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New Art and Art History Building

$12 Million Gift from Real Estate Investor Ed Dowd Advances the Role of Arts in Education at Santa Clara University

A veteran real-estate investor, financier, and CEO who has learned the healing qualities of art has donated $12 million to Santa Clara University to help build a grand, three-story art and art history facility on campus by 2016.

The generous gift of Ed Dowd, owner of EMD Properties, Inc., Los Altos, forms the foundation for a campaign that aims to raise $26 million for the new 43,500-square-foot building.

The modern and dramatic Edward M. Dowd Art and Art History Building will unite SCU’s entire undergraduate community around creativity and innovation, offering centralized studio space, classrooms, gallery displays, a sculpture garden, as well as ample space for faculty, students, visiting artists, and scholars to congregate.

“We are deeply honored and grateful that Ed Dowd has so generously provided this important foundation upon which Santa Clara University will build the new artistic center of campus,” said Michael Engh, S.J., president of Santa Clara University.

Dowd, who graduated from Santa Clara University in 1972 with a degree in science and commerce, said he became interested in art after the purchase of his home in San Francisco where he began collecting art. This led to the funding of a public-art project at Palo Alto Medical Foundation’s Mountain View campus, where he receives treatment for the multiple sclerosis that’s been part of his life since 1993.

“Art transcends all time and seems like a great cause to me,” said Dowd, who says he wants his legacy to extend beyond business causes.  “I have a desire to use my resources to create a better world, and I feel a world filled with art is a far more enjoyable place."

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