News and analysis
August 07, 2017

Gifts Roundup: Zuckerberg and Chan Give $10 Million for Data-Driven Health Research

Elisabeth Fall

Atul Butte, a biomedical researcher and University of California at San Francisco professor, will lead a new institute funded by Mark Zuckerberg and Priscilla Chan and devoted to harnessing computational health science to improve patient care.

A roundup of notable gifts compiled by The Chronicle:

University of California at San Francisco

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and his wife, pediatrician Priscilla Chan, gave $10 million to create the Institute for Computational Health Sciences and to back the work of Atul Butte, a university professor and biomedical researcher who will lead the new institute

Dr. Butte is spearheading an approach to medical research that examines existing, publicly available data to gain insights into health and medicine while protecting patients’ privacy.

Mr. Zuckerberg and Ms. Chan have personally given more than $1.6 billion to nonprofits to date. In late 2015, they established the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, a limited-liability company, to make charitable donations and mission-related investments and participate in public advocacy. They have pledged to give 99 percent of their Facebook stock to the LLC over time.

The Gunnery

Brothers Steve and Jonathan Tisch together donated $10 million to support a variety of projects at the private school in Washington, Conn., which both attended. The money will back a new arts and community center and other construction efforts; recruitment of faculty and students from diverse backgrounds; and leadership and environmental programs for students. Some of the gift will also go toward the school’s endowment.

Steve Tisch is a film producer and the chairman and executive vice president of the National Football League’s New York Giants, which his family co-owns. He graduated from the Gunnery in 1967.

Jonathan Tisch is a co-chairman of the family’s company, the Loews Corporation, which has holdings in hotels, insurance, and oil drilling and transport. He graduated from the prep school in 1972.

A number of family members have attended the Gunnery and donated to the institution over the past 50 years.

Indiana University

Two anonymous donors gave $10 million to endow financial aid for undergraduate and graduate students at the university’s Kelley School of Business and Lilly Family School of Philanthropy. Each school will receive a $5 million endowment.

William & Mary Law School

Dorothy Arthur left $5.2 million for scholarships and programs.

Ms. Arthur, who died in 2015, was the widow of William Arthur, a Virginia Circuit Court judge who died in 2003. Mr. Arthur earned undergraduate and law degrees at the College of William & Mary in 1938 and 1940, respectively.

Ms. Arthur previously gave more than $335,000 to establish an endowment for loan-repayment assistance at the law school, and during their lifetimes the couple backed various funds and projects at William & Mary.

University of Iowa

Ann Gerdin and her children pledged $5 million to renovate the Gerdin Athletic Learning Center. The money will pay for more study rooms, a cafe, and other spaces and support programming for student-athletes in areas such as life skills and leadership development.

Ms. Gerdin and her late husband, Russell Gerdin, founded Heartland Express, a logistics and transportation company.

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