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Release: Nov. 7, 2001

Carver Trust announces $10 million gift to support UI College of Medicine capital plan

IOWA CITY, Iowa -- A $10 million contribution from the Roy J. Carver Charitable Trust of Muscatine will help fund the University of Iowa College of Medicine's capital improvement plan. The donation to the University of Iowa Foundation represents the largest single gift ever made by the Carver Trust, and brings the Trust's total amount of giving to University of Iowa projects to nearly $45 million.

In recognition of the generous gift, a new College of Medicine building currently in the planning stages will be named the Roy J. and Lucille A. Carver Biomedical Research Building. The Board of Regents, State of Iowa, approved the schematic design for the newly named structure earlier this year. Construction on the $40 million facility will begin in the summer of 2002 and will be completed in 2005.

"We believe that this project embodies the longstanding interest held by the Board of Trustees in providing first-rate research environments for both new scientists and established faculty at the College of Medicine," said Troy K. Ross, executive administrator of the Carver Trust. "This sizeable gift accurately reflects the Trust's commitment to enhancing educational opportunities and seeking to improve the lives of all Iowans through support for biomedical research."

The new building will be the second of three new facilities planned for the health sciences campus. Construction is nearing completion on the first building, the Medical Education and Biomedical Research Facility (MEBRF), the first new academic building for the College of Medicine in more than 15 years. The MEBRF will house the Roy J. Carver Molecular Science Research Center, funded by a $3 million Carver Trust grant in 1998.

During his lifetime, Iowa industrialist and philanthropist Roy J. Carver of Muscatine contributed nearly $10 million to the University of Iowa in support of scholarships, professorships, medical research, the UI Hospitals and Clinics, the Iowa Opportunity Fund, and Iowa athletics. He died in 1981.

Lucille A. Carver attended the UI and in 1972 received the Distinguished Service Award from the UI Alumni Association. A former director of the Carver Pump Company, she currently serves as a member of the board of directors of Bandag Inc. of Muscatine and also served on the University of Iowa Foundation board of directors from 1981 to 1985.

UI President Mary Sue Coleman thanked the Carver Trust for the gift, saying, "We are extremely excited and pleased to accept this tremendous gift from the Carver Charitable Trust. We are facing increasing challenges in providing state-of-the-art research space for our burgeoning biomedical enterprise, and this gift will have a very positive impact on assisting us in creating those essential facilities. We are also indebted to the Carver Trust for continuing its tradition of supporting the University of Iowa's efforts to create excellence in educational opportunities and in biomedical research."

Robert Kelch, dean of the UI College of Medicine, also praised the Carver Trust for its generosity. "Recruitment and retention of outstanding faculty members is key to maintaining first-class teaching for our medical students and for continued success in research that advances scientific knowledge and improves human health," said Kelch, who is also vice president for statewide health services and director of UI Health Care. "It's important to note that the research space in this building will focus on the molecular mechanisms of human diseases, with emphasis in the neurosciences, genetics, and aging.

"Since the initiation of the current capital improvement project, the college's research programs have grown dramatically," Kelch noted. "This growth can be attributed to increased success in research programs of current faculty and the recruitment of more than 30 new investigators over the past four years. This success has led to a scarcity of research space, so this gift is timely as well as wonderfully generous."

The Roy J. and Lucille A. Carver Biomedical Research Building will be a linear extension of the northeast wing of MEBRF, constructed on the site of the current east wing of the Steindler Building, which is scheduled for demolition sometime in 2002. The design of the Carver Biomedical Research Building will continue the thematic use of limestone, copper and glass established in the first building, but the new facility will have its own district boundaries.

The building will have seven levels, including five above ground, and approximately 130,000 square feet of space. A major portion of the building will be devoted to biomedical research laboratories, creating 40 new modules with associated specialized lab support rooms on four floors. College of Medicine administrative offices, including the Office of the Dean, and additional education conference rooms will be located on the first level.

EDITORS AND NEWS DIRECTORS: An artist's conception of the Carver Trust Biomedical Research Building can be down-loaded from the University News Services web site: http://news-releases.uiowa.edu/2001/november/1107carver-big.html

For more information about the Carver Charitable Trust, see http://www.carvertrust.org/