As the financial books closed this summer, it’s time for the Saint Mary’s community to celebrate a number of record-breaking donations in FY ’23 that were acquired through the work of the Office of Advancement.

In FY ’23, the university saw a historic $47.2 million raised – the most money ever committed to the university in a fiscal year – donated through gifts, pledges, in-kind donations, and estate commitments. The previous record for gift commitments was set in 2014, with $19 million committed.

“With a historic philanthropic year for the university, one thing has been made clear: our alumni and benefactors believe in Saint Mary’s and our mission and vision,” said Gary Klein, vice president of advancement. “With these transformational gifts, many generations of students will benefit from a Saint Mary’s education — and, in turn, society will benefit from graduates who are both skilled and demonstrate strong moral and ethical character.”

As a part of this historic year, Saint Mary’s received its largest gift commitment to date of $25 million. While the benefactors wish to remain anonymous, they shared they felt compelled to invest in Saint Mary’s, stating how much they appreciate the hard work of the president and administration to boldly address the future course of Saint Mary’s. They see the university as one of the few that have a clear plan to steer through the turbulent waters facing all in higher education today.

As a stipulation of the gift agreement, in order to inspire others to step forward to provide support, the family challenged the university to raise an additional $100 million beginning June 1, 2022. This also marks the largest philanthropic challenge in university history, surpassing the $5 million challenge for Aquinas Hall on the Winona Campus.

The Saint Mary’s Fund also saw the most money committed in a single year in FY ‘23, with more than $1.8 million committed. In addition, the Office of Advancement secured the final $4.5 million to complete the fundraising for Aquinas Hall.

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