• Emöke Szathmáry, President of the University of Manitoba, Dean Jerry Gray, Israel Asper and Art Mauro, at the naming of the Asper School of Business.

  • Israel Asper, Dean Jerry Gray, Campaign co-chair Bill Watchorn, Moe Levy and Campaign co-chair Arni Thorsteinson at the celebration of the $20 million raised for the school.

“It’s time for the private sector to pick up their responsibilities. Governments can no longer dole out all the money to universities.”

“The generosity of Dr. Israel Asper helped transform our Business School, inspiring our students, faculty and staff to attain the highest standards of excellence.”

“By allowing his name to grace one of our academic units, Dr. Israel Asper indicates to the world that this faculty and this university are worthy of his, and thereby others’ support.”

I.H. Asper School of Business

On May 24, 2000, the University of Manitoba announced the naming of the Faculty of Management as the I.H. Asper School of Business to recognize and honour the achievements of Israel Asper, O.C., O.M., Q.C., distinguished alumnus, Manitoban and Canadian.

Motivated by the belief that the University of Manitoba is a pivotal and indispensable cornerstone of all aspects of life in Manitoba, The Asper Foundation has always been a loyal supporter of the school. The university has benefited greatly over the years, including the establishment of the Asper Centre for Entrepreneurship in the Faculty of Management and the Asper Chair in International Business and Trade Law in the Faculties of Law and Management. Early in 2000, responding to government cutbacks and what Israel Asper called “an appalling lack of private sector endowments”, The Asper Foundation made a multimillion dollar donation to the university hoping to set an example to others about the importance of funding education. The university responded by naming the Faculty of Management for I.H. Asper. In November 2000, Israel Asper made a $10 million gift to the I.H. Asper School of Business, launching the school’s $30 million fundraising campaign. Again he challenged other businesses and individuals to add their support, saying that anyone who has gone to the university should also give a little.

Israel Asper’s contributions to the I.H. Asper School of Business spanned more than two decades. In 1982 he served as a member on the founding Board of the Associates, a membership of senior-level executives and leaders who share and suppose the Asper School of Business’ commitment to excellence in business education. A letter written by John F. Fraser on November 30, 1982, thanks Israel Asper for “playing a key role in the establishment of the Associations”. Mr. Asper maintained his membership with the Associates of the I,H. Asper School of Business until his passing. In addition, Mr. Asper was the 14th recipient of the International Distinguished Entrepreneur Award in 1997, a prestigious, nationally recognized award presented on behalf of the Asper School of Business and the University of Manitoba and presented at a dinner hosted by the Associates, which honours a business executive who has achieved entrepreneurial success and has made an exemplary contribution to economic life.

Coinciding with the announcement of Israel Asper’s $10 million gift to the business school, The Asper Commemorative Room was officially opened on November 30, 2000. The room contains a graphic representation of Israel Asper’s many achievements in the areas of law, business, community service and philanthropy. It serves as a student study lounge and the professionally designed exhibits stand as inspiring testimony to the accomplishments of one of the university’s most illustrious alumni.

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