Robert Larner grew up in Vermont, one of seven children of a roofer. After winning a state debate championship, he attended the University of Vermont on a scholarship. Then he attended UVM’s medical school. After serving in World War II he built a medical practice in southern California. His practice was successful, but what made him wealthy was his knack for making commercial real-estate investments in the booming Los Angeles region.
He never forgot his Vermont roots, and indeed made UVM his main beneficiary when he became a generous philanthropist. In 2015-2016, Larner earmarked $95 million to the university that minted his career. This inspired Vermont to name its medical school for him. It was the first time a med school has ever been named for an alumnus.
- University of Vermont announcement, uvm.edu/~uvmpr/?Page=news&&storyID=23418