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$25-million Bass gift applauds Stanford contributions to mankind

STANFORD - Robert M. and Anne T. Bass announced Thursday, June 13, a $25- million gift to Stanford University celebrating the university's history of intellectual achievement.

Robert Bass, from Fort Worth, Texas, is a Stanford trustee and 1974 graduate of the university's Graduate School of Business.

"The array of advancements initiated by Stanford is truly stunning," he said. "The University has produced three of nine current Supreme Court justices, the academic underpinnings that helped develop America's computer industry, and a range of scientific achievements in medicine, engineering, physics and genetics."

Anne Bass, a Smith College alumna who is active in conservation and in cultural and educational organizations, said the gift is intended to applaud the history of intellectual achievement at a university that only 100 years since its founding is "second to none."

"Stanford's leadership role in advancing human knowledge is well established," she said. "The university has assembled the intellectual talent and depth to advance scientific, academic and social knowledge. The fact it has done so in a relatively short period of time is remarkable."

One example the couple cited was leadership in cancer research, most notably Hodgkin's disease.

"Because of advances by researchers here, that disease went from almost invariably fatal to almost 95 percent curable," Anne Bass said.

She also pointed to genetic medicine, in which Stanford has been a pioneer. Major findings about DNA and its replication by Stanford researchers have opened the door to altering the genes that cause disease.

The gift, Robert Bass said, will be used "to support high-priority projects and innovative research in a number of fields and will help Stanford to pioneer further advances in the sciences, engineering, medicine and the humanities."

Stanford President Donald Kennedy and Board President James Gaither, in turn, applauded the gift.

"The Bass gift and the thoughts behind it underscore the importance of Stanford research to this nation," Kennedy said. "With such magnificent help, we can guarantee its future and extend its strength."

Said Gaither: "This is a remarkable and very exciting vote of confidence in Stanford, recognizing both the accomplishments and promise of our extraordinary faculty. Stanford has always been blessed with two kinds of forward thinkers, those who can see the future in their given disciplines, and those whose support carries us there. Bob and Anne represent an important new generation of the latter kind."

The gift is only the most recent by the Basses to Stanford. They also have supported the university's business school, its academic programs in Washington, D.C., and construction of undergraduate student residences.

The $25 million will be counted in the total for Stanford's Centennial Campaign, which three days earlier surpassed its $1.1 billion goal seven months ahead of schedule. The campaign coincides with Stanford's Centennial; the university was founded in 1891.

Robert Bass, who founded Robert M. Bass Group, a diversified investment concern, chairs the Stanford Board of Trustee's Committee on Land and Buildings. He has taken a leading role in devising a long-range strategic plan for the campus. He also serves on the Advisory Committee of the Stanford Graduate School of Business.<caron>



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