Duke University in Durham, North Carolina, has announced a $13.6 million gift from board member David M. Rubenstein in support of the university's Rare Book, Manuscript, and Special Collections Library.
The gift — the largest ever to Duke University Libraries — will support renovations of the special collections library as part of the final phase of the Perkins Project, a multiyear renovation project that began ten years ago with construction of Bostock Library and the von der Heyden Pavilion, both of which were completed in 2005. Scheduled to begin in 2012, the renovations will increase the research, instruction, storage, and exhibition capabilities of the library while addressing the need for a secure stack area where special collections can be shelved in a controlled environment. The library will also get new doors, windows, and lighting that give the entire complex a more unified and welcoming presence.
Rubenstein — co-founder and managing director of the Carlyle Group, a global alternative asset manager — graduated magna cum laude from Duke in 1970. A longtime supporter of the university, he donated $5.75 million to the Sanford School of Public Policy at Duke in 2009.
"Libraries are at the heart of any great educational institution," said Rubenstein. "This renovation and modernization program will help ensure that the Rare Book and Manuscript Library's priceless collection is preserved and accessible to scholars and the public for decades to come."