COLUMBUS, Ohio – President E. Gordon Gee announced today a $10 million gift from central Ohio-based retailer Abercrombie & Fitch to The Ohio State University. The gift will support research and patient care initiatives in inflammatory bowel/digestive diseases at The Ohio State University Medical Center and in women’s oncology at the Arthur G. James Cancer Hospital and Richard J. Solove Research Institute. The gift will be split evenly between the two areas.
With the receipt of the initial funds from the gift, The Ohio State University Board of Trustees approved the creation of two endowed funds, the Abercrombie & Fitch Women’s Oncology Center Endowment Fund and the Abercrombie & Fitch Fund in Inflammatory Bowel Disease.
“This generous gift from Abercrombie & Fitch will allow us to pursue a multi-pronged trans-institutional approach that we hope will one day lead to better prevention, detection and treatment of these diseases,” says Gee. “This endowment will help enhance the quality of life and improve people’s daily lives in our communities.”
The $5 million gift directed toward the Digestive Disease Center will be placed in permanent endowments to create a chair in Inflammatory Bowel Disease/Digestive Disease and another to support faculty recruitment and research. The $5 million gift to the women’s health initiative will be placed in a current use fund and a permanent endowment to support research and program expansion and treatment of women’s malignancies in cancer.
“We are thrilled to extend the impact of our community based philanthropy initiatives to The Ohio State University Medical Center. This investment reflects the confidence we have in the medical center to provide the highest quality care and research to its patients,” said Thomas D. Lennox, vice president, corporate communications for Abercrombie & Fitch.
“We are very excited about this partnership with Abercrombie & Fitch,” said Dr. Wiley ‘Chip’ Souba Jr., dean of Ohio State's College of Medicine and interim senior vice president and executive dean for Health Sciences and CEO of the Medical Center. “This gift will help accelerate our Medical Center expansion plans and research in cancer and digestive disease while giving us the opportunity to greatly improve patient care.”
Souba said Dr. Hagop Mekhjian, chief medical officer of the Ohio State University Health System, and Dr. David Schuller, vice president of Medical Center Expansion and Outreach, were instrumental in working with leaders at Abercrombie & Fitch to make the company’s wishes a reality.
This gift will add to the success of The Ohio State University Medical Center’s “The Power to Change Lives” fundraising campaign, which to date has raised more than $385 million to support Ohio State’s three-part mission of research, education and patient care.# # #
Medical Center Communications