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Who Wants to Be a Billionaire?

The College’s list of honorary degree recipients has three big-money donors on it:

1.Mindy Kaling ‘01, actor, writer, producer, author, and comedy star;
2. Peter M. Fahey ‘68, Dartmouth trustee, president of the Class of 1968, and a retired partner of Goldman Sachs;
3. Frank J. Guarini ‘46, former U.S. congressman and representative to the United Nations;
4. William H. Holmes ‘79, surgeon and global public health leader involved with more than 20 humanitarian aid organizations;
5. Sylvia Kaaya, psychiatrist, researcher and dean of the School of Medicine at Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania;
6. David M. Rubenstein, co-founder and co-executive chairman of the Carlyle Group and supporter of The Giving Pledge.

Meanwhile at Brown, there isn’t even one billionaire receiving an honorary degree:

1. Lonnie G. Bunch III, Educator, historian and museum director
2. J. Michael Kosterlitz, Physicist, educator and Nobel Prize winner
3. Beverly E. Ledbetter, Chief legal officer and community leader
4. Nancy Northup, Attorney and global reproductive rights leader
5. Giuseppe Penone, Visual artist
6. Sting, Singer-songwriter, author and activist
7. Trudie Styler, Actress, activist and UNICEF U.K. ambassador

Now here’s something that I don’t get. I wrote on January 15:

Brown President Christina Paxson took office on July 1, 2012, and three years and three months later, on October 23, 2015, following a two-year “quiet phase,” she launched the $3.0 billion BrownTogether capital campaign. Last week, with $1.64 billion raised in a little more than a total of four years, the campaign passed its halfway mark. Brava, Christina.

Meanwhile in Hanover, over four and a half years into Phil Hanlon’s Presidency…

Maybe Phil is giving too many honorary degrees to rich guys? Would he do better at fundraising if he gave more recognition to artists, scientists, educators and people fighting for causes.

Addendum: Give Brown credit for ambition. Compare President Paxson’s capital campaign of $3.0 billion to her $3.5 endowment. Dartmouth’s endowment is a hair below $5.0 billion, and Phil’s campaign is the same $3.0 billion.


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