Donors gave Duke University the largest ever amount in philanthropic gifts and contributions for a third year in a row – $478.3 million – to support areas ranging from global health and the arts to “Big Data” research and renovations of campus landmarks.
The total private giving to Duke between July 1, 2014, and June 30, 2015, was an 8 percent increase over the $441.8 million received in the 2013-14 fiscal year.
“We’re very grateful for another extraordinary year,” said President Richard H. Brodhead. “The generosity of our alumni and friends across a wide variety of areas will yield even more rich and innovative opportunities for our students and faculty to make an impact in communities around the world.”
With the new gifts and pledges, Duke has now raised $2.7 billion toward the $3.25 billion goal of Duke Forward, the university’s comprehensive fundraising campaign that will conclude in 2017. To date, Duke Forward has brought in $307 million to support and endow student financial aid, and $394 million for capital projects and related initiatives.
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The Duke Annual Fund received more than $36.5 million – also a new record – from almost 60,000 alumni, parents, students and friends. The Annual Fund helps support financial aid, faculty support and educational programs for all of Duke's undergraduate, graduate and professional schools, as well as the operations of the libraries, Duke Gardens, Duke Chapel and Nasher Museum of Art.
Significant new commitments in 2014-15 included:
▪ A $20 million grant from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to the Duke Global Health Institute to help educate a new generation of leaders and experts, and build research capacity with partners around the world to address critical health challenges like HIV/AIDS and cancer;
▪ A $13 million gift from Duke alumnus Steve Brooks and his wife, Eileen, to Duke Athletics;
▪ A $9.75 million in gifts and matching funds to support the Information Initiative at Duke, which harnesses Big Data to tackle a range of issues, from the identification of counterfeit art to the early detection of disease;
▪ And $6 million from the Lilly Endowment to support leadership education at Duke Divinity School. The program encourages a theological vision of leadership and supports Christian institutions as they develop current and future leaders.
“Duke’s donors have been incredibly generous,” said Robert S. Shepard, vice president for alumni affairs and development. “Donors are essential to our success in education, research and health care. Without their support, Duke would be unable to achieve its strategic priorities of helping to solve real-world issues.”