Auburn University has announced a $40 million gift from longtime donor and alumnus Raymond J. Harbert in support of its business school.
The gift, which includes a $15 million challenge grant, will be used to create additional eminent scholar and endowed chair positions and recruit and retain top faculty members in areas such as finance, business analytics, and supply chain management; establish the Harbert Investments Center, a research initiative focused on securities and wealth creation, as well as a supply chain management institute that will work in partnership with the university's Samuel Ginn College of Engineering; launch a doctoral program in finance to help prepare future thought leaders in academia and practice; and enhance instructional technologies and classroom facilities. In recognition of the gift, the school will be renamed the Raymond J. Harbert College of Business.
Harbert, who serves as chairman and CEO of Birmingham investment firm Harbert Management Corporation, has supported a number of programs at the college over the years, including the Raymond J. Harbert Eminent Scholar Chair and the Raymond J. Harbert Fund for Excellence Endowment in the Department of Finance.
"I am interested in helping the university become the best it can be," said Harbert. "One of the critical elements to making that happen is capital. I have been blessed with success in my business endeavors, which in turn allows me to make that capital available as an investment in the College of Business' future. To say it a different way, 'To whom much is given, much is required.'"