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$30 million gift from Donald K. Johnson to Western University
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$30 million gift from Donald K. Johnson to Western University

The Ivey Business School at Western University announced a landmark $30-million gift from Donald K. Johnson, O.C., MBA ’63, LLD ’07, supporting a spectacular new downtown Toronto campus.

This transformational gift is the largest single donation from an individual ever received by Ivey and Western. The gift will support the new Donald K. Johnson Centre for Ivey’s programming in Toronto. The facility will allow the School to expand oversubscribed while-you-work program offerings. It will also provide limitless executive education opportunities for The Ivey Academy, and exceptional event space for alumni and student programming, symposiums, and idea forums, bringing Ivey research to practice.

“I’m very gratified to see the expansion of the Ivey campus in Toronto,” said Johnson. “Doing my MBA at Ivey enabled me to start a new career in an area I was very passionate about. I feel it’s the best opportunity for me to give back to a place that has had such a profound impact on my career, and in my personal life. My philosophy about philanthropy is that it’s better to give it away with a warm hand, than a cold hand. So, I’m glad I can do this now.”

The 36,000-square-foot facility located in First Canadian Place (77 Adelaide Street W.) in the space formerly home to the Toronto Board of Trade, is triple the footprint of Ivey’s current Toronto campus in the Exchange Tower. The new campus will double both Ivey’s classroom and study room capacity, and will provide a 21st-century educational experience complete with the latest in innovative classroom learning technology. An expansive 300-person event space will enable Ivey to host large-scale signature events in a premium downtown location.

“I am really excited about the opportunities and possibilities this new space will open up for us,” said Sharon Hodgson, Dean, Ivey Business School. “It aligns with Ivey’s renewed mission and purpose which drives our Ivey Next strategic ambitions. One of the many benefits is that with a greater presence in Toronto, we will be able to create even greater connectivity with the business community and further elevate our research to practice commitment. Not only does it give it space to expand existing programs, it lets us dream of new opportunities. I’d like to express my sincere gratitude to Don [Johnson] for his dedication and belief in Ivey’s mission and helping to make it a reality.”

Ivey’s current Toronto campus in the Exchange Tower was renamed the Donald K. Johnson Centre in 2019 in recognition of Johnson’s unwavering commitment to Ivey. The existing facility will continue to run programs until the completion of the new space.

“For decades, Don [Johnson] has been a tireless champion for our university and business school, and his advocacy on behalf of the charitable sector has transformed the way philanthropy is able to help not-for-profit organizations across the country,” said Western president Alan Shepard.” We are deeply grateful for his visionary leadership and his enormous generosity.”


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