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Stanford dedicates new Haas Center for Public Service

STANFORD -- Stanford University's institutional commitment to public service was cemented firmly Friday, April 23, with dedication of the new $3.35 million Haas Center for Public Service.

Designed by the architectural firm of William Turnbull and Associates, the new Haas Center is a 14,000-square-foot, three-story wooden building with a large front porch and brick courtyard, located next to the Institute for Research on Women and Gender.

The building houses more than 40 student volunteer groups and university-administered service programs, ranging from Stanford in Government and Upward Bound to the American Indian Science and Engineering Society and Volunteers in Asia.

Much of its open-plan office space is reserved for students who run their own public service programs. Other features include conference rooms for meetings and seminars, and a comfortable student lounge. Halls are decorated with tributes to alumni, children's artwork, and memorabilia from the Haas Center's first decade - when it was housed, too snugly, in nearby Owen House.

Several hundred people gathered for the late-afternoon dedication festivities, which included tours of the new building, refreshments, student performances, speeches, and a formal transfer of the Haas Center sign to its new location above the front porch.

Speakers paid special tribute to Stanford President Emeritus Donald Kennedy and outgoing Haas Center Director Catherine Milton, who spearheaded the university's promotion of public service nearly a decade ago. (The building's main conference room is named after Kennedy).

Others attending the ceremony included Mimi and Peter Haas, whose family endowed the center with $6.2 million in 1989 and provided another $1.5 million for the building's construction, Palo Alto Mayor Jean McCown, California State Sen. Rebecca Morgan (R-Menlo Park), Rep. Anna Eshoo (D-Calif.), and Stanford alumna Gayle Wilson, wife of California Gov. Pete Wilson.

Speakers included Haas Center Acting Director Timothy Stanton; Stanford President Gerhard Casper; Board of Trustees Chairman John Freidenrich; Haas Advisory Board Chairman Tom Ford, who led the building campaign; donor Miriam Haas; and John Gardner, the Miriam and Peter Haas Centennial Professor of Public Service. Current students, recent graduates and community members also spoke.

The Haas Center for Public Service was established in 1984 to serve as the focal point for local, national and international voluntary student efforts on campus. Today, more than 70 percent of students are involved in some type of public service during their Stanford years.



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