BLOOMINGTON, Ind. — Paying tribute to outstanding volunteer leaders in philanthropy, Indiana University and the IU Foundation have honored five individuals as this year’s Partners in Philanthropy.
IU President Michael A. McRobbie and IU Foundation President Gene Tempel presented the awards Thursday evening (Oct. 27). The awards recognize the key role that volunteers play in the university’s philanthropic achievements, especially at the highest levels of service.
“We are paying tribute to five individuals who have also helped shape the future of this university,” McRobbie said. “They create opportunities for IU students to achieve their highest intellectual aspirations. They provide leadership that enables IU’s schools and programs to advance toward the frontiers of research and education. Theirs is the spirit of excellence that thrives across this university.”
The Foundation presented three awards for exceptional volunteers and friends of IU: the Cornerstone, Keystone, and Herman B Wells Visionary Awards. Earlier this year, nominations for each award were requested from the IU community, and the honorees were selected by a committee of representatives from Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis, IU Bloomington, and IU’s regional campuses.
“These recipients demonstrate how volunteerism and philanthropy become a way of life,” said Tempel. “Consistently giving of one’s time, talents, and resources creates an example -- a tradition -- that others will follow.”
Mark E. Hill received the Cornerstone Award, which recognizes individuals whose volunteer role has been instrumental in the success of a single IU philanthropic initiative for a campus, program or school.
Hill’s support of the School of Informatics and Computing since its inception in 2000 has been vital to its remarkable success and innovation. With a background in technology and entrepreneurship, and a record of philanthropic service in Indiana at large, Hill has played a pivotal role in what is among the fastest-growing programs at the university and the first of its kind in the nation. A founding member and former chair of the Dean’s Advisory Council, Hill also headed the school’s first capital campaign. His leadership and generosity were critical to the 919 E. 10th Street Renovation Fund, which supported the revamping of the Informatics East building, furnishing much-needed room to grow and promoting the school’s enterprising spirit. Hill’s involvement with the School of Informatics has also led him to the classroom: as an adjunct professor, he taught a popular course on Entrepreneurship Informatics.
The Keystone Award, which recognizes those individuals who have shown exemplary volunteer leadership through multiple IU fundraising campaigns, was presented to Monika H. and Peter H. Kroener and to Robert A. Borns.
Even with their determination that IU be known globally, Monika and Peter Kroener never forget that its impact must be felt individually. Their commitment to increasing the university’s international presence is matched by their much-noted hospitality to guests and students from around the world. Key volunteers for the schools of music and business, they were founding members of the Jacobs School of Music Dean’s Advisory Board and are members of the Kelley School of Business Dean’s Council. They established the Monika and Peter Kroener Dean’s International Fellowship in Music and Business, which supports graduate students in those programs, and were instrumental in launching Kelley’s International Business Forum. Their involvement with the Matching the Promise campaign led to both the Kelley School and the campus exceeding their fundraising goals.
Robert A. Borns’ dedication and leadership have ensured that IU houses one of the leading Jewish studies programs in the nation. The Robert A. and Sandra S. Borns Jewish Studies Program cultivates every feature of a thriving academic environment -- scholarships for students and support for faculty research, as well as funding for conferences, workshops, and visiting speakers. A major sponsor of the Rosenfeld Chair in Jewish Studies, Borns also established the Friends of the Jewish Studies Program group. In the past decade, his generosity, in combination with his ability to inspire others to follow his lead, has made possible the creation of more than a hundred undergraduate scholarships and numerous internships, travel grants, and graduate fellowships.
Herman B Wells Visionary Award
James T. Morris received the Herman B Wells Visionary Award, which recognizes those whose lifetime volunteer commitment to IU reveals a deep understanding of the power of philanthropy to shape the future of the institution and a determination to see that future realized.
Morris has put his dedication to IU at the heart of his achievements in public service. His work with global humanitarian causes (he was executive director of the United Nations World Food Programme for five years) is paired with a desire to act as ambassador for IU, and for the state as a whole. Currently president of Pacers Sports and Entertainment, Morris has been instrumental in raising hundreds of millions of dollars for the IU School of Medicine and is a key supporter of its program launched to fight the spread of AIDS in Kenya. He served in the campaign to institute the Myles Brand Chair in Cancer Research, now the largest endowed chair in the School of Medicine. With Morris as co-chair, the Matching the Promise campaign surpassed its goal by raising more than $1 billion.