The gift, one of the largest ever to any school of communications and the largest in the university's history, will support multiple academic initiatives under the leadership of the school's next dean and will advance the respective visions of the school's two most recent leaders, David Rubin, who retired in 2008 after eighteen years as dean, and Lorraine Branham, who died of cancer last year after nearly eleven years as dean. A national search for the school's next dean is under way, and the school hopes to have a new leader in place by July 1, the start of its new fiscal year.
The Newhouse School is named for the late Samuel I. Newhouse, who founded Advance Publications in 1922 and whose initial gift of $15 million in 1962 — the largest gift in Syracuse University history at the time — supported construction of the first of the school's three buildings. The foundation also has been instrumental in the construction of the school's other two buildings, which were dedicated in 1974 and 2007, and in supporting the school's longstanding commitment to diversity in journalism through the Newhouse Minority Fellowship Program.
"The Newhouse School resulted from my father's dream to establish the finest journalism school in the world," said Advance Publications owner and president Donald Newhouse, who graduated from the university in 1951. "That vision has come true, thanks to the unwavering support of chancellor Kent Syverud, the extraordinary leadership of deans David Rubin and Lorraine Branham, and the exceptional faculty and the diverse and successful student body they have attracted to the school."
"The proud legacy of the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications is more important now than it has ever been," said Syverud. "The generosity of the Newhouse family enables Syracuse University to educate journalists whose dedication to the First Amendment enriches our society. Their support ensures that Syracuse University graduates are both thoughtful communicators who understand the complexity of global audiences and bold innovators who are shaping the future of the field. The Newhouse family's vision and tremendous philanthropy empowers Syracuse University’s faculty to address rapidly evolving media platforms and communication fields. Their innovation prepares our students to enter a competitive job market with experiences and skills that make an impact."