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Director of Development
College of Liberal Arts
UI Foundation News
500 Levitt Center for University Advancement
Iowa City IA 52242
Phone: (319) 335-3305 or (800) 648-6973

Release: Sept. 29, 2000

$2.4 million Stanley fund will benefit University of Iowa arts programs

IOWA CITY, Iowa -- A gift made a number of years ago to the University of Iowa Foundation for the UI College of Liberal Arts will benefit the college’s new Division of Performing Arts and other units in the college, thanks to an Iowa family with a generous history of support for UI arts programs.

A $1 million pledge was established in 1987 by E& M Charities, a charitable support organization created by the late Elizabeth M. Stanley and C. Maxwell Stanley of Muscatine. The pledge was completed in 1996 and the fund has grown to more than $2.4 million.

It will be used to create the Elizabeth M. Stanley Professorship in African Art and the Elizabeth M. Stanley Professorship in the Arts, each of which will be permanently endowed at the level of $500,000. The remaining funds will be used to create the Elizabeth M. Stanley Performing Arts Endowment. This endowed fund, directed to the UI’s new Division of Performing Arts, will support performing arts productions and activities of the UI department of dance, School of Music, and department of theatre arts.

"We are delighted to be able to recognize my parents’ love for the arts at Iowa by the creation of these new funds," said David M. Stanley, the couple’s older son and current president of E&M Charities. "We are particularly pleased to be able to assist the College of Liberal Arts as its new Division of Performing Arts makes its debut."

Linda Maxson, dean of the College of Liberal Arts, explained that the two new Stanley professorships provide much-needed funding to aid in faculty recruiting and retention. "The competition nationwide for the best teachers and scholars is growing more intense every day, and having resources such as endowed professorships to attract, retain and reward outstanding faculty members is invaluable," she said. "And to have these positions created in the arts, an area of the college that depends very heavily on private support, is immensely important to our mission of excellence in teaching, research, outreach and service."

David Nelson, who was named head of the college’s Division of Performing Arts in August, explained that the Stanley gift has provided a tremendous boost at a very critical time. "We are extremely grateful to the Stanley family for this generous gift, which will not only benefit our students and faculty, but also is a gift to the people of the state and region," he said. "This endowment is going to support programs that bring the performing arts to the community, such as our annual Dance Gala, the Iowa Summer Rep program in the department of theatre arts and a variety of musical performances. We’re a brand-new division, and this endowment provides flexible, start-up funding of the most valuable kind."

The Stanley family’s history of support for the university began more than 40 years ago, and their generosity has extended to UI programs ranging from the arts and global studies to business and athletics. Max and Elizabeth Stanley were avid patrons of the arts, and the UI Museum of Art’s Stanley Collection of African Art is one of the most impressive such collections in the nation. Like his parents, David Stanley, who earned two degrees from the UI, has been an active UI volunteer and supporter for many years, and he is a lifetime honorary director of the UI Foundation.

The UI Foundation is the preferred channel for private contributions to all areas of the university. Foundation staff work with alumni and friends to generate funds for scholarships, professorships, facilities improvements, equipment purchases, research and other UI initiatives.