The University of Missouri-St. Louis is announcing Wednesday that it raised a record-setting $31 million in the fiscal year ending June 30. This year’s total was $10 million more than last year and included nine gifts of more than $1 million each.
In a statement, Martin Leifeld, the vice chancellor for university advancement, praised alumni and friends for their commitment to UMSL.
"Our supporters have a growing conviction about the importance and impact of the university in the region and beyond,” Leifeld said. “This generosity also speaks to the success that our alumni are seeing in their own careers and a desire to give back.”
Leifeld also observed that UMSL set another single-year record with the number of $1 million-plus gifts from individuals. Of the nine gifts at that level, seven came from individuals. Alumnus Kirk Richter and his wife, Maureen, were the largest individual givers; they contributed more than $3 million for a new building.
The money raised will also go to support scholarships and financial aid to students, academic programs and faculty, and the Mercantile Library.
UMSL's Chancellor Tom George said in a statement that a strong region requires strong universities.
“UMSL students and graduates dominate the regional work force,” George said. “Their success will increasingly determine our success as a region. Therefore, it’s imperative that UMSL continue to be among the best metropolitan universities in the nation. We are doing that in large part with the outstanding support of our donors – many of whom are our own faculty and staff.”
UMSL holds the license to St. Louis Public Radio. The university's statement about its fund-raising efforts said that St. Louis Public Radio's merger with the St. Louis Beacon last December "also contributed to the record-breaking development numbers, with more than $3 million raised to support the integration."