Aug. 23, 2004

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Contact: Bill Hall, president, Hall Family Foundation, (816) 274-4547; or Lynn Bretz, University Relations, (785) 864-8866

Hall Family Foundation names KU chancellor to board of directors

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- University of Kansas Chancellor Robert E. Hemenway has been elected to the Hall Family Foundation board of directors, announced Donald J. Hall, Hall Family Foundation chairman.

"I am pleased that the Hall Family Foundation is adding to our board someone with the vision and experience of Bob Hemenway," Hall commented. "Bob's perspective as a leader within the public and not-for-profit sectors will be a valuable addition to our board. He is widely respected by civic, not-for-profit and academic leaders as well as elected officials within Kansas City and the region. And, he understands the critical role that a progressive partnership of public and private institutions plays in advancing society."

Hemenway is the chief executive officer and 16th chancellor for the University of Kansas. Under his leadership KU has developed a national reputation for excellence and a major presence throughout the state and in metropolitan Kansas City. The university supports 325 degree programs and spans the main campus in Lawrence, the Edwards Campus in Overland Park, the Medical Center campus in Kansas City, Kan., and a School of Medicine clinical branch in Wichita. KU enrolls more than 29,000 students -- a third of them from Greater Kansas City. Hemenway becomes the third KU chancellor to be appointed to the Hall Family Foundation board. Two previous chancellors -- W. Clarke Wescoe and Franklin Murphy -- previously sat on the foundation's board of directors.

"I am pleased to have this opportunity to serve the Hall Family Foundation, a leader in philanthropy in the greater Kansas City area. I have seen the human benefits from the foundation's support of such institutions as Children's Mercy Hospital and the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art. At the University of Kansas, I have personally witnessed the profound effects the foundation has had on a variety of intellectual enterprises, from the humanities to molecular biology."

In 2001, the Hall Family Foundation pledged $42 million to further life sciences research at the KU Medical Center and scholarship in the humanities at the Lawrence campus Hall Center for the Humanities. The $42 million pledge remains the largest private gift to a college or university in Kansas history.

Hemenway's life has been marked by accomplishment as an administrator, teacher and scholar. Since coming to KU in 1995, Hemenway has streamlined KU administration, made the university more student-centered and overseen a growing national reputation. KU's research enterprise has more than doubled its total grants and training expenditures since 1995, reaching $258 million in the most recent year. U.S. News magazine's most recent "America's Best Colleges" rates KU's academic reputation as 29th among public universities, and its "Best Graduate Schools" publication ranks 25 of KU's graduate programs 25th or higher among similar programs at public universities.

Hemenway remains a committed scholar and teacher. He is known for his biography of African-American novelist Zora Neale Hurston, a "Best Books" pick by the New York Times in 1991.


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