Butler University President James Danko announced Saturday, April 23, the permanent naming of the new 44,000-square foot sciences expansion building as Levinson Family Hall in honor of a $10 million commitment from Frank ‘75 and Kristin Levinson to the sciences expansion and renovation project. The gift was announced during an event in Hinkle Fieldhouse to celebrate the success of Butler Beyond: The Campaign for Butler University, which concludes May 31, 2022. Danko revealed that 34,804 donors have collectively contributed $263,556,435.92 to the campaign thus far, exceeding the University’s $250 million goal.
The sciences project is one of the key fundraising priorities for the campaign. Levinson Family Hall, which connects Gallahue Hall to the Holcomb Building, opened to the public in the summer of 2021 and includes new classrooms, labs, work spaces, and a nearly 13,200-square foot glass atrium overlooking the west mall. The $10 million commitment combines a $5 million gift from 2018, which jumpstarted the University’s fundraising efforts for the sciences project, and an additional $5 million commitment that was secured over the past month.
“Frank and Kristin Levinson are incredible champions for the sciences at Butler University,” Danko said. “The generous gift they have provided reflects a deep commitment to Butler students and faculty, and to the education of future leaders in science, innovation, business, and technology. I am profoundly grateful to Frank and Kristin for their generosity and investment in our University.”
Frank Levinson grew up in Indianapolis and earned his undergraduate degree in physics and mathematics from Butler in 1975. He went on to earn a master’s degree and PhD in astronomy from the University of Virginia, and in 2006 received an honorary doctorate from Butler.
The Levinson family has a long history with Butler and with one of its most iconic buildings. Frank’s father, Alan “Buzz” Levinson, earned a Master of Science in Education from Butler in 1953, during which time he helped install and align the telescope at Holcomb Observatory. Frank’s mother and brother also earned Butler degrees.
Levinson’s generous philanthropic support of Butler over the past 15 years has greatly expanded educational opportunities for students in nearly all of the sciences disciplines. In 2008, he made a significant gift that allowed Butler to join the Southeastern Association for Research in Astronomy, a consortium of universities with remote access to telescopes in some of the darkest locations in the world, allowing Butler students at all levels and majors the opportunity to participate in original research astronomy and explore parts of the sky that would not otherwise be visible from Indianapolis.
His previous donations also allowed Butler to purchase its first supercomputer and to establish a partnership with the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute in Panama, which includes a student internship program. Levinson’s philanthropy has also supported ongoing updates to the Holcomb Observatory and support for students and faculty attending or presenting research at national scientific conferences.
The Levinsons now reside in the San Francisco Bay area where Frank works as an entrepreneur and investor with a venture capital firm committed to the growth and adoption of renewable energy generation and sustainable technology.
“This gift is not about me, but is a testament to all those who invested in me and my education, including my family and a number of excellent Butler faculty members,” Frank Levinson said. “I want to support Butler and I realize sometimes it is helpful for others to see people step forward to give. This expansion and renovation project will have a profound impact on generations of Butler students, and I am proud to be able to help provide the kind of quality facilities Butler students and faculty deserve.”
Butler Beyond: The Campaign for Butler University is the University’s largest-ever comprehensive fundraising campaign with a goal of $250 million to support student access and success, innovations in teaching and learning, and community partnerships.The Butler Beyond campaign officially concludes on May 31, 2022 and any additional gifts made through that date will count in the final campaign totals.
About Butler University
Butler University is a nationally recognized comprehensive university encompassing six colleges: Arts, Business, Communication, Education, Liberal Arts & Sciences, and Pharmacy & Health Sciences. Approximately 4,500 undergraduate and 1,000 graduate students are enrolled at Butler, representing 46 states and 22 countries. More than 75 percent of Butler students will participate in some form of internship, and Butler students have had significant success after graduation, as demonstrated by the University’s 97 percent placement rate within one year of graduation. The University was recently listed as the No. 1 regional university in the Midwest, according to the U.S. News & World Report Best Colleges Rankings, in addition to being included in The Princeton Review’s annual “best colleges” guidebook.