Office of the President

May 14, 2014

Gifts from Washington Research Foundation fund Husky innovation

Office of the President

President Young recently sent an email to the University community announcing a new, generous gift from one of the UW’s biggest supporters, Washington Research Foundation. Below is the official email announcing the details of the gift.


Dear Colleagues,

New opportunities are on the horizon for Huskies and the people we serve, thanks to an investment in innovation by Washington Research Foundation (WRF). Today, we announce a $31.2 million investment by WRF in four UW research initiatives, a show of support that speaks volumes to the UW’s strength as a center for enterprising innovators in our region.

The size and scope of WRF’s gifts to the UW are unprecedented. This represents entrepreneurial Washington investing in its research university and makes a strong statement about the importance of local investment. The four teams of grant recipients are among the UW’s most productive and creative faculty. We are incredibly proud of their achievements and deeply grateful to the foundation for its vote of confidence in their work.

The first award is an $8 million gift to launch a postdoctoral fellowship program for the Institute for Protein Design (IPD). Postdocs are critical to the success of the IPD’s outcomes, and this investment will help bring ideas out of the laboratory and into the lives of people who will benefit most from breakthroughs in protein design.

WRF also committed $7.2 million to jumpstart an Institute for Neuroengineering, which will bring faculty, students and postdoctoral researchers from several disciplines on board to develop new technologies for people affected by neural disorders.

The eScience Institute was awarded $9.3 million to embolden its global leadership in Big Data. The funding will support the institute’s work to find data-intensive breakthroughs in a breadth of disciplines.

And the Clean Energy Institute will receive $6.7 million to help recruit innovative faculty and postdoctoral fellows focused on advancing solutions in solar energy production, storage and delivery.

Details on each of these gifts are available on the UW Today website.

This is a watershed moment for the UW and WRF. Through this incredible partnership, we will bring our shared vision of innovation and implementing ideas into action to address some of our greatest challenges. Our sincere thanks to Washington Research Foundation. We are fortunate to have such a good friend.

Michael K Young signature
Michael K. Young