The President's Circle Reception on August 28 got a surprise boost when the Goldberg, Ponsky and Frankel Family announced its $1 million commitment to the Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine.
"This entire family has been touched by Case Western Reserve," said Jeffrey Ponsky (MED '71, MGT '90), who was joined at the event by his wife, Jackie and their family.
The family's affiliation with the university includes three alumni of the School of Medicine. Two—Jeffrey and his son, Lee (MED '97),—are currently faculty members. Jeffrey Ponsky is the Oliver H. Payne Professor and Chair of the Department of Surgery, while Lee is an assistant professor and director of the Center for Urologic Oncology and Minimally Invasive Therapies at Case Medical Center, a partnership between Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine and University Hospitals. The third alumnus, Jeffrey's son, Todd (MED '99), will come on board later this year.
The family's gift will support projects in surgical education.
The reception celebrated the contributions of Case Western Reserve alumni and friends. Held on the eve of President Barbara R. Snyder's investiture, the event recognized members of the President's Circle, whose lifetime giving to the university totals $1 million or more.
The Goldberg, Ponsky and Frankel Family is the newest member of this prestigious group of philanthropists, whose honor roll reads like a who's who of the region's most generous families.
The news of the family's gift followed the president's remarks on the importance that transformational gifts have played in the life of the university—past, present and future."Transformational giving allows the university to turn aspirations into reality, " Snyder said. "All of us understand that great universities are built over time, through vision, collaboration and sacrifice,” Snyder continued, as she addressed the crowd of nearly 200 during the reception on Freiberger Field. "We are surrounded by individuals who have made extraordinary gestures of faith in this institution."
Encircled by illuminated images of the university's honored traditions, academic excellence and groundbreaking research, Snyder noted the influence that transformational gifts have had at key moments in the university's evolution. Among the highlighted donors were the university's trustees, whose vision and generosity continue to propel the institution forward.
Recent examples of gifts that have honored the university's past while establishing new directions for the future include the dedication of the Inamori International Center for Ethics and Excellence, the groundbreaking for the Mandel Center for Nonprofit Organizations and the creation of the May L. Wykle Professorship at the Frances Payne Bolton School of Nursing. The professorship will be the first endowed chair in the university's history named for an African American.