Letter from the Vice Dean: Celebrating Generosity

Dear friends,

This is one of my favorite times of the year. It is in this issue of Harvard Public Health that we publicly celebrate the generosity of friends and supporters of the Harvard Chan School—those who make possible the world-class education and research that are carried out here and the resulting public health achievements that improve lives for millions of people worldwide. We are deeply grateful to all who have so generously contributed to the Harvard Chan School and supported its important public health mission.

I am pleased to report that fiscal year 2016 was another banner year for fundraising. Among other areas, the past several months saw the establishment of a number of financial aid funds, which will help the School attract the most outstanding candidates regardless of their economic situation, and the creation of endowed professorships in various School departments. A few significant gifts deserve special mention:

The Lee Kum Kee family of Hong Kong contributed $21 million to establish the Lee Kum Sheung Center for Health and Happiness, as well as two endowed professorships. The center will advance research into the role of happiness and other components of well-being in physical health.

An anonymous charitable foundation committed $10 million to support investments in learning and leadership, including establishing the Julio Frenk Professorship of Public Health Leadership. The funds will also increase support for doctoral candidates in the Department of Nutrition and for students in the Doctor of Public Health program, as well as provide a fellowship for students in the Occupational and Environmental Medicine program.

Faculty member John Quelch, DBA ’77, SM ’78, and his wife, Joyce A. Huntley Quelch, made a gift of $5 million to endow the Huntley Family Professorship of Health Care Management. The incumbent will foster joint research and educational programs between the Harvard Chan School and Harvard Business School.

Longtime donors Russ and Judy Carson renewed their commitment to the Carson Family Scholarship Program with a gift of $500,000 and also contributed $100,000 to the Julio Frenk Doctor of Public Health Fellowship Fund.

A gift of $450,000 from United Technologies Corporation supports research under the direction of Professor John Spengler focused on “green buildings” and human health. And the Department of Nutrition met the goal for the establishment of an endowed fellowship fund in the department that will be named in honor of Professor Walter Willett upon his retirement.

Other major contributions made it possible for faculty and researchers to tackle a remarkable scope of projects, a testament to the thoughtfulness and extraordinary generosity of the friends and supporters of the Harvard Chan School. Your commitment to the mission of improving the health of every person—every adult and every child, no matter where they live or who they are—continues to fill me with gratitude and hope. Your generosity spells the success of the School’s efforts to address some of the most challenging public health issues of our time. And your continuing partnership will serve as the enduring legacy of the compassion and humanity that you so warmly share with the world.

With my deepest gratitude,
Michael W. Voligny
Vice Dean for External Relations