Raising the Stakes

By Norman Boucher / November / December 2004
June 14th, 2007

Get ready. At about this time next year, Brown will likely kick off the biggest fund-raising campaign in its history, one whose goal, $1.3 billion, is more than twice anything that’s come before. 

Until Sidney Frank gave $120 million, University officials were skittish about such an ambitious goal. Senior Vice President for Advancement Ronald Vanden Dorpel ’72 AM says that the Frank gift gives the pre-campaign effort, known as a nucleus fund, an important boost. Before a university officially announces a campaign, it generally spends a year or so trying raise a third of its still-unofficial goal, in this case roughly $430 million. “We’ve still got a long way to go,” Vanden Dorpel cautions, “but I think the Frank gift will clearly help us raise the sights of some other folks we’re approaching.” 

To help direct the campaign staff, Vanden Dorpel, who raised $1.4 billion at Northwestern before joining the University in 2002, recently hired Vice President of Development and Campaign Director Neil Steinberg ’75, the former president and CEO of Fleet Bank in Rhode Island. This is the first major University-wide campaign in memory whose leadership is entirely made up of Brown alumni.

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November / December 2004