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Drake launches campaign to become national leader in higher education

October 5, 2010
David Maxwell
President David Maxwell announces the campaign at the summit.

Drake University recently announced the launch of a $200 million
capital campaign designed to propel the University to its place as one
of the nation's very best institutions of higher learning. "¨"¨

The public phase of the distinctlyDrake campaign, which will span
four more years, kicked off with a Volunteer Leadership Summit on Oct. 1 that
included more than 300 members from Drake boards and committees in a
celebration of philanthropy. View photos of the summit in an online gallery.

"¨"¨"Thanks to the leadership and hard work of many, we are poised to
build upon a vibrant and stable foundation and envision an extraordinary
future for Drake University," said Don Fletcher, BN'67, chair of the
University's Board of Trustees. 

"¨"¨"Drake
University is becoming increasingly recognized as one of the very best
universities of our kind in the country by our colleagues at other
colleges and universities," Fletcher added. "With that recognition comes
responsibility -- responsibility to serve as a national model for
exceptional learning, for best practices and for service to the nation."


News Photo
Joan Middleton, ED'63, GR'77, speaks at the center of the summit's blue stage.

Drake President David Maxwell said, "Fulfilling our vision to be one of
the best institutions of higher education in the United States requires
achieving specific objectives -- goals that mean we need to raise
approximately $200 million, which is really a starting point.

"We already have received more than $74 million in gift commitments
from donors who are passionate about the quality of the Drake
experience," added Maxwell, who has served as president of Drake since
May 1999.

Maxwell said the following distinctlyDrake priorities will enhance the University and Drake experience for students, faculty and staff:

  • Attracting and empowering the best and brightest students through $50 million for scholarship endowment
  • Attracting and retaining the finest teachers, mentors and scholars
    through 26 endowed faculty positions at $26 million to $50 million
  • Improving and enhancing physical facilities, technology and resources on campus through $50 million to $85 million
  • Broadening perspectives through innovative and expanded interdisciplinary centers through $15 million to $18 million
  • Build on collective financial strength through the Drake Fund through $3.5 million to $4 million per year


News Photo
Campaign co-chairs Larry Zimpleman, Peggy Fisher and Jim Hubbell III prepare to address the crowd.

In addition to Maxwell, the three campaign co-chairs, who are members of
the Drake Board of Trustees, spoke at the Volunteer Leadership Summit:
Jim Hubbell III, chairman of Hubbell Realty Co.; Peggy Fisher, FA'70, who is co-owner and chief strategic and operating officer
of the Stelter Co. in Urbandale; and Larry Zimpleman, BN'73, GR'79, chairman, chief executive officer and president of
Principal Financial Group. "¨"¨

Hubbell noted that Drake had been preparing for the announcement of distinctlyDrake
for three years. "The Board of Trustees, the administration, faculty
and deans, as well as many of Drake's closest friends and alums have
devoted their time, talents and wisdom, as well as their financial
support to bring us to this announcement weekend," he said.

"We are so
proud of what Drake does for its students, the community and society at
large, and we see this campaign as a way to enhance and leverage
Drake's impact. We are excited about being public with the campaign and
being able to involve our students, their parents, our alums, and our
many friends and supporters in this effort."

Zimpleman said he sees the campaign as a way to enhance the ties
between the University and the city. "I have always believed that Drake
and Des Moines have a special and mutually supportive relationship," he
added. "My being involved with the Drake campaign is a way for me to
help to assure Des Moines that Drake will remain a vibrant institution,
which will make Des Moines a better place for everyone."

Fisher said she immediately accepted the offer to co-chair the
campaign because of her total commitment to the University. "My Drake
experience made a huge impact on my life and for that I owe Drake a
great debt," she added. "I came to Drake for an education and stayed
for a lifetime.

"As an active member of the community, I understand the
immeasurable importance of Drake to Des Moines. The opportunity to help
lead the way to secure the financial resources Drake needs to achieve
our vision of becoming one of the best institutions of higher learning
in the United States is an honor!"


Fireworks
Dazzling fireworks lit up the night.

Drake held a reception and dinner Friday night for major donors and capped a pivotal
day in its history with a blue-and-white fireworks display in Helmick
Commons. View photos of the event and firework show in an online gallery.
 

"¨"¨As part of the campaign, Drake is inviting alumni, students,
faculty, staff and friends to share their Drake love stories, featured
on the distinctlyDrake website, YouTube at youtube.com/godrakebulldogs and Facebook at www.facebook.com/drakeuniversity.

Love stories can be submitted on the distinctlyDrake website or sent to love@drake.edu. "¨"¨The video booth will be available for two weeks. View a video on how to use the booth.