Philanthropic Gifts Top
in Record-Breaking Year
CSUDH received a total of $8.3 million in philanthropic gifts and pledges during the 2020-2021 fiscal year. The record-breaking amount continues the upward trend of CSUDH giving, almost doubling the total of $4.5 million raised in 2019-2020.
Vice President of University Advancement Scott Barrett shared his excitement for the success of the university’s fundraising efforts. “We set a very aspirational goal for the university, and we were very fortunate to meet that goal,” he said. “It’s clear that our campus is doing inspiring work, and our donors are answering the call to support the needs and opportunities across our campus.”
One important effort involved the Toro Fund, the university’s unrestricted annual fund. Due to urgent pandemic-driven needs among the CSUDH student population, money from the Toro Fund was used to support emergency and basic student needs. When asked to support this effort, the response from Toro alumni was impressive: the university received 937 gifts totaling $132,469.
The donations were used to provide more than 1,400 students with meals, fresh produce, and pandemic preparedness kits. In addition, the funds provided shelter for 31 students facing housing insecurity and allowed more than 200 students the opportunity to participate in wellness events.
Generous corporate and foundation support was also essential to the university’s philanthropic success.
Among 2021’s notable corporate donations were:
- Hollywood Foreign Press Association – $152,000 for journalism and media programs; emergency and COVID-19 related student needs
- Sony Corporation – $150,000 to the CSUDH Male Success Alliance (MSA)
- Kaiser Permanente – $100,000 to MSA
- Del E. Webb Foundation – $79,000 to the College of Natural and Behavioral Sciences for the purchase of a virtual cadaver table
While the university received federal assistance under the CARES Act to distribute to students, Toro international and undocumented students were not eligible for aid through the COVID-19 relief program. Toro donors stepped up in a big way again, providing $141,000 in direct financial support for these students.
“When CARES funding came through, it helped support our documented, domestic students, but left out all of our international and undocumented students,” says Barrett. “The fact that we had the money in the Toro Fund to be able to support those students was critically important.”
Among the most noteworthy alumni donors is Doug Le Bon, co-founder and senior managing director of Pathway Capital Management LLC in Irvine, Calif. Le Bon, who attained both his bachelor’s degree in business administration (1976) and MBA (1979) from CSUDH, contributed a remarkable $500,000 for student scholarships and an additional $200,000 for technology in the new Innovation & Instruction building – in total, the largest donation to the university by a living alum in CSUDH history.
Long-time Toro supporter Maureen McCarthey, an alumna who earned her MA in special education from CSUDH in 1996, contributed $70,000 to the Maureen P. McCarthey Foundation Scholarship, which she originally established in 2001. Her contributions have increased over the years, and this is now one of the university’s premier scholarship endowments.
The CSUDH Philanthropic Foundation has set a multi-year goal to secure $10 million in scholarships and student success support by June 2026. They are well on their way to attaining that goal: in the first year of their initiative alone, more than $5 million was committed to these student needs.
“I think this is the beginning of an upward trajectory,” Barrett added. “We expect that philanthropic investment will continue to grow on a sustainable basis over the next few years. When we look at the nature and the history of CSUDH, our alumni, and the support we receive from the wider community, in terms of friends and corporate and foundation gifts, I think we can be very confident that’s where we’re headed.”