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STANFORD -- Helen and Peter Bing of Los Angeles have given Stanford University $5 million to help reconstruct and restore Green Library's West Wing, the original Main Library, which has been closed since the October 1989 earthquake.
Announcement of the major gift came just after the Board of Trustees, earlier in April, approved the Stanford Restoration Fund, an all- out effort to raise $50 million for earthquake recovery. An earlier gift from Melvin and Joan Lane got the library restoration project started.
Besides Green Library, damaged buildings given top priority for restoration include Geology Corner and Language Corner in the Inner Quad and the Stanford Museum of Art. Major repairs also are needed on Building 30 in the Inner Quad and Building 500A, the Terman Engineering Lab Annex behind the quad.
In addition, money raised during the new campaign will be used to head off serious future problems by retrofitting and seismically bracing a long list of other buildings. President Gerhard Casper has said the Restoration Fund is the university's highest development priority.
Donors to the Restoration Fund will help fill the gap between contributions from the Federal Emergency Management Agency and the actual cost of repair and restoration. The Office of Development plans on recognizing key gifts by making a range of naming opportunities available to donors, said Jack Hickethier, acting director of major gifts.
The Bings' gift is the largest to date for the Green Library project. Former trustee Melvin B. Lane, Class of 1944, and his wife, Joan, made a major gift last year to the project, as did another former trustee, who remains anonymous.
The remaining gap of nearly $8 million to reconstruct Green Library is the subject of "intense effort" by Office of Development staff and volunteers, Hickethier said.
Peter Bing, M.D., a Stanford trustee, is a member of the Class of 1955. He and his wife have made numerous major gifts to the university, including establishing the Bing Teaching Initiative. Earlier this year, the Stanford Associates honored him with the Degree of Uncommon Man.
"I'm grateful to be in a position to help," Dr. Bing said. He added that the gift was motivated by his long friendship with and high regard for Cecil Green, and because of the centrality of the libraries to the academic environment.
"Gifts and leadership such as that of Dr. and Mrs. Bing and Mel and Joan Lane are making possible the renewal of the library," said Michael Keller, Ida M. Green Director of Stanford University Libraries. "Such acts of devotion give heart and substance to the work of university officials and library staff, who have been engaged in planning the return to service of this major facility."
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