Duke’s athletic department had never received a $10 million gift before this year. But since October there have been two – Rubenstein’s and another from Dr. Steven Scott and his wife, Rebecca Scott, of Boca Raton, Fla., whose gift will support a new building for ticket offices, a team store and training rooms.
The sizable donations will count toward Duke’s multi-year, $3.25 billion fundraising campaign for the entire university. Of that total goal, $250 million is the target for Duke athletics. The money would be used for facilities, operations and invested funds.
Duke President Richard Brodhead, in announcing the gift, said, “The breadth of David Rubenstein’s interests at Duke is matched only by the depth of his generosity. We are grateful for the many extraordinary ways he has supported Duke’s highest priorities and enriched the student experience.”
Rubenstein is one of 92 billionaires to take the Giving Pledge, stating that he’ll give half his wealth to philanthropy. The push was started by Warren Buffett and Bill and Melinda Gates. Melinda Gates is also a Duke alumnus.
Rubenstein serves on the boards of the Smithsonian Institution, Johns Hopkins University, the University of Chicago, the Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, the Kennedy Center and the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center.
Because of his generosity, the public can view a rare copy of the Magna Carta, which he purchased in 2007 and loaned to the National Archives in Washington. This year, he gave $13.5 million to the archives for a new gallery and visitors center.