SMU broke ground Sept. 12 on Harold Clark Simmons Hall. (L-R) R. Gerald Turner, SMU president; Annette Caldwell Simmons ’57; David J. Chard, Simmons School dean; and Michael M. Boone ’63, ’67, SMU board chair.

SMU broke ground Sept. 12 on Harold Clark Simmons Hall. (L-R) R. Gerald Turner, SMU president; Annette Caldwell Simmons ’57; David J. Chard, Simmons School dean; and Michael M. Boone ’63, ’67, SMU board chair.

SMU broke ground Sept. 12 on Harold Clark Simmons Hall, the second building for the Annette Caldwell Simmons School of Education and Human Development. The ceremony follows a gift of $25 million from Harold C. and Annette Caldwell Simmons ’57 in February 2013 to fund the new building and support three new endowed academic positions. The new facility will be named in honor of Mr. Simmons at Mrs. Simmons’ request, in recognition of his lifelong commitment to education.

“This new building will support the growing impact and leadership of the Annette Caldwell Simmons School of Education and Human Development,” said SMU President R. Gerald Turner. “The generosity of Harold and Annette Simmons reflects their wisdom and foresight in supporting programs that expand human potential and achievement. This facility is a fitting tribute from Annette in memory and honor of Harold’s many achievements and his devotion to education.”

Situated on the SMU campus along Airline Road, Harold Clark Simmons Hall will be a three-story, 40,000-square-foot academic building that will be home to The Budd Center for Involving Communities in Education, the Teacher Development Studio and the Department of Teaching and Learning. The facility also will include classrooms, labs, faculty and administrative offices and conference rooms.

An architectural rendering of Harold Clark Simmons Hall

An architectural rendering of Harold Clark Simmons Hall

“Harold Clark Simmons Hall represents a generous commitment to the teachers and children of our region,” said David J. Chard, Leon Simmons Endowed Dean of the Simmons School. “It will enable the Simmons School to help teachers optimize their impact on children’s education. It also will serve as the hub of our community-based programs, allowing us to expand our understanding of the relationship between schools and the communities they serve.”

“The innovative programs of the Simmons School, including those to be housed in the new Harold Clark Simmons Hall, have the potential to influence the direction of American education,” said Paul W. Ludden, SMU provost and vice president for Academic Affairs.

In 2007 Harold and Annette Simmons made a historic $20 million gift to SMU, which established endowments for the School and provided funding for the School’s first new building, Annette Caldwell Simmons Hall. The gift created an endowed graduate fellowship fund and an endowed deanship and faculty recruitment fund.

Their combined gifts of $45 million to the School make the commitment from Harold and Annette Simmons among the largest to SMU’s Second Century Campaign, also making them among the most generous donors in SMU’s 100-year history. Previous gifts include the endowment of four President’s Scholars and the creation of the Simmons Distinguished Professorship in Marketing in the Cox School of Business.