May 11, 2015

Gifts Roundup: $25 Million for Social Entrepreneurship Center

Santa Clara University

Jeff and Karen Miller

A roundup of notable gifts compiled by The Chronicle:

Santa Clara University

Silicon Valley venture capitalist Jeff Miller and his wife, Karen, have given $25 million to Santa Clara University for the newly named Miller Center for Social Entrepreneurship, the university reported.

The goal of the center is to help companies find smart ways to help the world’s neediest people. The money will go toward research, training, and other programs geared to aiding the work of social entrepreneurs and impact investors. Mr. Miller earned a bachelor’s degree from the university in 1973 and an MBA there in 1976.

Martha’s Table

The Horning Family Fund, a donor-advised fund started by real estate developers Joseph and Lynne Horning, is giving land and cash valued at $10 million to Martha’s Table, a social services organization in Washington, D.C., to build a new headquarters for the charity’s many programs, the charity announced last week. Martha’s Table is run by the former head of the Gates Foundation, Patty Stonesifer.

Financier David Rubenstein is also donating $1 million toward the effort.

The charity will need to raise an additional $9 million to complete the $20-million project. The new building is scheduled to open in 2018.

Cincinnati Symphony and Pops Orchestra

Edyth Lindner, the widow of the late Cincinnati financier Carl Lindner, and her children have made a $10-million pledge to support an extensive renovation project for the Cincinnati Symphony and Pops Orchestra concert hall, the organization said. Mr. Lindner, who died in 2011, was chairman of American Financial Group.

Baylor University

Ms. Lindner’s son, Carl Lindner III, and her grandson, Matthew Lindner, also gave $2 million ($1 million each), to endow Baylor University’s film and digital media program, Baylor reported. Matthew Lindner, a film producer who also works for the Cincinnati Film Commission, graduated from Baylor. Carl Lindner is a chief executive at American Financial Group.

Thomas Jefferson Foundation

In addition to his $1-million gift to Martha’s Table, David Rubenstein gave $10 million to the Thomas Jefferson Foundation for restoration of Mulberry Row, the slave quarters at Monticello, the historic home of the third U.S. president, the foundation announced. Mr. Rubenstein previously gave the organization $10 million in 2013.

Sharp HealthCare Foundation

The Amtower family gave $5.7 million to the Sharp HealthCare Foundation to support services for people suffering from brain cancer, reported the foundation. The money will be used to create Laurel Amtower Cancer Institute and Center for Neuro-Oncology, at Sharp Memorial Hospital. The Institute will be named for Laurel Amtower, a San Diego State University English professor who died from brain cancer in 2010.

To learn about other big donations, see our database of gifts of $1 million or more, which is updated throughout the week.

Send an e-mail to Maria Di Mento.