Gempesaw Accepts Largest Donation in School History

The announcement was made during a dinner in midtown Manhattan.


Derrell J. Bouknight, News Editor

At a dinner in midtown Manhattan Wednesday night, St. John’s President Conrado “Bobby” Gempesaw announced that the University was the recipient of the $15 million donation.

The gift was the largest in the school’s 148-year history.

Gempesaw announced during his fourth annual State of the University address earlier in the day that the figure would be presented later in the night. The gift was announced in front of 80 attendees, including guest of honor Maurice R. “Hank” Greenberg, Chairman and CEO, C.V. Starr & Co. Inc, and Chairman of the Starr Foundation.

According to the University, the gift will establish the Maurice R. Greenberg Leadership initiative at the School of Risk Management, Insurance and Actuarial Science, which is part of the Peter J. Tobin College of Business.

One of the largest private foundations in America, the Starr Foundation has given away more than $3 billion since 1955. Its goal is to provide financial support to institutions throughout the world in educational, medicinal research, healthcare and public policy settings.

“At St. John’s University, we know our mission serves to transform the lives of our students,” Gempesaw said during his speech. “This remarkable gift from The Starr Foundation will further position the School of Risk Management, Insurance and Actuarial Science and our graduates to make an indelible mark on the insurance profession for generations to come.”

Half of the total endowment fund will go towards student scholarship awards. 33 percent will help in supporting faculty members, and 17 percent will be set aside for leadership endowment, according to the University.

Full and partial scholarships will be provided for students in the School of Risk Management through the Maurice R. Greenberg Leadership Initiative, while new programs, resources and professional development will be targets of the Maurice R. Greenberg SRM Industry Leadership Endowment and Starr Foundation SRM Faculty Support Endowment, respectively.