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$40 million committed to DePauw’s new School of Business and Leadership

President announces $20 million commitment from Tim and Sharon Ubben ’58 and repurposing of $20 million commitment from Steve and Karen Sanger ’68 

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Following the announcement of DePauw University’s new strategic plan earlier this week, DePauw President Lori S. White announced today that donors have given $40 million to support DePauw’s new School of Business and Leadership.

Sharon W. Ubben and her late husband Timothy H. Ubben, both 1958 graduates of DePauw, committed $20 million in support of establishing the new school.  

“Tim and Sharon’s love for DePauw is seemingly endless,” White said. “This gift reflects not only their generosity, but their collective vision for a DePauw that continues to cultivate skills and competencies that equip our students for leadership in a changing world.”

Timothy Ubben passed away in December. He and Sharon had been loyal supporters of DePauw since their first $26 gift in the 1958 Annual Fund drive. They have endowed many scholarships to improve access for students with demonstrated financial need, including many Posse scholars, in addition to establishing the Timothy and Sharon Ubben Endowed Lectureship in 1986, which has brought 116 globally prominent leaders to DePauw.

“Tim’s gratitude for the role DePauw played in preparing him for his business and philanthropic success filled him until his final days and inspired him once again to help instill leadership skills in students for generations to come,” Sharon Ubben said. “Tim and I have always believed in the power of DePauw to harness the potential of some of our nation’s most talented students. We found it so rewarding to see the impact of our gift, and I wish that Tim were here to see how life-changing this gift will be.”

Throughout his career, Tim believed good leaders were everywhere: “Whether they’re a firefighter or whether they’re a board member at Goldman Sachs, it doesn’t matter,” he said in a November interview at DePauw.

White also announced that the university will apply a $20 million gift from 1968 graduates Steve and Karen Sanger, announced in 2018, to establish the Sanger Leadership Initiative as a cornerstone of the new school, providing curricular and co-curricular opportunities being developed for all DePauw students. The gift also will endow the inaugural Sanger Professor of Leadership, the endowed directorship established for the Initiative and the institution’s first Sanger scholarships for students. 

“DePauw is an institution that prepares leaders the world needs, and we have the vision and kindness of alumni like Steve and Karen Sanger to thank for ensuring that we will continue to do so for decades to come,” White said.

“Thanks to the investments made possible through the Sangers’ generous gift, DePauw will double down on its liberal arts and sciences mission and extend it to the study of business and leadership, and we’ll formalize our track record of producing leaders in business, media, music and the arts.”

“Our vision and goal were always to build upon DePauw’s history and ability to produce thoughtful, engaged leaders,” Steve Sanger said. “With the launch of the School of Business and Leadership, it seemed only natural that our gift would help ensure the new school’s success while creating opportunities for students in any program. Together, we can affirm DePauw’s standing as one of the nation’s leading colleges for preparing students for lives of leadership and service.”

The DePauw School of Business and Leadership will position DePauw as the only top 50 national liberal arts university in the Midwest with a business school, and one of only four in the nation.

To read more about the four pillars of DePauw’s strategic plan, including the vision for the new School of Business and Leadership, visit the newly launched DePauw Bold & Gold 2027 website.




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