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Donors give $1 million in honor of retiring dean

Friends and colleagues of Dean Robert Anderson convened in the College of Business Administration to bid farewell to one of the College’s most influential administrators and welcome a $1.02-million gift.

Anderson is retiring after 30 years at USF, 10 of which were spent as the dean of COBA. Anderson’s tenure will end in August.

Frank and Carol Morsani presented the money to start a global business professorship in Anderson’s name.

The gift was announced Friday at a short reception for the university community and the media.

USF President Judy Genshaft was on hand to introduce the Morsanis and promote USF’s 50th anniversary.

“The Morsanis are very special people in the community, to USF and around the world,” Genshaft said.

The Morsanis have both served on many boards in the community and across the United States. Frank was the chair of the board of directors of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, and Carol serves on the board of the H. Lee Moffit Cancer Center.

Both Morsanis have also received honorary doctorates from USF for their service to the University.

At the reception, Frank Morsani said Anderson contributed to a large part of USF’s growth.

“It is our deep pleasure to be able to leave a tribute and have (Anderson) memorialized in this institution,” he said.

When Anderson rose to speak, he experienced difficulty in expressing his gratitude.

“It’s hard to describe what this gift means, but I’m going to try,” Anderson said. “It’s a very special day, certainly for the University, for this college and for me personally.”

Anderson said COBA began when there were seven faculty and two staff members. According to Anderson, this year COBA was one of a select few business colleges to have all its programs accredited by the American Association of Collegiate Schools of Business.

Throughout his time at USF, Anderson has witnessed this achievement, the construction of the Quinn Atrium and the ranking of USF’s entrepreneurial program as one of the top in the country.Anderson said that he is proud of his work as dean, but gave support to his faculty for making the College what it is today.

As the reception came to a close, Anderson expressed his appreciation of the gift to the Morsanis.

“A simple thank you is all I can say, over and over again,” Anderson said.