South Dakota Businessman gives $400 million to Establish Mayo Clinic for Pediatrics
South Dakota businessman T. Denny Sanford continued his philanthropic work in pediatrics and medicine with a $400-million gift to Sanford Health, previously known as the Sioux Valley Hospitals & Health System. The healthcare system, which currently includes 24 hospitals, 115 clinics, and 12,000 employees, will expand over the next several years into a world-class medical and research institution.
Sanford’s ultimate goal is the creation of a Mayo Clinic-like facility that focuses on pediatrics. Because of his desire to see Sanford Health “become recognized worldwide for what we have done for children,” a significant part of Sanford’s gift is designated for specific and relevant projects. A new children’s hospital is scheduled to open in 2009 in Sioux Falls, and five other pediatric clinics will subsequently open across the United States through a partnership with the main facility. Other projects include the establishment of a pediatric research institute, an increase in general research, and the eventual creation of 20 specialized facilities in proximity to the main medical center.
Sanford’s previous donations have included a $20-million gift to the Sioux Valley Health System to increase partnership with the University of South Dakota’s School of Medicine and a $16-million contribution to the SVHS to build a children’s hospital.
Mann Foundation Announces $100-million gift for Biomedical Engineering
The Mann Foundation for Biomedical Engineering recently announced a $100-million gift to establish an Alfred Mann Institute for Biomedical Development at Purdue University. The center will facilitate commercialization of biomedical technologies that are being developed by university researchers, allowing new products to quickly reach the market and to improve human health effectively.
“The goal is to increase the likelihood that biomedical technologies are brought to full development with speed and sufficient capital,” says Mann Foundation founder and chairman Alfred Mann.
Initially, the institute will pinpoint two promising biomedical technologies per year and help shape them into commercial products by providing intellectual property analysis and project selection, market analysis, product development, and creation of an exit strategy. Once it becomes fully functional, the center will have the capacity to analyze up to six technologies each year.
The institute will also foster university-private sector partnerships in Indiana, linking technologies with companies interested in using them to create marketable products. “We are participating in a new model of university technology transfer for a new century,” notes Purdue president Martin C. Jischke. The partnerships will have a “tremendous impact” on the well-being and health of people everywhere, he said.
The Valencia, California-based Mann Foundation works with universities to develop biomedical equipment that will increase both life expectancy and life quality. The Alfred Mann Institute at Purdue is the third of 12 development centers that the philanthropic organization intends to build on university campuses across the globe.
Philanthropists Collectively Donate $65 million to KIPP
The Houston-based Knowledge Is Power Program (KIPP) recently announced a successful end to the eight-month “quiet” phase of its $100-million fundraising drive, during which time the charter school network raised $65 million. With grants coming from a number of different foundations and individuals, KIPP officials noted, it was the largest collective donation in the history of the charter school movement.
Major donors included Hines Interests ($10 million), Laura and John Arnold ($10 million), Houston Endowment ($10 million), the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation ($10 million), the Walton Family Foundation ($8.7 million) and the Doris & Donald Fisher Fund ($5.3 million).
KIPP plans to use the $100 million to expand its reach in the Houston area, eventually increasing its network fivefold to encompass 42 charter schools and 21,000 students. The KIPP model, which emphasizes longer school days and a longer school year, has already achieved major successes with its students, most of whom are from either low-income or at-risk communities.
“The KIPP model is marvelously successful on a small scale at getting students through high school and into college,” says Houston Endowment president Larry Faulkner. “By supporting this ambitious expansion, we will see if the model can be taken to scale within a single market.”
Steven Seleznow, program director of state and district partnerships in education for the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, notes that traditional public school systems should not see charter schools as a threat. “Our aim is to lift all boats,” he says, “to create more and better public, free options for parents and children who need them the most.”