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UWM Foundation Offices on North Avenue located on the 1st floor of the southwest wing of Cambridge Commons

Welcome to the UWM Foundation homepage. This year we are celebrating our 50th anniversary, supporting the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee since 1974. The UWM Foundation endeavors to advance the mission of the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee (UWM) through requests of philanthropic support for students, faculty, campus programming and the community. Over the course of our first 50 years, we have distributed approximately $375 million in support of UWM students, faculty and community projects. In today’s dollars, that equates to over a half billion dollars.

As good stewards of funds designated for the University, we manage a portfolio currently valued at approximately $226 million, and distribute these funds to the University pursuant to donor wishes. During the last fiscal year alone, we distributed over $24 million touching virtually every aspect of campus life. Our goal is to be completely transparent with our donors and the public. I’m confident that the wealth of information posted on this site will provide readers with a full understanding of our operations and aspirations for the future.

Our last comprehensive campaign, Made in Milwaukee, Shaping the World: The Campaign for UWM, was the most successful in the University’s history. The goal was to raise $200 million in support of student success, research excellence and community engagement. Under the leadership of Chancellor Mark Mone, the final tally exceeded $250 million. What a remarkable statement of the importance of this university to the community! Last year, we accepted the largest gift in the history of the University. We are the stewards of a $20 million gift from the Zilber Family Foundation in support of UWM’s Joseph J. Zilber College of Public Health. This endowed gift will propel the work of the College for generations to come.

While philanthropy and asset management remain the core of our mission, the UWM Foundation constantly and increasingly pursues new, innovative avenues to support the University. We recently welcomed the newly reincorporated UWM Alumni Association as an affiliate of the UWM Foundation. By integrating the business functions of the Alumni Association into the Foundation’s accounting systems, we will achieve greater efficiencies and economies of scale for that wonderful organization. Our unified process for electing Board Members to each organization, will also lead to greater collaboration to the benefit of the University.

In 2005, we created an affiliated organization, the UWM Real Estate Foundation (UWMREF), to develop and manage real property for the benefit of the campus and its students. The UWMREF constructed two residence halls for UWM, RiverView and Cambridge Commons. We are proud that we have not only helped to meet the need for additional student housing and more classroom space but have done so without the infusion of tax dollars and by enhancing the local community. The UWMREF has spearheaded a number of other important projects including the development of the UWM Innovation Accelerator Building and purchase of the Chancellor’s Official Residence.

In addition, the UWM Foundation promotes the University’s mission through the support it provides to campus research and research commercialization. In 2006, we created a second affiliated organization, the UWM Research Foundation to foster research and innovation at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, helping it to become an economic engine for Milwaukee and one of the world’s leading institutions of research as an R1 listed university. The UWM Research Foundation has created an infrastructure for managing UWM’s intellectual property. They have awarded nearly $5.7 million to seed promising projects which resulted in more than $36.6 million in follow-on funding, provided support for graduate students and post-doctoral researchers and helped foster a culture of innovation at UWM. These investments are paying off with a growing portfolio that includes 187 issued and 102 pending patents, the completion of 50 active license and option agreements, and 22 startup license/options.

UWM is an amazing university that does so much to support the greater Milwaukee Community and the State of Wisconsin. I have been engaged with UWM for over twenty-five years and still learn something new about my alma mater almost every day. The UWM Foundation is a dynamic and increasingly important organization devoted to the success of the University. I am honored to chair the Board of Directors and invite you to join us in support of this wonderful institution.

David Gilbert, President