The University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center
$50 Million Gift Sets Record for The University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center
Gift from T. Boone Pickens aimed to leave $1 billion legacy
Ingenuity. Innovation. Focus. Drive.
T. Boone Pickens and M. D. Anderson Cancer Center President John Mendelsohn, M.D., share a vision for the future from the 21st floor of the T. Boone Pickens Academic Tower, slated for completion in Spring 2008. Photo by John Everett.
It’s not surprising to hear these words used in conversations regarding Texas giant T. Boone Pickens — certainly they’ve been spoken around boardroom conference tables for years. Now, they’re being used in philanthropic circles just as frequently.
In a move that made M. D. Anderson history on May 16, 2007, Pickens gave the institution its largest gift to date — $50 million. The gift was also the largest for the T. Boone Pickens Foundation, which he created just five months prior.
The size of the gift alone holds great promise for the future of cancer research and patient care programs, but what speaks to its ingenuity and innovation is the manner in which it is constructed. M. D. Anderson must grow the original $50 million into $500 million before the funds are used. That same day, Pickens made a similar gift to The University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, with an identical charge.
Through both gifts, Pickens is focusing his efforts on building a $1 billion legacy for healthcare. Pickens’ gift to M. D. Anderson will be invested in UTIMCO’s Long Term Fund, where earnings on the original principal will accrue. M. D. Anderson may choose to add new outside donations as well. When the goal is met, each institution will be able to apply the funds to high-priority projects.
Oil and gas industry leader and philanthropist T. Boone Pickens speaks at a press conference held to announce his foundation’s gift of $50 million to The University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center. Photo by John Everett.
“These gifts carry tremendous potential to change the face of the future of health care. On behalf of the more than 80,000 patients M. D. Anderson sees each year, along with their friends and family members, I extend our gratitude to Boone Pickens,” says M. D. Anderson President John Mendelsohn, M.D. “Boone’s innovation in business has resulted in extraordinary success and returns, and his goal is to have the same hold true for his philosophy of giving. His forward thinking regarding health care issues has long helped patients at M. D. Anderson and truly around the world.”
Investing in greatness
Pickens formed the T. Boone Pickens Foundation to “increase my focus on investments outside the traditional business world and into the philanthropic marketplace. My objective is to invest in programs, initiatives and people who could have a great impact in America. Of course, that’s why I picked these two institutions. I have witnessed firsthand the great work being done at UT Southwestern and at M. D. Anderson.”