Mason Receives Gifts Totaling $3 Million

Posted: June 5, 2006 at 1:00 am, Last Updated: November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

By Denise St. Ours

In what George Mason President Alan Merten characterizes as a “remarkable succession of leadership support,” the university has received three gifts totaling $3 million in private support.

The gifts will benefit the College of Visual and Performing Arts, the School of Law and the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute.

Among the donors are Milton V. and Carolyn S. Peterson and their family, who donated $1 million for music scholarships. Milton Peterson is founder and chairman of The Peterson Companies, one of the largest privately-owned development companies in the region. Carolyn Peterson serves on the George Mason University Foundation Board of Trustees. Their support of the university spans nearly three decades, with earlier gifts to the arts, public policy and athletics.

Robert A. and Diane Levy committed $1 million to the School of Law. In recognition, the atrium in the school’s John T. Hazel Jr. Hall has been named the Robert A. Levy Atrium. A 1994 graduate of the law school, Levy is a senior fellow in Constitutional Studies at the Cato Institute in Washington, D.C. In 1995, he became the first alumnus to ever contribute $1 million to the university, creating the Robert A. Levy Endowed Fellowships in Law and Liberty.

The Bernard Osher Foundation awarded a $1 million grant to Mason for endowment for the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI), an independent nonprofit organization affiliated with the university and one of a number of university-based lifelong-learning institutes in the nation. OLLI seeks to enrich lives by providing opportunities for adults in their retirement years to explore intellectual and cultural topics and share their talents and experiences.

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