February 07, 2013 — Coral Gables — The University of Miami has announced the creation of the Matheson Distinguished Professorship in Architecture, which will be held by School of Architecture Dean Elizabeth Plater-Zyberk.
“The Matheson family’s generosity has had an immeasurable impact on our institution and on our community, and thankfully, that legacy will continue for generations more at our University,” said University of Miami President Donna E. Shalala.
The Mathesons, a family whose roots in Miami stretch back to the early 1900s, have been an important part of the University of Miami’s history as well, dating from 1974, when Malcolm Matheson donated the land and house for the University of Miami’s President’s Residence. The house, located on Old Cutler Road in Coral Gables, served as the President’s Residence for President Henry King Stanford, Edward “Tad” Foote II, and Donna E. Shalala, until 2011. At that time, the University used proceeds from the home’s sale to build a new President’s Residence, now known as Ibis House, at Four Fillies Farm, a university residential community where other faculty live. Located farther south on Old Cutler Road in Pinecrest, Four Fillies Farm was donated to the University by the late U.S. Senator and UM alumnus Frank Smathers Jr. in 1989.
Additionally, proceeds from the sale of the former Matheson home are funding much-needed academic initiatives at the University, including four distinguished professorships in the College of Arts & Sciences, and the newly named Matheson Distinguished Professorship in Architecture. The Distinguished Professorship is the first of its kind in the School of Architecture, and will help recruit and retain top architecture faculty. Dean Plater-Zyberk led a team of designers in the creation of Ibis House, which is LEED-registered.
Recently, the University’s Otto G. Richter Library acquired another Matheson family treasure, The Finlay B. Matheson Collection, which includes photographs, architectural plans, maps, and books of South Florida, and more specifically, Key Biscayne, in the early 20th Century.
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