trustees

Millers commit $10 million to Moody Coliseum renovation, expansion

David B. and Carolyn Lacy MillerDavid B. Miller, SMU alumnus and member of the Board of Trustees, and his wife, Carolyn Lacy Miller, have committed $10 million toward the expansion and renovation of Moody Coliseum.

“With this remarkable gift, David and Carolyn Miller move us closer to full funding for the renovation and expansion of this major resource for the campus and community,” said SMU President R. Gerald Turner. “As a former Mustang basketball player, David has enjoyed the excitement of athletic success in this facility, and he and Carolyn have participated in numerous ceremonies in Moody. Now they are helping to ensure that others enjoy these communal experiences in a state-of-the-art version of this historic facility.”

The Millers’ announcement came just days after the Moody Foundation announced April 20 that it is committing $20 million toward the $40 million Moody expansion and renovation project. “With these lead gifts, we feel confident we have the momentum to attract other donors, and we look forward to working with them,” Turner added.

In commenting on their gift, David Miller said, “I had a wonderful academic and athletic experience at SMU. We are delighted to give something back to a University that has been so important to three generations of our family.”

Miller is co-founder and partner of EnCap Investments L.P., a private equity firm based in Houston and Dallas. He also is president of the David B. Miller Family Foundation, which he established in 2006. In addition to SMU, the foundation contributes to numerous charitable organizations. Carolyn Miller is vice president of the foundation.

Mr. Miller earned two degrees from SMU, a B.B.A. degree in finance in 1972 and an M.B.A. degree in 1973. As an undergraduate, he was a three-year starter and letterman on the varsity basketball team and a member of the 1971-1972 Southwest Conference Co-Championship team. Mr. Miller received the Distinguished Alumni Award from SMU’s Cox School of Business in 2000. In 2009 he received the Silver Anniversary Mustang Award from the SMU Lettermen’s Association.

“We are happy and honored that a former SMU student-athlete who has done so well professionally continues to support our student-athletes at such a significant level,” said Director of Athletics Steve Orsini. “David understands the importance of athletics to SMU, and this gift gives our programs an immediate and long-lasting boost, as well as dramatically improving the quality of experience all students will enjoy at Moody Coliseum events. The Millers’ generous gift will help make our legendary facility a state-of-the-art venue and help our teams meet the top-25 standard we have set for each of them.”

> Read more about the Millers’ gift from SMU News
> Also in the Forum: Moody Foundation $20 million gift will renovate namesake coliseum at SMU
> Visit Moody Coliseum Renovation Central

Ruth Altshuler to receive SMU’s 2010-11 J. Erik Jonsson Ethics Award

Ruth Collins Sharp AltshulerRenowned civic and philanthropic leader Ruth Collins Sharp Altshuler will be honored as the 2010-11 recipient of the J. Erik Jonsson Ethics Award at a noon luncheon on Thursday, March 10. The event will take place in the Martha Proctor Mack Grand Ballroom, Umphrey Lee Center.

The award is presented annually by SMU’s Cary M. Maguire Center for Ethics and Public Responsibility to individuals who exemplify the spirit of moral leadership and public virtue.

The presentation will include tributes by Former First Lady Laura Bush, SMU President R. Gerald Turner and Nancy G. Brinker, founder and CEO of the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation. She will be introduced by her daughter, Sally Sharp Harris.

“Few people are as deserving of this honor as Ruth,” says Maguire Center Director Rita Kirk. “She is a tireless servant leader, and her devotion to many causes has enriched the lives of countless people and organizations.

“Beyond the headlines,” Kirk adds, “Ruth is simply a loving person who enlivens a conversation and holds an expectation for excellence that draws people to work alongside her. We are honored to recognize her accomplishments.”

At the national level, Altshuler was appointed by President George W. Bush to the Library of Congress Trust and by Secretary of State Colin Powell to the U.S. Commission to UNESCO.

Altshuler is the first person in the United States to receive all three national service honors – the Outstanding Philanthropist of the Year Award from the National Society of Fundraising Executives; the national Alexis de Tocqueville Award of the United Way of America; and the Distinguished Service Award given by the Association of Governing Boards of Universities and Colleges. She has been honored on a global level with the rarely given Order of Distinguished Auxiliary Service from the Salvation Army International in London. Her numerous honors closer to home include recognition by the YWCA of Metropolitan Dallas’ Centennial Award, the Texas Women’s Hall of Fame, the Linz Award and Annette Strauss Humanitarian Award.

Her current leadership positions include being vice chair of the Southwestern Medical Foundation, life trustee of the Hockaday School and honorary chair of the Dallas Children’s Advocacy Center and the Dallas Summer Musicals. She is immediate past chair of the Communities Foundation of Texas. She also sits on the boards of the Laura Bush Foundation for America’s Libraries, KERA, and the Salvation Army of Dallas and is one of three life members of the Salvation Army’s National Advisory Board. Altshuler also serves on the Board of Visitors of the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center.

Altshuler, a 1966 Distinguished Alumni Award recipient, is one of SMU’s longest-serving trustees – she is former chair of the Board and a current member. In addition, she is co-chair of the Second Century Campaign Leadership Council and served as a co-chair of The Campaign for SMU (1997-2002). She also is co-chair of the Second Century Celebration Organizing Committee.

Past winners of the J. Erik Jonsson Award include Bob Buford, Ronald G. Steinhart, Michael M. Boone, Zan W. Holmes Jr., Roger Staubach, Caren Prothro, Tom Luce, Ron Anderson, Jack Lowe Jr., William T. Solomon, Stanley H. Marcus, Charles C. Sprague and Curtis W. Meadows Jr.

> Read more from SMU News
> Visit the Maguire Center for Ethics and Public Responsibility online

George W. Bush Presidential Center breaks ground at SMU

Bush Presidential Center groundbreaking at SMU

More than 3,000 guests filled a massive tent on the site of the George W. Bush Presidential Center to celebrate groundbreaking for the building. Fifteen officials took up shovels to turn dirt, marking the official start of construction, with completion scheduled for 2013.

“Today is another milestone along a timeline that began for us in December 2000, when we began our effort to bring the George W. Bush Presidential Center to the University,” SMU President R. Gerald Turner told the crowd.

“We knew that this Presidential Center would benefit from its association with SMU because of the academic resources, vitality of dialogue and research programs we offer. Having the historic resources of the Library and Museum will provide remarkable opportunities for research and educational experiences for more than 200,000 K-13 students in the Metroplex,” Turner said.

George W. Bush welcomed the crowd, saying “To those of you who are not privileged to live in Texas, welcome to the great state. And welcome to one of the finest universities in the whole United States, Southern Methodist.” He said the groundbreaking “is an important milestone” and “the beginning of a journey. We take the first step toward the construction of this presidential center, which will be a dynamic hub of ideas and actions based upon timeless principles.”

Participating in the groundbreaking for the Bush Presidential Center were (left to right above) David S. Ferriero, Archivist of the United States; Ray Hunt, co-chair of the Bush Foundation Finance Committee, SMU trustee and chairman of Hunt Oil Company; Caren Prothro, chair of the SMU Board of Trustees; Alan Lowe, director of the Bush Presidential Library and Museum; Robert Stern, architect for the Bush Presidential Center; R. Gerald Turner, president of SMU; Condoleezza Rice, chair of the Bush Institute Advisory Board and former U.S. Secretary of State; George W. Bush; Laura Bush; Dick Cheney, former U.S. Vice President and former SMU trustee; Mark Langdale, president of the George W. Bush Foundation; Don Evans, co-chair of the Bush Foundation Finance Committee and former U.S. Secretary of Commerce; Michael Van Valkenburgh, landscape architect for the Bush Presidential Center; the Rev. Mark Craig, SMU trustee and pastor of Highland Park United Methodist Church; and Jake Torres, SMU student body president.

The Center includes the George W. Bush Presidential Library and Museum and the George W. Bush Institute.

> Read the whole story from SMU News
> Dignitaries visit with SMU students
> Watch video of the groundbreaking video
> See a slideshow of groundbreaking day slideshow
> Learn more about SMU and the Bush Center
> Visit the official Bush Center website

$2 million in gifts to provide scholarships for Chinese students

Two gifts totaling $2 million will provide SMU scholarships for outstanding students from China.

A gift of $1 million from Helmut Sohmen of Hong Kong, alumnus of SMU’s Dedman School of Law and a university trustee, will continue the endowed scholarship program he established for Chinese lawyers to study at the Dedman School of Law.

Sohmen is chairman of the BW Group of companies, one of the world’s largest privately owned shipping fleets.

And a $1 million gift from the Barachel Foundation of Dallas will establish a scholarship fund to enable Chinese undergraduate students to attend SMU.

“Providing leadership for a global society is critical, and these gifts will help advance SMU’s goal to educate international leaders,” said SMU President R. Gerald Turner. “Enabling students from around the world to study and share ideas together benefits all students – those from other countries as well as those from the United States.”

The Sohmen program provides scholarships covering tuition, fees and living stipends for Chinese lawyers pursuing master of law degrees in comparative and international law at the Dedman School of Law. The program has graduated more than 1,500 lawyers from 80 countries.

The $1 million gift from the Barachel Foundation will provide scholarships for outstanding Chinese undergraduate students who come primarily from rural areas of China. The goal of the Barachel Foundation Scholarship Fund at SMU is to educate Chinese leaders who will make important contributions to the future of their country.

> Read the full story from Bob Miller of The Dallas Morning News

Four named 2010-12 Altshuler Distinguished Teaching Professors

SMU's 2010-12 Altshuler Distinguished Teaching ProfessorsFour outstanding educators have been named 2010-12 Altshuler Distinguished Teaching Professors by SMU’s Center for Teaching Excellence. This year’s honorees are Johan Elverskog, Religious Studies, Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences; Randall Griffin, Art History, Meadows School of the Arts; Roy Heller, Old Testament, Perkins School of Theology; and Donald VandeWalle, Management and Organizations, Cox School of Business.

The four new members of SMU’s Academy of Distinguished Teachers will join returning members Crista DeLuzio, History; Robert Howell, Philosophy, Thomas Knock, History; and Thomas Osang, Economics (all in Dedman College).

Each year since 2001, the Altshuler Distinguished Teaching Professor Awards recognize four SMU faculty members for their commitment to and achievements in fostering student learning. “These are faculty whose concerns for higher education go beyond classroom boundaries and often the boundaries of their own discipline,” according to the CTE website. “They represent the highest achievement in reaching the goals of higher education.” The professorships are named for SMU Trustee Ruth Altshuler.

Each recipient receives a $10,000 award and membership in SMU’s Academy of Distinguished Teachers for the two years of their appointment as Altshuler Professors. Members participate actively with other members of the Academy to address issues in classroom teaching.

Read more about the new Altshuler Professors under the link.

Above, the new Altshuler Professors were honored by the SMU Board of Trustees during its May meeting (left to right): Roy Heller, Johan Elverskog, SMU Trustee Ruth Altshuler, Donald VandeWalle and Randall Griffin.

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