Home » University of Louisville receives $12.6 million gift from local resident

University of Louisville receives $12.6 million gift from local resident

Half to go to jazz studies program, half to athletics

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (Jan. 21, 2015) — The School of Music at the University of Louisville recently received the largest planned financial gift in its 82-year history.

The jazz studies program will receive $6.3 million from Max Baumgardner, a retired pilot and investor from Louisville. The “Max Baumgardner Endowed Fund for Excellence in Jazz Studies” will support faculty positions, student scholarships and additional programming.

UofLThe substantial bequest is part of a $12.6 million total planned gift from Baumgardner. The remaining $6.3 million will go to UofL athletics in part to support student academic resources.

“This gift will preserve the jazz studies program and ensure that it remains the premiere program of its kind in the state for the foreseeable future,” said Christopher Doane, dean of the School of Music. “Not many university programs have support to this degree and we are exceedingly grateful to Max as our benefactor for recognizing the value of jazz studies and the significance of supporting the arts.”

Baumgardner, who attended UofL for two years before joining U.S. Naval Aviation and deploying to the Korean War, said passion for music is one of the reasons he chose to focus his gift toward the university.

“I’ve always loved music,” he said. “I’m sort of a fanatic.”

Of the $6.3 million for athletics, 10 percent will exclusively benefit academic programs supporting student athletes and the new academic resource center.