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$10 million gift will retain and recruit world-class researchers to University at Buffalo
Date:6/13/2008

BUFFALO, N.Y. -- The University at Buffalo announced today a $10 million gift from Jeremy M. Jacobs, his wife, Margaret, and family to establish the Jacobs Institute, which will support research and clinical collaboration on the causes, treatment and prevention of heart and vascular diseases.

The gift was made in honor of Lawrence D. Jacobs, M.D., a world-renowned medical pioneer and the late brother of Jeremy Jacobs. Lawrence Jacobs was chair of the Department of Neurology in UB's School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences and chief of neurology at Buffalo General Hospital at the time of his death. He was perhaps best known by the world and the medical community for his successful breakthroughs in the treatment of multiple sclerosis.

This gift will fund the retention and recruitment of world-class researchers, educators and clinicians to the University at Buffalo and to the Western New York heath-care community.

Jeremy Jacobs is chairman and CEO of Delaware North Companies, a worldwide leader in hospitality and one of the largest privately held companies in North America. He is also chairman of the UB Council, an alumnus of the UB School of Management and a long-time philanthropic leader.

The Jacobs' gift is the largest single gift ever to UB and makes the Jacobs family the university's most generous donor, with gifts totaling $18.4 million. This historic $10 million gift to UB demonstrates the Jacobs family's confidence in UB's ability to greatly enhance the quality of life and economic prosperity of the Western New York community through groundbreaking medical research and the resulting economic impact of its research.

"I support the vision of bringing the brightest minds together in one place to focus on clinical care, research and teaching with an entrepreneurial spirit to solve challenging problems. It is my hope that

this gift will help provide an avenue for establishing Buffalo as a world-class center for state-of-the-art research, treatment and teaching in the areas of vascular and heart diseases. With the collaboration of the Jacobs Institute, UB and Kaleida Health, we have the opportunity to dramatically change health care in Western New York for the better," said Jacobs.

The gift is dependent upon the building of a dedicated facility to be the center of excellence in cardiology, vascular disease and neurology. The gift challenges UB, Kaleida, the Jacobs Institute and other community organizations to work together to bring the vision to reality.

The cutting-edge work of researchers, educators and clinicians recruited by the Jacobs Institute will greatly enhance the research and education programs of UB's School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, putting the UB medical school on the map with other major medical research institutions regionally and nationally.

In praising the generosity and vision of Jeremy and Margaret Jacobs, UB President John B. Simpson said the gift will produce research, education and clinical-care synergies that are essential for major advancements in health care.

"The commitment from Mr. and Mrs. Jacobs and family is significant on a number of levels," Simpson said. "First, this is a powerful example of how our community can work together to both nurture and attract world-class medical research to Western New York. Second, it demonstrates a commitment to reinventing our community to be competitive in the 21st century.

"The gift also is an extraordinary endorsement of the goals of UB 2020, our plan to transform the university while also improving our region's quality of life," Simpson added. "Recruitment and retention of talented researchers, educators and clinicians is critical to our goal to produce groundbreaking medical research that will have a transformative effect on health care and generate economic benefits that can only come from the work of our nation's best research universities. On behalf of UB, we thank the Jacobs family for their generosity and unwavering community spirit."

The Jacobs gift will also be the catalyst for a community-wide effort to raise additional funds needed to build and support creation of a Global Vascular Center on the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus. The center will be a first-of-its-kind, multi-dimensional medical institute focused on the full spectrum of vascular health care, and will bring together physicians, researchers and educators to address heart and vascular diseases.

Similar university-research and clinical collaborations in Cleveland, Pittsburgh and Minneapolis have produced renowned centers of medical excellence that have dramatically improved health care in those regions while generating tremendous economic benefits.

James R. Kaskie, president and CEO of Kaleida Health, said the generosity of the Jacobs family is an important first step to developing community-wide support to enhance Kaleida Health's strong

clinical plan by integrating research and teaching through the targeted recruitment and support of world-class faculty and clinicians.

"Kaleida Health is investing $80 million to go along with the $65 million in state funding to integrate the Millard Fillmore Gates Circle and Buffalo General Hospitals onto the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus," Kaskie said. "This historic investment, a physician-led initiative, will create the clinical engine for our community. On behalf of the 10,000 Kaleida Health employees, we thank the Jacobs family for their commitment to building a better health-care-delivery model for Western New York."

The Jacobs family has long provided philanthropic leadership in the Buffalo Niagara region. Pamela Jacobs Vogt, wife of the late renowned neurologist Lawrence D. Jacobs, M.D., noted: "Since Larry died in 2001, we have been looking for a suitable tribute to him and his work. The creation of the Jacobs Institute will radically improve health care, research and teaching in Western New York and is a fitting tribute to his life, his work and his memory."

Jeremy Jacobs and the Jacobs family have long invested in higher education, providing significant financial support for a number of UB's most important academic initiatives. The Jacobs family has funded scholarships for exceptional undergraduates in the UB Honors College, provided financial aid to female student-athletes, and created flexible funds for innovation and special needs. In the mid-1980s, Jacobs gave more than $1 million to help fund two academic chairs and support a UB School of Management MBA program in China, the first academic partnership between an American university and that evolving nation. A School of Management building on UB's North Campus bears the Jacobs family name, in honor of his longstanding generosity.

In 2000, Jacobs donated the architectural landmark Butler Mansion to UB for use as a continuing education and training facility. Renamed the Jacobs Executive Development Center by the university, the building has been used for business education and has become an important regional presence for the university.


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Contact: John DellContrada
dellacon@buffalo.edu
716-361-3006
University at Buffalo
Source:Eurekalert  

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