The University of Vermont has announced a $15 million gift from Richard and Deborah Tarrant in support of a planned multi-purpose center.
The largest capital gift in the university's history will support a $95 million project that includes construction of a new event center that will be home to the UVMs men's and women's basketball programs and also host a variety of academic, social, cultural, and entertainment programming; a major renovation of Gutterson Fieldhouse; and upgrades to campus health, wellness, fitness, and recreation spaces. Scheduled to be completed in various stages during the 2020-21 academic year, the new facility will be named the Tarrant Event Center in recognition of the gift.
The Tarrants — now the second biggest donors in UVM history — previously made gifts to the school to establish the Tarrant Institute for Innovative Education and in support of the UVM Cancer Center, the Larner College of Medicine, and the Dudley H. Davis Student Center. They also made a gift to name a floor in the UVM Medical Center's new Robert E. and Holly D. Miller Building in honor of UVM supporters Allen and Bonnie Martin. Rich Tarrant was a first team All-American basketball player at Saint Michael's College and in 1965 was drafted by the Boston Celtics, before becoming co-founder of healthcare technology company IDX Systems Corporation and founder and chair of Marathon Health. He served on UVM's board from 1994 to 2000 and is the father of three sons who were all varsity athletes at the school. Deb Tarrant, a former mayor of Hillsboro Beach, Florida, co-founded the Richard E. and Deborah L. Tarrant Foundation with her husband.
"While this is technically a gift to the university, universities are an integral part of the community," said Rich Tarrant. "They provide entertainment, jobs, health care, and are a place for people to come together. A university of this caliber, especially in a small community, is an incredible resource. Deb and I believe in investing in projects that have an impact far beyond campus, including projects like this one."