CU-Boulder marks decade since Leeds endowment

By Staff

Michael Leeds, center, reacts with his wife, Andrea, right, while being escorted by Donna Sockell during a surprise party celebrating 10 years since the donation and naming rights to the Leeds School of Business at the University of Colorado Boulder. (Photo by Casey A. Cass/University of Colorado)

A landmark $35 million endowment gift by the Leeds family to the University of Colorado Boulder in 2001 was celebrated at a surprise 10th anniversary dinner Tuesday, Nov. 29, at the Hotel Boulderado.

At the dinner — attended by CU-Boulder Chancellor Philip DiStefano, Leeds School of Business Dean David Ikenberry and CU Foundation CEO Wayne Hutchens, among other CU leaders — past and present members of the school spoke about the substantial impacts of the endowment.

One such impact came in 2006, when the Center for Education and Social Responsibility was created to fulfill Michael Leeds’ mission of emphasizing ethics and social responsibility at CU. In this program, Leeds teaches a class on business leadership. “That’s unheard of for donors anywhere else,” said 2009 graduate Ben Thacker. “He sets a great example.”

CU-Boulder marks decade since Leeds endowment

CU-Boulder Chancellor Philip DiStefano, left, visits with Michael Leeds during Tuesday's surprise party. (Photo by Casey A. Cass/University of Colorado)

A Boulder Daily Camera story reported these and other details of the event. An in-depth interview with Michael Leeds and CESR director Donna Sockell can be viewed here.

2011 annual report available: The CU Foundation’s Annual Report for the 2011 fiscal year is now available in print and online. Besides fulfilling the foundation’s fiduciary responsibility, this edition highlights the public launch of the Creating Futures campaign.  View an online version and download a PDF here: For a print copy, contact Maxine Plum at