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Updated 10:00 AM April 17, 2006




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  The Michigan Difference
Faculty, staff donors honored for giving to U

John Romani, professor emeritus in the School of Public Health, and his wife, Barbara Anderson, professor in the Department of Sociology, have a simple reason for contributing to The Michigan Difference campaign: "Charity truly does begin at home, and U-M is our home," Romani and Anderson state in a poster supporting The Heart of the Michigan Difference campaign—an initiative to celebrate faculty and staff giving and to encourage future generosity.
Associate Dean of Students Stephanie Pinder-Amaker thanks faculty and staff donors to the University and The Michigan Difference campaign at an April 10 reception at the Clements Library. Pinder-Amaker is co-spokesperson of The Heart of the Michigan Difference initiative, which celebrates faculty and staff donations and encourages future giving. (Photo by Gregory Fox)

Romani and Anderson are among 650 faculty and staff members who have given more than $10,000 to the University over time, and have made gifts during The Michigan Difference—the University's current $2.5 billion fund-raising campaign. These donors were honored during a reception April 10 at the Clements Library.

Since the kick-off of The Michigan Difference, more than $42 million has been received from faculty and staff.

"The response received shows us not only pride but that everyone here standing in this library has said: 'I want excellence to continue on this campus,'" President Mary Sue Coleman said during the reception honoring the givers. "We know the power that this University has and the difference it makes. We also know that philanthropy makes this possible."

Vice President for Development Jerry May noted that Coleman and her husband Kenneth were among the first people to step up during the campaign and set a giving trend with a $500,000 leadership gift in November 2003. "Philanthropy has a huge impact on the external constituencies of the University," May said.

Former provost and The Heart of the Michigan Difference co-spokesperson Paul N. Courant spoke on behalf of the faculty and staff: "We value the importance of what we accomplish. We are in front of it every day," he said. "When we have contributions from you, it is because there is an appreciation for what the University does."

Associate Dean of Students and fellow co-spokesperson Stephanie Pinder-Amaker shared her motivation to contribute: "The work being done at this University has inspired me to give," said Pinder-Amaker, who added it is a blessing to see that the University does work that embraces students' mental health.

The University will host another reception in the fall for all faculty and staff who have contributed to The Michigan Difference campaign. In addition, individuals soon will receive a lapel pin in the mail to acknowledge their contribution.

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