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Winter 2016

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financial updates | News | meeting highlights
upcoming meetings | campus highlights | philanthropy in focus

Dear fellow Trustees,

Welcome to the winter edition of DashBOARD, our quarterly Trustee newsletter with updates on CU Advancement activities, the CU Foundation’s investment performance and private support benefitting the University of Colorado. Our new year is off to a terrific start. We hope yours is, too.

As Valentine’s Day approaches, we are seeing ample evidence that our supporters love CU: In December, donors flocked to our new website, making 3,093 gifts totaling $1.05 million and providing us with our first ever million-dollar month in online giving. (This represents a 29 percent increase in dollars raised online compared to December 2014.) And Trustees are living into their pledge to make giving to CU among their top philanthropic priorities during their years of service as a Trustee. In the last calendar year, Trustees collectively donated more than $4 million to CU.

I would like to acknowledge the tremendous dedication of my colleagues throughout CU Advancement that inspire our donors to make their gifts. Together we strive every day to connect donor passions with university priorities.

As they say, love is in the air. So let’s take time to recognize what’s in our hearts: We are Trustees of CU Advancement, inspiring others to support the University of Colorado and its many people, programs and places that are improving our lives today and ensuring a brighter tomorrow.

Warm regards,

Jack Finlaw
CU Foundation President and CEO

Private Support


thermometer graphic$194M
fy 2016 total
gift graphic-1.02%
over fy 2015
stock exchange graphic31,298
fy 2016 gifts
total-support-fall-2016These figures represent all philanthropic support to CU, both money contributed through the Foundation and through the university.


FISCAL YEAR 2016 THROUGH Dec. 31, 2015

stock exchange graphic-3.83%
stock exchange graphic-2.77%
stock exchange graphic-1.61%
S&P 500


Visit for more information and analysis about our investment performance and outlook, as well as an informational guide to CU’s endowments.


As of Dec. 31, 2015

dollar sign graphic$1.28B
dollar sign graphic$1.05B
gift graphic2,431


The balance of the Long Term Investment Pool as of Dec. 31 is $1.28 billion, while CU’s collective endowment (a subset of the LTIP) is $1.05 billion, representing 2,431 individually directed endowments. Also during fiscal year 2016 so far, $41.5 million in gifts and endowment income have been distributed by the Foundation and applied to CU programs.

CU Foundation and Advancement News

Introducing Fundriver: The Foundation is excited to begin using a powerful investment and accounting software tool called Fundriver, which will bring efficiency and speed to our endowed fund management, and allow our colleagues to provide donors robust reports on gift-fund balances.

Bringing new call centers online: CU Denver and UCCS are opening new call centers, allowing students from those campuses to connect directly with alumni and donors to seek their donations. CU Denver’s call center, which works on behalf of CU Anschutz, debuted Feb. 2, while the UCCS center is scheduled to start Feb. 15.

February Trustee Meeting Recap

Many members of the Board of Trustees attended our winter reception the evening of Thursday, Feb. 4, and our Friday, Feb. 5, meeting, both hosted at the University of Colorado Denver.

After opening remarks by CU Foundation Board of Directors Chair James Linfield and a summary of recent CU highlights by President Bruce Benson, Vice President of Government Relations Tanya Kelly-Bowry discussed the current state legislative session and the university’s priorities on that front. While CU’s allocation from Colorado’s budget is challenged by the downward trajectory of state support for higher education—consistent with national trends, and accentuated in Colorado by structural budget limitations such as the Taxpayer Bill of Rights, or TABOR—Kelly-Bowry pointed to promising interactions with legislators as well as public outreach efforts, such as CU Advocates and the All Four Colorado campaign, that help CU maintain influence in the legislative process.

Jack Finlaw and Johnnie Ray followed to discuss recent CU Advancement progress. In the first seven months of fiscal year 2016, donors contributed $194.1 million in private support to CU, down just 1.02 percent over the previous year, despite the market downturn and increased economic turbulence of the past several months. Promising positives include a sharp increase in recorded estate gifts (more than $37 million so far in FY16) and increase in important fundraiser activity metrics, such as donor visits, that bode well for future results. Investment Committee Chair Earl Wright concluded the early morning session by noting that CU’s 10-year endowment-investment return has enabled $113 million more in endowment appreciation than would have been realized had our performance mirrored peer averages.

New CU Denver Chancellor Dorothy Horrell led the next session with remarks that highlighted CU Denver achievements and activities as it pursues its aspiration to be one of Denver’s top assets. Capping off the morning, two winners of recent CU Denver Business Plan competitions talked about the genesis of their startup companies, and Jake Jabs—namesake of the CU Denver Business School’s Jake Jabs Center for Entrepreneurship—told engaging stories about his modest upbringing, his love for American values and the value of taking entrepreneurial risks, drawn from Jabs’ own experience as founder of American Furniture Warehouse. “Entrepreneurs don’t do it for the money,” Jabs told attendees. “They do it because they enjoy what they’re doing, and they’re contributing back.”

2016 Trustee and Director Meetings

Thursday, May 5, Trustee reception at UCCS

Friday, May 6, Trustee meeting at UCCS

Wednesday, June 8, Director meeting in Denver

Thursday, Aug. 11, Trustee reception at CU Anschutz

Friday, Aug. 12, Trustee and Director meetings at CU Anschutz

Thursday, Nov. 17, Trustee reception at CU-Boulder

Friday, Nov. 18, Trustee and Director meetings at CU-Boulder

Campus Private Support Highlights

CU Anschutz

The Colorado Trust Chair in American Indian Health in the Colorado School of Public Health, held by Spero M. Manson, MD, PhD, was made possible by a $3 million gift from The Colorado Trust.

With a $2.5 million gift, the Hewit Family Foundation is supporting Alzheimer’s disease research.

Karen (’92) and Edward (’59) Skaff made a gift of $250,000 to establish the Skaff Endowed Scholarship Fund in the Skaggs School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, with future plans to add an additional $2 million from their estate.

Donald Bennallack (’47, MD ’50) made a $2 million future commitment from his estate, and gave an additional $100,000 gift in current funds, each to support scholarships for medical students.

The ALSAM Foundation made a $1 million gift to support the L.S. Skaggs Professorship and a state-of-the-art imaging mass spectrometry tool in the drug discovery and precision medicine program.

The Ronald and Carol Moore Family Foundation contributed $500,000 to advance melanoma research at the CU Cancer Center.

Heather and Jimmy Mulvihill committed $500,000 in support for the Johnson Depression Center’s endowment campaign.

Robert Seavy (’82) completed a 1,900-mile “Remember the Future” bicycle ride from Pueblo, Colorado, to Burlington, Vermont, in October, raising more than $112,000 from 55 donors for research at the Rocky Mountain Alzheimer’s Disease Center. He and his wife, Julie (’84), both lost parents to the disease.


Elaine Baskin and Ken Krechmer created the Jack Baskin Endowed Chair in Technical Interoperability and Standards in honor of Elaine’s father, who was an engineering student at CU-Boulder from 1936-38. Their $4 million bequest may be used to establish one or more new endowed chairs as part of the Interdisciplinary Telecommunications Program (ITP), a first-of-its-kind program within the College of Engineering and Applied Science that integrates law, policy, business and engineering.

Donors neared a $1 million private support goal for the Professional Mentorship Program Endowment at the Leeds School of Business. Over the last five years, more than 2,000 students have participated in the program, which develops student engagement with community and alumni partners.

Bruce and Martha Clinton, through the Clinton Family Fund, made a pledge of $150,000 to the College of Music to support academic residencies in honor of Daniel Sher, the former dean. Their gift ensures that three professional development experiences, such as last fall’s Cleveland Orchestra residency, will occur in 2017, 2019 and 2021.

CU Denver

A bequest of $331,000 is establishing the Grover W. Hall, Jr., Memorial Endowed Engineering Scholarship in the College of Engineering and Applied Science. Hall, who retired as vice president of technical operations for Lockheed Martin’s astronautics division after 39 years with the company, was a first-generation college student and an advocate for the value of higher education. The bequest is a legacy of his lifetime commitment to ensuring that talented students have the financial assistance they need to surmount obstacles to their progress.

The College of Architecture and Planning benefitted from two significant gifts:

  • A grant of $155,000 from The Richard H. Driehaus Foundation Fund at the Chicago Community Foundation provides operational support to the Center for Advanced Research in Traditional Architecture (CARTA), the first program of its kind in the world.
  • A comparable gift from Don and Maria Johnson is funding the Colorado Building Workshop (part of the college’s Design/Build Program), and study abroad opportunities with the Finnish Initiative.

Xcel Energy contributed $55,000 to the Business School’s Global Energy Management program to promote public education and outreach.

The ongoing campus-wide scholarship campaign brought in gifts of $384,745 during the fourth quarter. Leading donors included the Denver Scholarship Foundation, the Reisher Family Foundation, the Gorniak Endowed Memorial Fund and the Asian Chamber of Commerce.


Helen Clement created a $3.4 million bequest commitment to establish the Clement Family Foundation Scholarship Program Endowed Fund that will support undergraduate students who pursue careers in a medical field.

Chancellor Pam Shockley-Zalabak hosted the inaugural members of the 1965 Main Hall Society, which honors the gifts of UCCS’ most generous lifetime donors. The 40 named members have donated at least $500,000 to the university; additional donors at this level chose to remain anonymous.

Donors so far have given more than $56,000 to support the Officer Garrett Swasey Scholarship Fund that honors the UCCS police officer who died in the line of duty in November.

With $150,000, Michael Lanagan (CU Denver ’78) established an endowment to honor his late wife, Sally Roetzel Lanagan (CU-Boulder ’67). The Sally Roetzel Lanagan Professional Development Endowment will fund leadership training as part of the broader efforts of the Karen Possehl Women’s Endowment scholarship program that helps women earn degrees despite significant obstacles. In 2013, Michael donated Sally’s wardrobe to the Women’s Resource Agency in Colorado Springs to assist women who benefit from KPWE.

Lt. Col. Dona Hildebrand (CU-Boulder ’47) established a $1.5 million endowment in honor of her late husband, Col. Floyd “Hildy” Hildebrand, to fund 12 scholarships for non-traditional students.

For the #GivingTuesdayUCCS campaign on Dec. 1, more than 900 individual donations—more than a 1,000 percent increase over the previous year—triggered an additional anonymous $40,000 donation for scholarship support.

Anonymous donors initiated the Pay It Forward Endowed Fund with a $100,000 current-use gift and an estate commitment of $1 million that will fund scholarships in various academic programs. The donors will supplement their gift by volunteering, tutoring or working 10 hours each semester in the Colorado Springs community.

Philanthropy in Focus

Giving is personal, professional for CU Denver director of grants

Valerie BrownFor more than a quarter century, Valerie Brown has made gifts to support students from diverse backgrounds, making their education more affordable and attainable.

“If these students are willing to take the chance and put in the hours, they can make it,” Brown, a director of grants for CU Denver Advancement, says.

Read more about Brown’s efforts.