Stephen M. Ross and Mary Sue Coleman at today’s press conference. Image credit: Michigan Photography
/ By Alan Gallindoss/
Business success and a commitment to giving back are key imperatives of corporate leadership. Stephen Ross has just proven that again today when it was announced today in a joint press conference that the New York real estate developer will give US$200 million to the University of Michigan, his alma mater, with the goal of helping significantly transform the student experience at the university’s business school and its athletic campus.
This donation is the largest single gift ever received by the University. Moreover, when combined with earlier donations this brings Stephen Ross’s total giving to the university to US$313 million over the years.
Stephen M. Ross
With today’s announcement The Stephen M. Ross School of Business at the university and University of Michigan Athletics will each receive US$100 million.
Ross is Chairman and the founder of Related Companies, one of the most prominent real estate developers in the world. Related is perhaps best known for the development of Time Warner Center at Columbia Circle in New York, and of the proposed 26-acre Hudson Yards development currently getting ready for construction on Manhattan’s west side. Ross is also the owner of the Miami Dolphins.
The money is donated will be spent on projects to create contemporary spaces for the nearly 6, 000 students who take courses at the Stephen M. Ross School of Business and the 900 plus student athletes who participate in all sports on the athletic campus. In addition, money will be earmarked for scholarships to be provided to many qualified students in need.
“Stephen Ross’ vision has always been about the ability of facilities to transform the human experience, ” said University of Michigan President Mary Sue Coleman. “He understands the power of well-conceived spaces, and his generosity will benefit generations of Michigan students, faculty and coaches.
“This historic gift is not only an investment in the University of Michigan, but also in our state. Steve Ross believes deeply in our collective future as national and global leaders.”
Ross has also agreed to serve as the Chair of the university’s “Victors for Michigan Campaign” that will kick off on Nov. 8.
In 2004, Ross gave $100 million toward a new building and endowed operations for the Business School, which was renamed in his honour in recognition of his gift. The building was completed in 2009.
Ross shakes hands with students gathered this morning to celebrate the gift. Image credit: Michigan Photography
Ross said: “The University of Michigan had a profound impact on my life and I have received enormous satisfaction from being able to give back to the institution that played such a critical role in my success. I am thrilled to be able to make such an impactful contribution and to not only help write the next chapter for the university, but also offer much-needed scholarships to ensure we continue to attract the best and the brightest students and provide them with the financial resources they need.
“I am confident that the initiatives we undertake will further transform the business school and athletic facilities and ensure the University Michigan continues to offer a world-class institution for our future leaders. I could not be more proud.”
Stephen Ross grew up in Detroit, has deep roots there and has clearly remembered where he came from with this donation.