MIAMI – The University of Miami’s business school will be known as the Miami Herbert Business School in honor of alumni couple Patti and Allan Herbert, who have donated more than $100 million to their alma mater since graduating from UM in the 1950s.
“It’s a vote of confidence,” business school dean John Quelch said of the Herberts’ recent gift of $89 million to UM, where they met as undergraduates.
“The business school’s vision already commits us to discover and disseminate transformative business knowledge to advance sustainable prosperity worldwide,” Quelch said. “The Herberts’ gift will secure our opportunity to achieve this vision and our goal of becoming a top 25 business school by 2025.”
Initially, Patti Herbert wanted the gift to UM to be in her husband’s name alone, but Allan insisted that both their names be included, “because that’s the way our lives have always been – a partnership,” he said in a statement released by the university.
“The university is very special to both of us. It is where we got our education, made life-long friendships, gained leadership skills, and met our life partners,” Allan Herbert said.
The couple wed in 1958 and embarked on successful careers. Allan became an insurance executive and Patti went into real estate.
“Patti and Allan Herbert have shown unbounded passion and a deep commitment for their alma mater for the past six decades, supporting a number of colleges, schools, and programs over the years,” UM President Julio Frenk said.
“They have always kept the success of our students first, and this most recent gift will help generations to come,” said the former Mexican health secretary.
In 2008, the couple donated $8 million for The Patti and Allan Herbert Wellness Center on UM’s Coral Gables campus.
Other gifts from the Herberts have been directed to UM departments including the Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center, the Frost School of Music, the School of Nursing and Health Studies, the School of Law, the School of Education and Human Development, the Institute for Advanced Study of the Americas, the Department of Athletics and the Lowe Art Museum.
To encourage other alumni to contribute to the business school, the couple have launched the Herbert Challenge, promising to match gifts up to an established amount.
Quelch noted the importance of the Herberts’ gift as the school launches its STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics)-certified Master of Science in Sustainable Business.
That program, which is the first of its kind, is offered in collaboration with the Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science and the School of Architecture and College of Engineering.
“The business school will use a substantial portion of the Herberts’ gift to attract challenge grants to build out other centers of excellence, among them a Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship; a Center for Principled Leadership and Governance; a Center for Behavioral Decision Making; a Center for Business Analytics and Technology; and a Center for Global Operations and Strategy,” UM said.