Rainey to lead $3 billion campaign
Photo by Dan Addison
By Dan Heuchert
Richmond lawyer Gordon F. Rainey Jr. will lead the University’s $3 billion fund-raising campaign, U.Va. President John T. Casteen III announced on Sept. 12.
Rainey, 65, who received a Bachelor of Arts degree from the College of Arts & Sciences in 1962 and his law degree from the School of Law in 1967, has a long record of service to his alma mater. In June, he completed a two-year term as University rector. (He will remain a member of the Board of Visitors until his second term expires in 2008.) Rainey is a former president of the U.Va. Alumni Association and currently serves as a trustee of the Law School Foundation.
“Gordon Rainey has been an effective advocate for the University for many years, while serving as rector and board member,” Casteen said.
“With his deep knowledge of the University and his grasp of its aspirations, Mr. Rainey is uniquely qualified to lead us through this capital
funds campaign. We are fortunate that he has accepted the appointment, and we are grateful for his profound commitment to the University.”
Rainey is chairman of Hunton & Williams, one of the nation’s largest law firms.
As national chairman of U.Va.’s campaign, which aims to raise $3 billion by 2012, and chairman of the University’s Campaign Executive Committee, Rainey will play a key role in setting campaign policy and will serve as one of the principal spokespersons for the fund-raising effort. He also will be involved in seeking donor support for major campaign priorities.
“All of us on the University’s advancement team are delighted that Gordon Rainey has accepted the position of campaign chair,” said Robert D. Sweeney, senior vice president for development and public affairs.
“Given all he accomplished as rector, it seems especially appropriate that he lead this effort. He was instrumental in the creation of the AccessUVa financial aid program and Virginia’s restructuring legislation, two crucial measures that, along with increased philanthropic support, form the basis of the University’s vision as a new model for public higher education in America. With his long history of leadership — in law, in the Alumni Association, and in numerous other areas across Grounds — he is uniquely qualified for this critical role.”
Rainey will be assisted by two vice chairmen: Everette L. Doffermyre of Atlanta and John L. Nau III of Houston. Like Rainey, Doffermyre is a past president of the U.Va. Alumni Association. A 1970 graduate of the College of Arts & Sciences who earned a law degree at U.Va. in 1973, he is managing partner of the law firm of Doffermyre, Shields, Canfield, Knowles & Devine LLC. In addition to serving as vice chairman, Doffermyre will head the National Committee on University Resources, a network of campaign volunteers.
Nau is president of the University’s College Foundation, which is dedicated to advancing U.Va.’s College and Graduate School of
Arts & Sciences. He also leads the Council of Chairs, which includes representatives from the boards of the related foundations that raise money for U.Va.’s schools and other divisions. A 1968 graduate of the College of Arts & Sciences and a former member of the Alumni Association’s Board of Managers, he is chairman, president and CEO
of Silver Eagle Distributors, the nation’s second-largest distributor of Anheuser-Busch products.
Intended to meet Universitywide priorities as well as those of individual schools and departments, the campaign encompasses funding goals for all areas of the institution. It will seek gifts for such purposes as scholarships and fellowships for students; endowed positions for faculty; support for academic, student-life and health-care programs; and new and renovated buildings for teaching, research, athletics, the arts and patient care. The University began counting gifts for the campaign in January 2004 and has scheduled the public launch for September 2006.
With state support for higher education dwindling in the face of competing public priorities, private support is critical in providing the margin of excellence for the University, Rainey said.
“The University is poised to advance to the front rank of American institutions of higher education. To achieve that vision, we must succeed in this campaign,” he said. “It is the most ambitious fund-raising effort ever undertaken by an American university. But no university has a more deeply loyal or generous following of alumni and friends than the University of Virginia. We will succeed.
“When we look back some years from now, I believe two factors
will stand out as having had the greatest influence on the ascendancy of the University: Success in this campaign and maintaining investment returns on our endowment that consistently rank in the first quartile.”
Toward that end, Rainey said that he would like to see the University’s endowment grow from its current $3 billion level to $10 billion in the next 10 to 12 years.
In addition to his duties at U.Va., Rainey is a trustee of the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation and a director of several corporations, including SunTrust Mid-Atlantic, The Colonial Williamsburg Co. and Bon Secours Richmond Health System.
Earlier this year, Rainey received the Distinguished Alumni Award from the Board of Trustees of U.Va.’s College Foundation. He is also a past recipient of the University’s Raven Award.