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George Vlahakis
IU Media Relations

Last modified: Friday, October 21, 2005

IU, Kelley School thank alumnus for his example and generosity

Godfrey Graduate and Executive Education Center named

Oct. 21, 2005

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- Indiana University and its Kelley School of Business today (Oct. 21) thanked a Hoosier alumnus who never forgot his "humble roots" in a small Indiana town and continues to believe that it is important to create new opportunities for those who follow him.

In a ceremony this morning, the Kelley School renamed its Graduate and Executive Education Center in honor of William J. Godfrey, an alumnus and successful businessman who has bequeathed land valued at $25 million. About 200 students, faculty and invited guests attended today's events.

Godfrey, a native of Fish Lake, Ind., is president of Trinity Associates Real Estate in Hilton Head, S.C. His gift will be used for need-based scholarships in the Kelley School and for the building's needs. It is the largest single gift from an individual to the Kelley School.

In his remarks, IU President Adam W. Herbert recounted Godfrey's early years growing up in the small LaPorte County community and about how hard he had worked in high school and later at IU to support his family after the death of his father.

In 1960, Godfrey entered IU as a "resident scholar" and earned a bachelor's degree in business four years later. While at IU, he entered into several successful business ventures that enabled him to put his brother through IU and pay off the mortgage on his mother's home. After earning a master of business administration degree in 1968, Godfrey went on to great success in the pharmaceutical industry and in real estate.

Herbert said Godfrey's gift, which will establish a scholarship endowment fund for more than 100 students each year, will offer students "the opportunity that was (Godfrey's) the springboard for his success. These will be students of exceptional promise and ability who, like Bill, could not otherwise afford a college education.

"Bill decided to pass on to others the advantages that were afforded to him," Herbert added. "Generations of students who become Godfrey Scholars or study in the Godfrey Graduate and Executive Education Center will benefit from his determination to extend the circle of giving into wider and wider spheres."

Kelley School Dean Dan Smith said Godfrey embodies all that the school stands for -- helping students to develop their dreams and providing them with the tools and skills needed to make those dreams come true. He said Godfrey's life will inspire and draw students to IU and the Kelley School for decades to come.

"Today, we celebrate an extraordinary example of all that the Kelley School stands for. As you may know, Mr. Godfrey is from humble roots, just like many of our students today. Yet, he has clearly accomplished great things," Smith said. "Mr. Godfrey embodies our belief that business is first and foremost about finding ways to address important problems faced by others. And if you do that, the money and career success will take care of itself."

Speaking directly to Godfrey, Smith concluded, "Please know that your gift to us is so much more than a monetary gift. Your gift to us is being the person that you are. It's the life you lead. It's all that you have done and all you have yet to do. Your story and your generosity will draw the best students to IU and to the Kelley School forever. Yours is quite literally the gift of a lifetime."

The Godfrey center has 180,000 square feet of classroom and office space for use by graduate students, corporate recruiters, executive visitors and administrators. It houses administrative offices for the Master of Business Administration program, Kelley Executive Partners, the Johnson Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation, and graduate academic programs.

The building features classrooms and other facilities that maximize student-faculty interaction in a collaborative setting. The most wired building on the Bloomington campus, it features both direct and wireless connectivity that will help students both inside and outside the classroom. Other special features include a "trading room," which includes informational resources comparable to most Wall Street firms.

The Kelley School of Business educational programs have been among the finest available for more than 80 years. Its MBA degree program has been a fixture in Business Week magazine's listing of the top 20 programs and currently ranks 18th. Its students are among the favorites of corporate recruiters who are looking for promising managers, marketing talent and finance graduates.