A newsletter for Foundation directors and friends of higher education in Maryland

Letter from the President

Dear Friends and Colleagues,


On Saturday, April 18th, more than 700 people came to the XFINITY Center at the University of Maryland, College Park to celebrate Chancellor William E. "Brit" Kirwan and the phenomenal leadership he has displayed in his fifty-plus years of service in higher education. I cannot express enough how thrilling it was to be in the presence of so many friends. We had a wonderful evening and the number of people who came out to show support for Brit was truly astounding.


The evening offered many surprises, such as mascots greeting guests, musical performances by student groups at our institutions, and tribute videos. However, the most meaningful surprise came when USM Foundation Board Director and former chair and member of the USM Board of Regents, Cliff Kendall, announced the newly named William E. Kirwan Center for Academic Innovation. Additionally, the fundraising initiative our staff and committee members took on raised an incredible $3 million to endow the Center. After almost a year of hard work, I could not be happier with the results. Thank you to all of those who supported our efforts, whether as a committee member, a ticket purchaser, or a sponsor. It would not have been the success it was without you.


On another note, I did want to report on the progress of the USM's advocacy efforts. With the Maryland legislative session ending earlier this month, several of the USM's initiatives will be moving forward. The full details can be found hereAs always, please contact me at raley@usmd.edu or 301-445-1941 with any questions or comments.




Leonard R. Raley

February 2015 Investment Office Update

In February, global equity markets rebounded strongly from January's downturn. Better-than-expected economic data from Europe, a rebound in oil prices, an extension to Greece's bailout package, and optimism regarding the European Central Bank's quantitative easing measures caused market sentiment to improve, leading to an increase in risk-taking. The MSCI All Country World Index posted its largest monthly gain since January 2012, climbing 5.6% (including net reinvested dividends), while the MSCI Europe Index advanced 6.3% (also including net reinvested dividends). In Asia, the Nikkei Index reached a 15-year high in February and ended the month with a 6.4% gain. The month's gains were not isolated to the equity markets: segments of the credit markets, such as high yield securities, also appreciated in February, as did other assets such as gold.

University System of Maryland Announces the William E. Kirwan Center for Academic Innovation


The USM Board of Regents has renamed its Center for Academic Innovation to honor the legacy of retiring USM Chancellor William E. "Brit" Kirwan. The announcement of the new William E. Kirwan Center for Academic Innovation was the pinnacle moment of a private celebration honoring Kirwan for his 52 years of service in public higher education. Donors and event guests gave a total of $3 million. The net proceeds will support an endowment fund for the newly named Kirwan Center, which will carry out work focused on academic transformation that strives to meet the challenges of higher education head-on. 


To learn more about the Kirwan Center, please visit their website at www.usmd.edu/cai.

Federal and State Legislators Pay Tribute to Chancellor Kirwan 


In recognition of Chancellor Kirwan's service to higher education in Maryland, United States Congressman Steny Hoyer gave a speech on the House floor highlighting Chancellor Kirwan's many achievements, which can be viewed here, with the full remarks included in the March 18, 2015 House Congressional Record.


On March 20, delegates and senators in both chambers of the Maryland General Assembly also recognized Chancellor Kirwan. House Speaker Michael E. Busch and Senate President Thomas V. "Mike" Miller each gave a tribute to Kirwan. Audio for both tributes can be found here under "Friday, March 20, 2015 Session #1." The tribute from the House can be found at the 8 minute, 18-second mark, while the audio from the Senate can be found at the 10 minute, 23-second mark.

University of Maryland Eastern Shore (UMES) Launches the Sifford Fund with Inaugural Gifts from Tiger Woods and the PGA Tour

In late March, Tiger Woods made the inaugural $10,000 gift to a new fund at UMES that honors the memory of the late Dr. Charlie Sifford. Sifford is best known for being a professional golfer who broke the color barrier on the PGA Tour in the early 1960s, and is one of only three golfers to ever receive the Presidential Medal of Freedom. The PGA TOUR followed suit a week later with a matching gift. The Sifford Fund was established by the late golfer's family and will help provide need-based scholarships to highly talented students who are passionate about golf and are from underrepresented populations in the golf industry. UMES has the unique distinction of being the nation's lone historically black university to offer a bachelor's degree in professional golf management that is accredited by the PGA of America.

Spring 2015
Vol. 9, Iss. 4
In This Issue
USM News Briefs   

Tom Bowling, current vice president for student affairs at FSU, has been appointed interim president. He will assume the role beginning July 1st, when current president, Jonathan Gibralter, departs for Wells College in Aurora, New York. Bowling has been a part of the FSU community since 1976 and has served as vice president for student affairs since 2006. Chancellor Kirwan will soon announce the appointment of the FSU presidential search and screening committee, who will conduct a national search for FSU's next president.


Trends in Philanthropy

Culture is Changing: Fundraising Needs to Change With It


Too often, people focus on cultivating fundraising when they should be focusing on cultivating a culture of philanthropy. In the latter, the approach taken is that everyone is a fundraiser - board, staff, and executive director, because the priority is on relationships rather than money. Click through to read more about how the culture of philanthropy is evolving and to engage in the discussion.

Staff Member News 

We recently bid a fond farewell to Kate Koyfman, who has served as the USM Foundation's Investments Staff Accountant. She joined us in 2011 and played a significant role in moving the Foundation's business services office in a direction that yielded stability and support for staff and administrators alike. Kate has joined Meso Scale Diagnostics, LLC in Rockville, where she will be a Senior GL Accountant. 


We wish Kate all the best! 

Jess Gill

Editor, LeaderNotes