Detail

USD PRESIDENT JAMES T. HARRIS III ANNOUNCES $20 MILLION GIFT FROM USD BOARD CHAIRMAN DONALD R. KNAUSS and WIFE ELLIE KNAUSS

SAN DIEGO, CA – November 30, 2017- University of San Diego President James T. Harris III today announced a leadership gift to the university from USD Board Chair Donald (Don) R. Knauss and his wife Ellie Knauss to launch the final planning and construction of a new USD School of Business Complex. 

At today’s ceremony announcing the Knausses’ leadership gift, President Harris noted that the gift is the largest donation ever received by USD’s School of Business. The new School of Business facility will be located adjacent to Olin Hall, the current home of the School of Business, which will be renovated following construction of the new building to create a consolidated business school complex. The new building will be named for Don and Ellie Knauss.

“Today, we express our most sincere gratitude to Don and Ellie Knauss for their pledge of $20 million to launch the final planning and construction of a new USD School of Business complex,” said President Harris.   “The Knausses’ generosity will enable USD to move forward with a major project that will transform the School of Business footprint and bring into one location all of the school’s academic programs, centers and institutes.”  

“Transformational change in our campus facilities is only possible through the generosity of committed benefactors who want to ensure USD continues delivering on its vision to set the standard for an engaged, contemporary Catholic university where innovative Changemakers confront humanity’s urgent challenges,” said Vice President for University Relations Timothy O’Malley. “Don Knauss has shown great leadership as board chair, and now by making this tremendous gift to USD’s School of Business, he and Ellie have paved the way for us to push forward a project that will contribute significantly to student success.”

The Knausses’ gift will be leveraged to raise additional funds and financial resources for the complex, which will expand the School of Business footprint at USD from the existing 48,000 square feet to more than 120,000 square feet. The project is expected to cost approximately $67 million and be completed in 2022.

Mr. Knauss joined the USD Board of Trustees in 2008 while serving as Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of The Clorox Corporation.  He retired from The Clorox Company in 2015 after serving as Executive Chairman of the Board from November 2014 until July 2015. As CEO, Knauss had overall responsibility for directing the company’s worldwide business which generated revenues of $5.6 billion in fiscal year 2014. Prior to joining The Clorox Company, Knauss spent 12 years with The Coca Cola Company where he served first as Executive Vice President and then as President and Chief Operating Officer for Coca-Cola North America from February 2004 until September 2006. Prior to his employment with The Coca-Cola Company, he held various positions in marketing and sales with PepsiCo, Inc. and Proctor & Gamble, and served as an officer in the United States Marine Corps.

A native of Highland, IN, Mr. Knauss serves on the boards of several public and private organizations, including McKesson Corporation, Target Corporation, U.S. Marine Corps University Foundation, Morehouse College, the Grocery Manufacturers of America, the National Collegiate Athletic Association, Kellogg Company, and URS Corporation, and the Indiana University dean’s advisory board, College of Arts and Sciences.  He also serves on the Economic Advisory Council at the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco. The Knausses are proud parents of four children, including one who is a 2011 USD graduate.

About the University of San Diego
The University of San Diego sets the standard for an engaged, contemporary Catholic university where innovative Changemakers confront humanity’s urgent challenges. With more than 8,000 students from 77 countries and 44 states, USD is the youngest, independent institution on the U.S. News & World Report list of top 100 universities in the United States. USD’s eight academic divisions include the College of Arts and Sciences, the School of Business, the Shiley-Marcos School of Engineering, the School of Law, the School of Leadership and Education Sciences, the Hahn School of Nursing and Health Science, the Joan B. Kroc School of Peace Studies, and the Division of Professional and Continuing Education. In February 2016, USD launched the public phase of Leading Change: The Campaign for USD, which represents the most ambitious fundraising effort in the history of the university and builds upon the strong philanthropic momentum achieved by USD in recent years. Envisioning 2024, USD's strategic plan, capitalizes on the university’s recent progress and aligns new strategic goals with current strengths to help shape a vision for the future as the university looks ahead to its 75th anniversary in the year 2024.


About the University of San Diego

The University of San Diego sets the standard for an engaged, contemporary Catholic university where innovative Changemakers confront humanity’s urgent challenges. With more than 8,000 students from 75 countries and 44 states, USD is the youngest independent institution on the U.S. News & World Report list of top 100 universities in the United States. USD’s eight academic divisions include the College of Arts and Sciences, the School of Business, the Shiley-Marcos School of Engineering, the School of Law, the School of Leadership and Education Sciences, the Hahn School of Nursing and Health Science, the Joan B. Kroc School of Peace Studies, and the Division of Professional and Continuing Education. In February 2016, USD launched the public phase of Leading Change: The Campaign for USD, which represents the most ambitious fundraising effort in the history of the university and builds upon the strong philanthropic momentum achieved by USD in recent years. In September 2016, USD introduced Envisioning 2024, a strategic plan that capitalizes on the university’s recent progress and aligns new strategic goals with current strengths to help shape a vision for the future as the university looks ahead to its 75th anniversary in the year 2024.

Contact:

Pamela Gray Payton
pgray@sandiego.edu
(619) 260-4681