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Chicago Leaders Join Together to Help Fuel Chicago’s Tech Rise With Landmark $150 Million Combined Gift to Illinois Institute of Technology

Craig J. and Janet Duchossois, Michael P. and Elizabeth Galvin, and John W. and Jeanne Rowe Make Commitment to City’s Tech Ecosystem with the Largest Combined Gift in University History
Chicago, IL — October 25, 2019 —

Illinois Institute of Technology (Illinois Tech) today announced a $150 million combined gift from prominent Chicago leaders—including Craig J. and Janet Duchossois, Michael P. (LAW ’78) and Elizabeth Galvin, John W. and Jeanne Rowe, and other visionaries—to help the university drive Chicago’s continued tech rise. 

The total combined gift of $150 million will fund scholarships and new campus facilities to help talented young people from across the Chicago area and throughout Illinois propel the city’s tremendous tech growth. Contributors also include alumni such as the late George J. Kacek (EE ’54, M.S. ’55), for whom a newly renovated residential hall on the Illinois Tech campus will be named.

“This landmark combined gift is a profound investment in our continued role as Chicago’s tech university,” said Illinois Tech President Alan W. Cramb. “This significant commitment will not only fuel Illinois Tech’s central contribution to Chicago’s tech rise, but it will do so by building on our university’s founding mission to provide unmatched opportunity and value to all young people in Chicago.”

Today’s gift represents the largest cumulative gift announcement in the university’s history, the second-largest of which was the $120 million given in 1996 by Robert A. Pritzker and Robert W. Galvin, the late father of current Illinois Tech Board of Trustees Chairman Michael P. Galvin, and their families.

“This combined gift represents the continuation of what my father and so many others have committed: to help make Illinois Tech a critical driver of Chicago’s economic future by unleashing the power of difference to advance technology for all,” Galvin said. “For more than 125 years, Illinois Tech has made it possible for all young people—regardless of means—to discover, create, and invent solutions to many of the world’s most pressing challenges. This collective investment will ensure that Illinois Tech can continue that legacy while helping build an even brighter economic future for this great city and the world.”

Galvin, who graduated from Chicago-Kent College of Law in 1978, is president of Galvin Enterprises, Inc., co-founder of The Galvin Projects and Gore Creek Asset Management LLC, and served under President George H. W. Bush as the assistant secretary of the United States Department of Commerce for Export Administration. Duchossois serves as the chief executive officer of The Duchossois Group, Inc. and treasurer of The Duchossois Family Foundation. Rowe is the former chairman, president, and CEO of Exelon Corporation, and is chairman emeritus of the Illinois Tech Board of Trustees.

“In addition to supporting Illinois Tech’s founding mission, this commitment will help attract many more talented people to come to Chicago and eventually stay and join STEM professions for many years to come,” said Duchossois, a University Regent. “We are proud of our ability to offer world-class educational opportunities here on the South Side of Chicago, and I am confident that investing in Illinois Tech will broaden our ability to help fuel economic growth and innovation for this great city.”

“Illinois Tech was founded to provide all students, particularly first-generation college students, with unparalleled opportunity for upward economic mobility,” said Rowe, a University Regent. “Jeanne and I are proud to help the university continue to meet that special and unique mission, allowing it to be a vehicle for positive change across our city and throughout the world.”

“From the invention of the cell phone to leading the development and evolution of Amazon’s Alexa, we have seen our alumni go on to create the innovations that have defined their generations,” said Illinois Tech Vice President for Institutional Advancement Ernie Iseminger. “This gift will enable us to provide a platform to help the next generation of innovators flourish right here in Chicago.”

Illinois Tech is ranked as the #1 university in the state for lifting students from families in the bottom 20 percent of income to the top 20 percent, #1 in Chicago for mid-career occupational earning power, and a “best value” in education according to the Princeton Review, Forbes, Time, and Money Magazine. Click here for Illinois Tech B-Roll.