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IOWA CITY - P. Sue Beckwith, a former Iowa letterwinner, made a historic donation of $7 million to endow the Iowa women's basketball head coaching position.
'What impresses me the most is the vision she has had through her philanthropic effort,” Iowa women's basketball coach Lisa Bluder said in a news conference on Tuesday. 'Her vision was constant: it was targeted to find ways to help young women achieve high levels of success.
'She has always understood the worth of participating in sport.”
The gift, a first of its kind in the Big Ten Conference and one of the largest in history received by women's athletics, also will benefit the P. Sue Beckwith, MD, Black and Golden Opportunities Fund, providing support to all of Iowa's women's sports.
Beckwith, a graduate from both the undergraduate and medical programs at the University of Iowa, runs the Iowa Clinic Department of Surgery in Des Moines as one of the few colorectal surgeons in the area. Her pledge of $1 million helped build the boathouse for the Hawkeye rowing team, which has elevated its level of success.
In honor of Beckwith's most recent contribution, the head coach of the Iowa women's basketball team will carry the name the P. Sue Beckwith, MD, Head Women's Basketball Coach. In a news conference on Tuesday, athletics director Gary Barta compared the endowment to the 2017 donation by Henry and Patricia Tippie, earning him the title as Henry B. and Patricia B. Tippie Director of Athletics chair.
'Endowments are a really important part of securing a strong future,” Barta said. 'It's a wonderful day and fitting that Lisa Bluder is the first to carry this title.”
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