The Corporation of Brown University recently completed its fall meeting on campus. Over the course of the past several days, members of the Corporation engaged with students and faculty and discussed progress on Building on Distinction, Pathways to Diversity and Inclusion, and the University's comprehensive BrownTogether fundraising campaign. The meetings were full of enthusiasm and appreciation for the work of the Brown community.
A highlight of the weekend was the dedication of Friedman Hall. The magnificent renovation of this historic building has been transformational for the campus. Friedman is our most heavily used classroom building, and the interior spaces provide the excellent instructional facilities Brown students and faculty deserve. The addition of convening, study and social spaces has made Friedman even more active and vibrant, and, most importantly, the building is now fully accessible. The Corporation and the Brown community joined in thanking Richard and Susan Friedman for their generosity in making this critically important academic project such a success.
In committees and meetings of the whole, the Corporation engaged in a broad set of strategic issues of importance to Brown. These included the report of the evaluation team of the New England Commission of Higher Education, which visited the campus in the spring as part of our decennial re-accreditation, and whose report will be released to the community shortly. Other topics of discussion included faculty hiring and diversity, graduate student unionization, strategic priorities in the area of the vice president for research, planning for improvements in health and wellness and residential life, and fundraising progress under BrownTogether.
In other sessions, the Corporation heard updates from the architects for the Performing Arts Center and the Sharpe House relocation, and began the process of architect selection for the health and wellness center and residence hall project. Brown received approval from Providence's City Plan Commission in April to move forward with plans for the center at 450 Brook St.
Students engaged in informal discussion groups with members of the Corporation on Thursday, and graduate students met with members of the Committee on Campus Life on Friday morning. This was part of the continued effort to increase communication and engagement between members of the Corporation and the student body. Members of the faculty had lunch with some members of the Corporation on Friday, and the Board of Fellows met with the officers of the Faculty Executive Committee.
Also this weekend, new Trustees were welcomed to the Corporation. The new Trustees are: Preetha Basaviah '91 MD'95, Pablo Legorreta P'21 and Perri A. Peltz '82 P'19 P'22. Viet Nguyen '17 will serve a two-year term as a New Alumni Trustee, following the annual election process in which current students and recent alumni participate directly. Biographical information for these individuals and other members can be found on the Corporation website:
ACCEPTANCE OF GIFTS, ESTABLISHMENT OF ENDOWED POSITIONS AND OTHER ACTIONS
The Corporation formally accepts gifts and pledges in the amount of $1 million or more. At this weekend's meeting, the Corporation formally accepted gifts and pledges made since the May Corporation meeting. Totaling more than $89 million, these generous commitments provide critical support to Brown's academic priorities, including the performing arts, the Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs, endowed professorships, financial aid, graduate education, athletics, and support for a range of academic programs. The success of BrownTogether to date and in the future builds from gifts of many dollar amounts, and all are essential to our success and deeply appreciated.
The Corporation also approved the establishment of a number of endowed positions in recognition of gifts having been received. These include the following:
--the Robert J. and Nancy D. Carney University Professorship in Brain Science, with the generous support of Robert J. Carney '61 LHD'18 and Nancy D. Carney LHD'18;
--the Agnes Gund Visiting Professorship/Professorship of the Practice in Art and Social Justice, with the generous support of Agnes Gund LHD'96 hon. P'88, P'93, GP'18; and
--the Mencoff Family Professorship, with the generous support of Samuel M. Mencoff '78, P'11, P'15 and Ann S. Mencoff P'11, P'15.
In addition, in recognition of gifts having been received, the Corporation approved the naming of a number of University spaces. These include:
--a classroom in Friedman Hall as the Neff Family Classroom, with the generous support of a gift from Nancy F. Neff '76, P'06, P'14 and Daniel A. Neff, Esq.'74, P'06, P'14;
--the Nancy B. Turck '68 AM'68 and D. Patrick Maley '67 Middle East Studies Suite and the Elizabeth P. Stultz Study in Stephen Robert '62 Hall at the Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs, with the generous support of gifts from Nancy B. Turck '68 AM'68 and D. Patrick Maley '67;
--the Football Office Suite at the Olney-Margolies Athletics Center as the Catena Football Office Suite in honor of Thomas G. Catena, M.D. '86 DMS'16 hon., with the generous support of an anonymous donor;
--the viewing deck at the Ted Turner Sailing Pavilion as the Lemley Family Deck, with the generous support of a gift from Wayne C. Lemley PhD'80;
--the Berman Study Lounge at the Olney-Margolies Athletics Center, with the generous support of a gift from Christopher J. Berman '77 LHD'07 hon., P'08, P'09;
--the Smith Defensive Coordinator & Cornerbacks Office at the Olney-Margolies Athletics Center in memory of Reid E. Smith '91, with the generous support of a gift from James A. Ratigan '91;
--the DeSutter '92 and Paglia Family Linebackers & Defensive Line Office in the Olney-Margolies Athletics Center, with the generous support of a gift from Matt DeSutter '92 and Donna Paglia;
--the Massa Director of Football Operations Office in the Olney-Margolies Athletics Center in memory of Gerald L. Massa '77, with the generous support of a gift from an anonymous donor;
--the Mehran Family Director of Sailing Office at the Ted Turner Sailing Pavilion, with the generous support of a gift from Alexander Mehran, Jr. '03; and
--the John Mollicone Lobby at the Ted Turner Sailing Pavilion, with the generous support of a gift from Dayton T. Carr '63. Finally, the Corporation approved the appointment of the following faculty to named chairs:
--Jeffrey Bailey, Mencoff Family Associate Professor of Translational Research;
--Jason Harry, Hugh Pearson Professor of the Practice of Technology and Entrepreneurship;
--Judy Liu, Sidney A. Fox and Dorothea Doctors Fox Assistant Professor of Ophthalmology, Visual Science and Neuroscience;
--Eric Morrow, Mencoff Family Associate Professor of Biology; and
--Richard Rambuss, Nicholas Brown Professor of Oratory and Belles Lettres.