To: Members of the University Community
From: Robert J. Zimmer
Date: November 6, 2008
Re: $300 million gift to the University of Chicago
I am very pleased to announce a remarkable gift of $300 million to the University of Chicago for the benefit of the Graduate School of Business by University Trustee and alumnus David G. Booth, MBA '71, his wife Suzanne Booth, and their children, Erin and Chandler Booth. This is the largest donation in the University's history and the largest gift ever in support of any business school. In recognition of the Booth family's extraordinary generosity, the Board of Trustees has voted unanimously to name the school the University of Chicago Booth School of Business.
This gift from the Booth family is a resounding endorsement of the University's commitment to groundbreaking theory and rigorous examination of empirical data, which captivated Mr. Booth as a student and guided his career. In making the gift, he noted that his successful investment firm, Dimensional Fund Advisers, was built on principles he learned at the University and particularly from Professor Eugene Fama.
Dean Edward Snyder has announced that the school will use the gift to support several new initiatives, including aggressively attracting and retaining outstanding faculty. Other uses being considered include developing new faculty groups in academic areas not normally associated with business schools, expanding existing research centers, and launching ambitious programs to better leverage the school's intellectual capital, including programs that extend its international presence.
Mr. Booth founded Dimensional Fund Advisers in 1981 with classmate Rex Sinquefield, MBA '72. His deep commitment to the University of Chicago has been long-standing, including his service on the University Board of Trustees from 2002 to the present, and on the GSB Council from 1999 to the present. He earlier gave the University $10 million to help fund construction of the Charles M. Harper Center.
Mr. Booth's success and his decision to make such a significant investment in the University are a testament to the power of the ideas developed by University of Chicago faculty, students, and alumni. I want to express my appreciation to the Booth family for their profound commitment to the ideals of the University and their unparalleled generosity, which will ensure that the University of Chicago Booth School of Business remains one of the leading schools in the world.