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Private Donations to School of Business Campaign at UAlbany Top $5 Million

Eight New Gifts Totaling $1.1 Million Push Campaign Past Midway Goal

rendering of new School of Business building

The new School of Business building promises to serve as a hub of learning and innovation in commercialization and entrepreneurship. (Rendering Courtesy Perkins+Will)

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ALBANY, N.Y. (November 15, 2010) --

The University at Albany announced eight new gifts to the School of Business campaign today, National Philanthropy Day, pushing total private support to more than $5 million and exceeding the halfway point of the campaign’s $9.75 million goal.

Gifts from 1,475 donors, including individuals, corporations and foundations, total $5,024,365, with more than $1.1 million raised for the School’s new building itself through endowment and capital funds. The donations also support academic programs, faculty research, and student scholarships.

"These gifts are testimony to the tremendous support UAlbany receives from our local business community as well as our School of Business  alumni," said UAlbany President George M. Phillip. "They are also a reflection of the vast potential of the School’s new facility, which will enhance our outstanding School of Business and advance the economic vitality of our region and state."

J. Spencer and Patricia Standish

Former Albany International Corp. Chairman of the Board J. Spencer and Patricia Standish.

"We are grateful to our alumni for making a wise investment in the future of the School of Business. This is especially gratifying, since they are not only loyal to their school, but also because they are among the most savvy investors in the world. Our alumni clearly understand that our long-term vitality depends not only on physical capital, (i.e., the $64 million School of Business Building), but also on financial and human capital. We plan to use these resources to support talented students and faculty," said School of Business Dean Donald Siegel.

Eight recent gifts totaling $1.1 million pushed the campaign total over $5 million.

J. Spencer and Patricia Standish, Joy and Steven M. Zelin '84, and Stacy E. Bash-Polley '89 top the list of recent pledges, with the Standishes, Zelins, and Bash-Polley giving $250,000 each.

J. Spencer Standish, former chairman of the board of Albany International Corp., is director emeritus of the University at Albany Foundation. He served as the Foundation's president for many years and has been honored with its Citizen Laureate Award as well as UAlbany's Distinguished Service Medal and Medallion awards. Patricia Hunter Standish is an alumna of The College of Saint Rose. A retired English teacher, she was a lecturer at Saint Rose and Siena College. Mr. and Mrs. Standish are well known in the Capital Region for their support of higher education and medicine.  Once completed, the atrium of the new School of Business will be named for the Standishes. The Standish Room in the Science Library also honors the couple.

Steven M. Zelin '84 earned a bachelor's degree in accounting from UAlbany in 1984, and is a senior managing director of The Blackstone Group in the Restructuring & Reorganization Group. He holds an MBA from New York University’s Stern School of Business where he currently serves as chairman of the Dean’s Executive Board. Prior to working at Blackstone, he was a Partner at Ernst & Young, LLP. Zelin has served as a member of the School of Business Dean’s Advisory Board since 2002. Joy Zelin, a SUNY Buffalo graduate, was formerly an advertising account executive.

Stacy E. Bash-Polley '89, who earned a bachelor's degree in business administration from UAlbany in 1989, and an MBA from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, has made two pledges that total $250,000. Bash-Polley is a partner and managing director at Goldman Sachs & Company, where she is co-head of fixed income sales in the Americas. She was recently named the second most powerful woman in finance non-banking in the world by US Banker.

Marinus '73 and Michelle Henny '73 donated $125,000. Marinus Henny, who goes by Nick, earned a bachelor's degree in accounting from UAlbany in 1973. He is vice chairman and CFO of Universal Music Group, Inc., and served as a member of the University at Albany Foundation Board of Directors from 2000-2004. He is married to Michelle (Gaspard) Henny, who earned a bachelor's degree in nursing from UAlbany in 1973.

Joan D. Rosenthal '76, who graduated from UAlbany in 1976 with a bachelor's degree in accounting, donated $100,000. She is retired as a managing director, Global Economic & Policy Research, from JP Morgan Chase. Rosenthal received the UAlbany Excellence in Alumni Service Award from the UAlbany Alumni Association in 2004.

Michael '83 and Janis Weilheimer '84, have made a $100,000 donation. Michael Weilheimer, who was a business major at UAlbany, is Vice President of Eaton Vance Management, one of the oldest investment management firms in the U.S.

Patricia A. Caldwell '75, who earned her MBA from UAlbany in 1975, gave $50,000. She is a partner and managing director at Gordian Group LLC, and is one of four partners who founded the company in 1988. She has often served as a member of the honorary committee for the Women's Networking Events. Caldwell received the UAlbany Excellence in Alumni Service Award in June 2006.

Nicholas Anacreonte '92, who earned a bachelor's degree in accounting from UAlbany in 1992, has donated $25,000 to create the Rose C. Anacreonte Endowed Scholarship. He is the founding partner of Chatham Capital. Anacreonte is a certified public accountant and chartered financial analyst.

Steven Zelin, Bash-Polley, Rosenthal, and Caldwell are members of the School of Business Dean's Advisory Board. Rosenthal and Anacreonte are members of the University at Albany Foundation Board of Directors.

In addition to these individual gifts, the James S. McDonnell Foundation recently made a five-year grant of $378,375 to Associate Professor of Information Technology Management Sanjay Goel to study how to reduce time spent at traffic stops. His research indicates that coordinating traffic patterns and signals could minimize vehicle wait times at intersections, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and ease driver frustration.

In May, the University unveiled the design for a new state-of-the-art School of Business building, which will advance the School as a hub for commercialization, entrepreneurship, and community connections. Designed by the Perkins+Will architectural firm, it will feature technologically advanced classrooms and meeting spaces and include four collaborative entrepreneurship research centers – on technological entrepreneurship, social entrepreneurship, cyber security, and institutional investment management. It will also have a trading room on the first floor with Bloomberg terminals.

The University was allocated $54 million in state support in the 2008-09 New York State budget for construction of the state-of-the-art academic and research facility, which is expected to cost $64 million.

European CEO Magazine recently selected UAlbany’s School of Business as the Most Innovative Business School in the Northeast Region of the U.S.  The Princeton Review ranks the School’s M.B.A. program No. 2 in the nation in opportunities for women.

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