UM Tops $170 Million in Fundraising for FY 2011

Donations from alumni and parents help UM close out fiscal year with nearly an 8 percent increase.

Coral Gables (July 29, 2011) — Bolstered by significant increases in donations from alumni and parents, UM closed out its fiscal year with a nearly 8 percent increase in fundraising. As a result, UM has surpassed the $170 million mark despite a still-sluggish economy that has seen philanthropy decrease in certain areas around the nation.

The University raised $171,985,577 in total private cash, gifts, and grants for fiscal year 2011, a 7.9 percent increase over last year.

The amount includes nearly $15.5 million in alumni donations, an increase of 51.7 percent over the previous fiscal year. It also includes $8.1 million contributed through parents of current UM students, a more than 86 percent increase.

Calling the University’s fundraising efforts “robust,” Sergio M. Gonzalez, senior vice president for University Advancement and External Affairs, said continued support from the institution’s existing donor base, coupled with gifts from a new segment of philanthropists—newly connected alumni and young, successful entrepreneurs eager to invest and partner in UM initiatives—helped propel the institution to a lucrative fundraising year.

Charity Navigator, the largest independent evaluator of charities in the U.S., recognized UM in 2010 for the 10th consecutive year with its highest 4-star rating for successful fundraising and financial management. In addition, between fiscal year 2002 and 2010, UM rose from 54th to 34th place in the Council for Aid to Education’s ranking of fundraising among private and public institutions.

“The uptake this year is demonstrative of the success we’ve had with our strategy during the down years of the economy of continuing our communication and engagement with our donors about our needs and priorities,” Gonzalez said. “We understood during those difficult and challenging years that some folks were not able to give at the continued level at which they were giving or to increase their giving, but we continued our dialogue about our collective goals and ambitions, knowing that when things got better we would pick up where we’d left off. This year shows the strategy has worked.”

Also critical to UM’s fundraising success in 2011 were new multi-year commitments totaling more than $218 million in gifts of $100,000 or more.

“These commitments, many of which are multi-year pledges, are focused investments in areas that have been identified as priorities for a future campaign,” Gonzalez said.

Among them: a $5 million donation from the Ted and Todd Schwartz Family Foundation to create a new Center for Athletic Excellence and a $20 million lead commitment from the Fairholme Foundation that will help build a new Student Center Complex.

Those gifts from our friends and supporters, Gonzalez said, along with others directed to research, academic, and clinical initiatives, will help us achieve our goal of being “the next great American University.”

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