$35 Donor’s Name Revealed

The name of the University alumnus who donated $35 million toward a new Gopher-only football stadium was revealed Friday morning in a press conference at Gibson-Nagurski Football Practice Facility.

St. Paul native T. Denny Sanford’s gift was the largest donation in the 152-year history of the University.

University President Bob Bruininks introduced him in a prepared statement. Gophers football coach Glen Mason and Athletics Director Joel Maturi also spoke at the press conference.

“This gift has the potential to transform the student experience and the campus for generations to come,” Bruininks said.

Bruininks said the gift is intended as a starting point, and that there is still more work to do.

“It’s the amount that we all believe is the sparkplug, the catalyst to go forward with this project,” Bruininks said.

Sanford confirmed that there is at least one additional $1 million donor, and University officials say that several people have approached them with offers to donate.

The gift is intended to cover the expenses of constructing the basic stadium and field, Sanford said.

He said he hopes to have the stadium built in time for the first football game of the 2007 season.

Sanford, a Sioux Falls, S.D., resident and chairman of United National Bank Holding Company, grew up a block away from Macalester College in St. Paul and graduated from St. Paul’s Central High School in 1954. He graduated from the University with a bachelor’s degree in psychology in 1958.

Bruininks also announced Dave Mona as campaign director for the football stadium drive.