Edina couple donates $5 million to fund U education programs

by Nathan Hall

An Edina, Minn., couple has donated $5 million to the University to help fund education efforts.

Jim and Carmen Campbell, who both graduated from the University in 1964, said in a prepared statement that $1 million will be allotted for a faculty chair devoted predominantly to studying and solving issues faced by teachers working with at-risk children. The College of Education and Human Development said it will fill the post by late 2004.

Another $1 million is set aside for a program Carlson School of Management Dean Lawrence Benveniste described in a prepared statement as “giving students hands-on experience in managing stock portfolios and other investments and working with entrepreneurs to start new businesses.”

The remaining $3 million will be split between the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum and the University’s marching band.

Deborah Dillon, a University literacy education professor and the Department of Curriculum and Instruction chairwoman, said the decision for the balance to be struck between paying the new chair’s salary and compensation for things such as seminars, graduate fellowships and teaching materials for “high-need schools” had not yet been determined.

Jim Campbell, who graduated from the University with a business degree, retired as CEO of Wells Fargo Bank Minnesota in June 2002. His wife, Carmen Campbell, was a Minneapolis schoolteacher.

Jim Campbell serves on the Carlson School Board of Overseers and is on the board of trustees at the University of Minnesota Foundation, where he also sits as senior vice president for the foundation’s executive committee.