As a special Homecoming weekend gift, two UW-Madison alumni donated $25 million to the school’s fundraising campaign, the university announced Saturday.
Ted and Mary Kellner, of Milwaukee, committed the money to go toward the All Ways Forward comprehensive campaign, of which they serve as co-chairs. The $3.2 billion campaign was launched in 2015 to span seven years and fund various departments and initiatives across the school.
“It’s an incredibly generous gift that will have impact for years to come,” UW Alumni spokesman Vince Sweeney said.
The Kellners earned their bachelor’s degrees from UW-Madison in 1969 and 1968, respectively. Ted Kellner is the co-founder and former chairman and CEO of Fiduciary Management Inc. of Milwaukee, which has grown to be one of the largest asset-management businesses in the region. He is also the co-founder and executive chairman of Fiduciary Real Estate Development. Mary Kellner is a former teacher, guidance counselor and coordinator of school-based programs to prevent drug and alcohol abuse.
“When I talk to people about Wisconsin with the professors I had and the fun I had ... this was an easy gift to make and I hope it won’t be the last,” Ted Kellner said.
This is not the Kellners’ first donation to the school. They have supported several programs, including athletic scholarships and facilities — Camp Randall’s Kellner Hall is named after the couple — programming initiatives in education and business, and general scholarships.
Sweeney said the details of the contribution have not been finalized and there are decisions to be made about where the funds will be allocated, but Ted Kellner said parts of it will go toward athletics, business and the School of Education.
“This gift continues the tradition of providing support to key programs that help us serve students better,” Chancellor Rebecca Blank said in a statement. “It’s delightful to be able to announce this latest gift on Homecoming weekend.”