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Date: October 21, 1999
Icahn Family Foundation Gives $20 Million for New Genomics Laboratory
PRINCETON, NJ -- The Icahn Family Foundation has made a gift of $20 million to construct a state-of-the-art laboratory building on the Princeton University campus. Carl C. Icahn, the founder and president of the foundation, is a member of Princeton's Class of 1957. The Carl C. Icahn Laboratory will be home to Princeton's new interdisciplinary Institute for Integrative Genomics, and its sophisticated facilities will be designed to support pioneering research on genomics -- the study of genes and their function -- and related biological studies.
"This generous gift will allow Princeton to accelerate its critical research efforts in the fast-evolving field of life science, where so many important discoveries seem imminent," said University President Harold T. Shapiro. "We are grateful for the foundation's support and leadership in this challenging endeavor."
The new Carl C. Icahn Laboratory will be located at the south end of Princeton's historic campus, adjacent to the University's molecular biology laboratories. In this innovative new facility, investigators from the widest range of scientific disciplines will work together to translate the wealth of advanced information on the human genome into important discoveries about biological processes. Construction of the new building, which will include teaching areas along with high-tech laboratories and core facilities, is expected to begin next summer and to be completed by early 2002.
According to Shirley Tilghman, Princeton's Howard A. Prior Professor of the Life Sciences and founding director of the institute, the building will accommodate 12 faculty members and more than 100 associated undergraduates, graduate students, postdoctoral scholars and technical support staff.
"I can think of no more exciting area of research than genomics, which holds the promise of giving us new insight into the nature of life itself," Icahn said. "And with Princeton's long reputation for innovations in science, I can think of no more appropriate location for this groundbreaking new research center."
Icahn, who majored in philosophy at Princeton, began his career as a stockbroker in 1961. Now one of the best-known figures in American business and finance, Icahn is president and CEO of his own firm, Icahn & Co., Inc., which he started in 1968. His investment firm specializes in such areas as real estate development, oil and gas, railcar leasing and manufacturing, and technology firms.
A noted philanthropist, with a special interest in abused and neglected children, Icahn serves as chairman of the board of Children's Rights Inc., a non-profit organization that advocates for the rights of poor children dependent on government systems. He is also the founder of Icahn House, a home for single mothers and their children. The Icahn Family Foundation supports a broad range of charitable and educational organizations. An active supporter of several educational institutions, Icahn has established the Icahn Scholars Program at Choate Rosemary Hall, as well as institutes at the Benjamin N. Cardoza School of Law and the Wurzweiler School of Social Work. In addition, he has created scholarships at a number of schools, including Princeton.
The foundation's gift is part of The Anniversary Campaign for Princeton, launched in 1995 to celebrate the 250th anniversary of the signing of the University's charter. The campaign, which now has raised more than $860 million, is seeking to raise a total of $900 million to strengthen the University's programs of teaching, scholarship and research.
NOTE: A portrait of Carl Icahn is available at http://www.princeton.edu/pr/pictures/g-k/icahn/