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University of Iowa Foundation News Release

April 10, 2006

Photo: Michael J. New. Click here for a high-resolution version of the image.

Former UI Foundation President New Remembered For Billion-Dollar Achievement

Michael J. New, president of the University of Iowa Foundation from 1998 to 2005 -- a tenure spanning the University's historic "Good. Better. Best. Iowa" fund-raising campaign -- died Sunday, April 9, 2006, at University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics. He was 63.

New, a 30-year foundation staff member, is survived by his wife, Mary; daughter Jennifer New, her husband Andrew Epstein, and their children, Isabella and Tobias Epstein, and mother-in-law Myra Aggen, all of Iowa City; his mother, Phyllis New, of Port Charlotte, Fla.; brother Casey New of Middleton, Wis.; and sister Miriam Sexsmith of Vernon, British Columbia.

"Michael New has left an extraordinary legacy of dedication and achievement," said Charles M. Kierscht, the foundation's interim president and chair of its board of directors. "His leadership of our billion-dollar 'Good. Better. Best. Iowa' campaign raised the bar for fund-raising productivity, and his devotion to the University of Iowa was second to none. He was a true friend to alumni and contributors across the nation, and he led his staff with purpose, integrity and gentle good humor. We'll measure future UI Foundation leaders by Michael's high standards."

UI President David Skorton said, "I learned so much from Michael and counted him among my most valued colleagues and mentors. His intelligence, insights, and advice were invariably on target, and I know I'm a far better fundraiser today because of his wise counsel. Michael was a good soul, and he'll be greatly missed." 

New attended the UI, where he earned two degrees: a B.A. in journalism and mass communication in 1964, and an M.A. in sociology in 1967.

His career with the UI Foundation began in 1976, following previous positions as executive coordinator for the Friends of Iowa Public Television in Des Moines (1973-74), and with the UI College of Medicine as assistant coordinator of the Iowa Regional Medical Program. He served as the foundation's associate director of development for the UI's health colleges from 1976 to 1985. 

In 1985 New was named vice president for development programs and after a nationwide search, in 1998 he was selected to succeed Darrell Wyrick as president of the UI Foundation. He served in that capacity until September 2005, when his health required him to step down from active leadership of the organization. He was subsequently named chief development officer, a position he held until his death.

A public memorial celebration will be held on Sunday, April 23, 2006, at 3 p.m. in the fourth-floor Assembly Halls of the Levitt Center for University Advancement on the UI campus.

In lieu of flowers, the family asks that memorial donations be made to the Michael J. New Staff Excellence Fund at the UI Foundation,; to Iowa City Hospice, 1025 Wade Street, Iowa City, 52240; or in support of any area of the University of Iowa through the UI Foundation, P.O. Box 4550, Iowa City, Iowa 52244-4550.

STORY SOURCE: UI Foundation, P.O. Box 4550, Iowa City, Iowa 52244-4550

MEDIA CONTACT: Charles M. Kierscht, 319-335-3305; Writer: Susan Shullaw,

PHOTOS: A high-resolution image of Michael New is available at: web-quality image is available at: