, and have made investments that will allow even greater advances in the years to come.”

President Snyder shared the campaign news as part of the groundbreaking ceremonies for the $50 million Tinkham Veale University Center, the first major project of Forward Thinking, Case Western Reserve University’s $1 billion capital campaign. The commitments to date for Fiscal Year 2012 put the university’s campaign total at $713.7 million—a gain of more than $50 million since the campaign’s public launch on Oct. 13, 2011.

“Universities traditionally see the pace of gifts slow in the months immediately after a campaign kickoff,” said Frank N. Linsalata, chairman of the university’s campaign committee. “This impressive progress underscores the immense enthusiasm of our constituents, as well as the inspirational quality of the research and education taking place on our campus.”

More than 300 guests gathered Thursday evening as Snyder cited several additional initiatives supported through philanthropic commitments this year:

  • Trustee Archie Co and his wife, Riuko, endowed a professorship in neuroscience awarded to Gary Landreth, PhD, in recognition of his extraordinary work in the field of Alzheimer’s research;
  • Alvin and Laura Siegal enabled the creation of the Alvin and Laura Siegal Lifelong Learning Center at Case Western Reserve, which will support broad community education programs as well as ones emphasizing elements of Jewish religious studies, culture and history;
  • Members and friends of the Flora Stone Mather Alumnae Association enabled the organization to complete a $2 million challenge grant to support the programs of the Flora Stone Mather Center for Women;
  • Trustee Larry Sears and his wife, Sally Zlotnick Sears, committed $5 million to inspire others to support a permanent structure for think[box], the hands-on learning initiative designed to encourage innovation and entrepreneurship in the Case School of Engineering; their gifts are part of $11 million recently pledged to think[box] and other academic programs at the school; and
  • The Veale Foundation endowed the Veale Chair in Wireless Health at the Case School of Engineering.

Tinkham “Tink” Veale himself was on hand for the groundbreaking, joining several other major donors in lifting ceremonial shovels. They included: Trustee chair Charles “Bud” Koch and his wife, Katie; campaign chair Frank Linsalata and his wife, Jocelyne; Phil Ranney and Bill LaPlace, representing the Kent H. Smith Charitable Trust; and Maddy Mavec, the great-granddaughter of Kelvin and Eleanor Smith, representing the Kelvin and Eleanor Smith Foundation.

Architect Ralph Johnson of Perkins + Will led design of the 82,000-square-foot center, located just northwest of the university’s Kelvin Smith Library and southeast of the Peter B. Lewis Building, home of the Weatherhead School of Management. The Tinkham Veale University Center will stand between them as its own architectural icon, featuring soaring windows on all sides as well as a green roof to absorb rainwater and enhance the sustainable nature of the construction.

Planned to meet LEED Silver standards, the Tinkham Veale University Center will include meeting spaces, classrooms, dining areas and a 9,000-square-foot ballroom. The center will serve as the new home of more than 160 student organizations. Members of the Undergraduate Student Government narrated a virtual “walkthrough” of the structure (see the video above) that featured the architects’ renderings of much of the building’s interior. The university will make several of the larger spaces within the building available for rent by outside individuals and organizations.

To learn more about the Tinkham Veale University Center, visit

To learn more about Forward Thinking: The Campaign for Case Western Reserve University, please visit