CONTACT: STEVE SANDERS
Vice President Development Programs
UI Foundation News
500 Levitt Center for University Advancement
Iowa City IA 52242
Release: March 1, 1999
Carver Trust of Muscatine funds UI medical research endowments
IOWA CITY, Iowa -- A $3 million gift from the Carver Charitable Trust
to the University of Iowa Foundation as part of the UI College of Medicine
capital campaign will create endowments to support biomedical researchers.
Last summer the Muscatine-based organization gave $3 million to help
fund the college's new Medical Education and Biomedical Research Facility,
now under construction. The two Carver Trust commitments are among the
leadership gifts to the College of Medicine's $25 million facilities and
endowment campaign, "Seeking Knowledge for Healing." The new
building is now under construction and should be completed in 2001.
"The research faculty whose programs will be supported with the
proceeds from this endowment award are considered by the Carver Charitable
Trust to be three of the College of Medicine's preeminent scientific investigators,"
said Troy Ross, executive administrator of the Carver Charitable Trust.
"This type of support should serve to recognize their outstanding
research accomplishments and the potential they possess to continue to
contribute substantially to their respective fields."
Three renowned UI scientists have been nominated for the Roy J. Carver
Endowed Chairs in Biomedical Research: Kevin Campbell, Ph.D.; Beverly Davidson,
Ph.D.; and Michael Welsh, M.D. The scientists nominated for the endowed
Campbell, professor of physiology and biophysics and Howard Hughes Medical
Institute investigator, is a pioneering scientist whose studies of muscular
dystrophies and calcium channels have garnered international awards. A
UI faculty member since 1981, Campbell and his colleagues have identified
the molecular genetic defects that lead to muscular dystrophy. In other
research, Campbell and his colleagues are investigating gene therapy for
some types of epilepsy.
Welsh, professor of internal medicine, physiology and biophysics, Howard
Hughes Medical Institute investigator, and director of the UI Cystic Fibrosis
Center, is a prolific researcher whose pioneering studies of cystic fibrosis
have attracted international attention. A member of the UI faculty since
1981, Welsh leads a team of researchers that is studying the molecular
defect in cystic fibrosis and ways to correct the defect in human airway
cells. He is also conducting promising research into the hereditary form
of high blood pressure.
Davidson, associate professor of internal medicine and director of the
Gene Transfer Vector Core Facility, has been on the UI faculty since 1994.
She and her colleagues have developed the UI's nationally recognized program
in vascular biology. Davidson is also a leader in use of gene transfer
in the study and treatment of Batten's Disease, a neurological disease.
"These productive scientists are known as innovators, collaborators
and mentors," said Robert P. Kelch, dean of the UI College of Medicine.
"The Carver endowed chairs, the new biomedical research laboratory
and the long-term support from the Carver Charitable Trust will help establish
a foundation for the next generation of interdisciplinary biomedical research
The endowments for the research professorships will be invested through
the UI Foundation. The annual spendable earnings from the endowments will
be used for salary support and direct research expenses.
The college and the UI Foundation recognized the Carver Trust's earlier
gift to the campaign by naming the research center on the top two floors
of the new facility as the Roy J. Carver Molecular Science Research Center.
Before his death in 1981, Muscatine industrialist and philanthropist
Roy J. Carver contributed nearly $10 million to the University of Iowa
in support of scholarships, professorships, medical research and Iowa athletics.
Also, the Roy J. Carver Pavilion at the University of Iowa Hospitals and
Clinics is named in recognition of his generosity to the hospitals.
This most recent gift to the medicine capital campaign brings to more
than $27 million the total the Carver Charitable Trust has given to UI-related
projects such as biomedical research, technology in the UI Libraries, a
summer engineering institute, facilities improvements, student scholarships,
and grade school literacy.
The UI Foundation is the preferred channel of support for private contributions
to all areas of the University of Iowa. Foundation staff work with alumni
and friends to provide funds for facilities improvements, scholarships,
professorships and other forms of support for the UI.