The gift will elevate the Luther L. and Ardis Fry Professorship in Ophthalmology, which the couple had previously endowed in 2001 with a $1 million gift, to a fully endowed chair. The initial goal of the professorship was to help attract top-rate faculty to the Department of Ophthalmology, and the department met that goal when it hired John Sutphin. Sutphin, who now chairs the department chair, will take on the endowed chair position.
"The training I got at KU and the Department of Ophthalmology allowed me to do very well in my own practice, and we want to give a little of that back," said Luther Fry.
Fry grew up in Montezuma, Kansas, and received his bachelor's degree from KU in 1963 and a medical degree from the KU School of Medicine in 1967. He is internationally recognized for his development of small-incision surgery in cataract treatment. Ardis Fry, who grew up on a farm between Lindsborg and McPherson, graduated with a degree in nursing from Bethany College in Lindsborg in 1965.
"The Frys have generously supported our Department of Ophthalmology for fifteen years and helped us recruit and retain first-class personnel," said Robert Simari, executive dean of the KU School of Medicine. "Thanks to their continuing generosity, we now have the same opportunities with the ophthalmology chair."