$10 million endows gender institute
The Institute for Research on Women and Gender has been renamed the Michelle R. Clayman Institute for Gender Research in recognition of a $3 million gift from Graduate School of Business alumna Michelle R. Clayman. In addition to her gift, pledges of support from nine other members of the institute's national advisory panel have been matched with funds from the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation to establish a $10 million endowment.
"The institute has produced groundbreaking work over the last 30 years, enhancing the lives of women all over the globe," Clayman said. "I hope that this gift will strengthen the institute and allow it to continue its tradition of excellence in research."
Clayman, who earned a master's degree in business administration at Stanford in 1979, is the founder and managing partner of New Amsterdam Partners, an institutional money management firm in New York City. In addition to serving as chair of the institute's national advisory panel, she is a member of the director's council for the Women's Studies in Religion Program at Harvard Divinity School and is a board director of Children of Bellevue, a nonprofit at the public Bellevue Hospital Center in New York.
"This endowment will ensure the long-term viability of the institute by providing an ongoing and stable base of financial support for the program's core needs," said Sharon R. Long, the Vernon R. and Lysbeth Warren Anderson Dean of Humanities and Sciences. "We are grateful to all our supporters who have contributed to this endowment campaign, and we extend special thanks to Michelle Clayman, chair of the institute's advisory panel, for the naming gift she made during this campaign. With Londa Schiebinger at the helm, I am confident that we will continue seeing great things from the institute."
Since Schiebinger, a professor of the history of science, came to Stanford in 2004 as the institute's director, the institute has focused on gender in the workplace, with an emphasis on issues related to science, technology and engineering. Schiebinger said she hopes that results of the institute's ongoing studies—which include examining why women leave technical jobs in Silicon Valley and the challenges facing dual-career academic couples—will help influence the way employers look at recruitment and retention issues and redefine the debate on work-life balance. The institute also is creating a website, aimed at women in the business community and their employers, to disseminate timely and credible research along relevant themes.
"The speed at which we were able to build our endowment, which engaged a number of alumni and friends, indicates how strongly people feel that research on women and gender is crucial to building a strong society and rich culture," Schiebinger said. "Women have much to contribute in all aspects of life and work, and there is still much to understand about how reforming gender relations in our society can improve the quality of life for everyone."