Naming Ceremony for the IU South Bend Judd Leighton School of Business and Economics

University Grill
Administration Building, 1st Floor
IU South Bend
South Bend, Indiana
September 21, 2012


As the historian and philanthropic studies scholar Peter Hall once observed, “no single force is more responsible for the emergence of the modern university in America than giving by individuals and foundations."1

There can be little question that philanthropy has helped to make the American system of higher education the best in the world. At the heart of every philanthropic act are people who choose to make a difference in other people’s lives.

This spirit of generosity has, time and again, left an indelible mark on Indiana University.

Celebrating The Generosity of The Leighton Foundation

Today, we once again celebrate that generous commitment to philanthropy and we note the latest way in which it is helping to transform Indiana University.

I am delighted to announce today that the Judd Leighton Foundation has made an extraordinarily generous gift of $4 million—the largest single donor gift in the history of the South Bend campus. The gift has been made to the School of Business and Economics, which will hereinafter be known as the Judd Leighton School of Business and Economics at IU South Bend.

We truly are deeply grateful for this extraordinarily generous gift and for the transformative impact it will have on Indiana University, the South Bend campus, and, of course, on the School of Business and Economics and all of its students.

On behalf of Indiana University, I extend our wholehearted thanks to Jim Keenan, the president and CEO of the Judd Leighton Foundation, who is with us today, and from whom you will hear in just a few moments.

Integral Support for Undergraduate and Graduate Students

This generous gift will be used to support undergraduate scholarships and graduate fellowships, faculty development, and to support staff within the Judd Leighton School of Business and Economics.

The Judd Leighton Scholarships will be given to academically distinguished high school students with leadership potential who are enrolled in the School of Business and Economics and are majoring in business or economics as part of IU South Bend’s Honors Program. Judd Leighton Fellowships will be awarded to highly-qualified graduate students enrolled in one of the three master’s programs in School of Business and Economics.

This gift will touch many future generations, creating opportunities that will lead to their success in their educations and in their lives.

In conjunction with the gift, the Leighton Foundation has also offered a challenge grant of $1 million to help fund the completion of the renovation of this Administration Building which now houses the Leighton School of Business and Economics.

Judd Leighton: A Legacy of Generosity

Judd Leighton, as most of you know, was a longtime South Bend resident and an extremely influential business leader. Along with his wife, Mary Lou, he was also a much-admired philanthropist known for his support of education, the arts, and health care.

He helped found the Community Foundation of St. Joseph County. Several centers affiliated with South Bend’s Memorial Hospital bear the Leighton name, including the Leighton Heart and Vascular Center, the Leighton Trauma Center, the Leighton Health Plex, Memorial Leighton Kids Museum, and the Memorial Leighton Senior Center.

The Leightons were also great supporters of Minnesota’s Mayo Clinic, where they provided support for research laboratories, established the Leighton Auditorium and Cardiovascular Seminar Room, and established an endowed professorship in Cardiovascular Diseases and Hypertension.

IU South Bend and The School of Business and Economics

This most recent generous gift from the Leighton Foundation will further enhance a campus and a program that are already thriving.

Everywhere you look at IU South Bend, there is evidence of growth, engagement, and collaboration.

Accessibility and affordability have long been two of the hallmarks of IU South Bend.

This year alone, approximately $44 million in financial aid is available to IU South Bend students in the form of scholarships, grants, work-study opportunities, and low-interest loans.

Students here on Indiana University’s third largest campus benefit from small class sizes, personal attention, and individualized learning opportunities. And once they graduate, more than 70 percent of them stay in the area to live, work, raise their families, and strengthen this community.

The School of Business and Economics provides an exceptional business education. Among the school’s faculty are accomplished researchers, award-winning educators, and highly experienced professionals from the world of business. The school has been cited by The Princeton Review as an “outstanding business school.” The school’s undergraduates recently scored better than 95 percent of students who took the business field examination administered by Educational Testing Service, the world’s largest nonprofit educational testing and assessment organization. And the school is accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business, which is something that only 10 percent of business schools worldwide can claim to have as a qualification.

The Leighton Foundation’s gift to the School of Business and Economics serves to remind us of the commendable and enduring aims of the school, its students, faculty, staff, and supporters.


So, once again, let me express to the Leighton Foundation how deeply grateful we are for this extraordinarily generous gift.

This gift will allow the School of Business and Economics to build on its many accomplishments and its fine standards. This gift will provide to future generations of students and scholars opportunities and possibilities that are beyond calculation.

Thank you very much.

Source Notes

  1. Peter Dobkin Hall, as quoted in Noah D. Drezner, Philanthropy and Fundraising in American Higher Education, John Wiley & Sons, 2011