AMES, Iowa – Iowa State University announced a historic commitment of $50 million to the College of Business from Debbie and Jerry Ivy of Los Altos Hills, California. The gift is the largest-ever commitment to the college. In recognition of the couple’s generosity, the college will be renamed the Debbie and Jerry Ivy College of Business, pending approval by the Board of Regents, State of Iowa. Once approved, the Ivy College of Business will be the first donor-named college at Iowa State.
Jerry Ivy earned his bachelor’s degree in industrial administration from Iowa State in 1953 and is currently president and chief executive officer of Auto-Chlor System, Mountain View, California, where Debbie Ivy is also an active member of the executive team. Jerry has been a successful entrepreneur, beginning as a young boy growing up in Minnesota, continuing while attending Iowa State and throughout his professional career. The Ivys and their team have successfully grown Auto-Chlor into a national brand with more than 75,000 customers nationwide. They take pride in offering customers best-in-class service, providing superior cleaning solutions to the foodservice, healthcare and lodging industries.
Previously the Ivys made a generous gift to establish the Debbie and Jerry Ivy Chair in Business currently held by Patricia Daugherty, professor of supply chain management.
“The Ivys’ generosity is a powerful endorsement of the college’s programs, leadership and upward trajectory. This is a transformative gift that will exponentially expand the college’s commitment to provide leading-edge programs and modern learning environments, compete for world-class faculty, and increase student scholarships and other high-impact educational opportunities,” said Iowa State University Interim President Benjamin J. Allen. “As former dean of the College of Business, this is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to return to Iowa State and be part of this landmark moment in the college’s history.”
The gift will establish an endowed fund that will eventually provide approximately $2 million annually designated to the College of Business for short and long-term priorities. The College of Business was established in 1984 and offers nine undergraduate majors, six master’s programs and one doctoral program with five areas of specialization. It has a record enrollment in 2017 with 4,921 students.
“I’d like to express my gratitude to the Ivys for their visionary gift,” said Raisbeck Endowed Dean David Spalding. “The magnitude of their generosity will have a tremendous impact, creating an ongoing resource that will enable us, now and in the future, to strategically invest in current priorities and future aspirations. With all the enthusiasm around our new undergraduate entrepreneurship major and PhD program, we are especially excited to have our college named after such a successful, entrepreneurial family. I am pleased that the Ivy name will be forever associated with the college’s growth and success.”
Funding from the endowed fund will help advance the college’s current priorities and long-term mission. Most immediately, it will build on momentum in several areas, including a groundbreaking entrepreneurship initiative, a supply chain management program already among the best in the world, and a successful new business analytics program – providing scholarships, faculty support and programmatic funding for these and other areas.
In the longer term, the gift will ensure the future excellence and distinction of the college. Funding will support students through scholarships and will also provide them with a range of practical learning experiences. The gift will also enable faculty to develop dynamic classroom curricula and student mentorship, fortify established programs and develop expertise in emerging disciplines, and offer leading-edge technology and facilities.
“Debbie and I value a strong education and feel that Iowa State University and the College of Business provide an exceptional experience for its students,” said Jerry Ivy. “We hope this gift will play a role in preparing our next generation of business leaders, and we want to help support students and faculty who will make a difference today, and far into the future.”
The Ivy gift will contribute to Iowa State University Foundation’s eight-year comprehensive campaign, Forever True, For Iowa State, which seeks to raise $1.1 billion for the university by July 2020.
Watch a video recap of the announcement here.