University of Pittsburgh
October 17, 2004

Retired Ford Motor Company Executive Makes $1 Million Gift to Pitt's Katz Graduate School of Business

Contact:  412-624-4147

PITTSBURGH—Harold "Red" Poling, retired chair and chief executive officer of Ford Motor Company, has made a $1 million gift to the University of Pittsburgh's Joseph M. Katz Graduate School of Business. The unrestricted gift will be used for facilities improvements in the Katz School's Mervis Hall that will benefit students, faculty, staff, and alumni.

Throughout his more than 43 years at Ford, Poling, a friend of the University, says he learned to recognize the outstanding quality of the Katz School's business programs through Ford employees who had graduated from the University of Pittsburgh. According to Poling, he was impressed with their sound business acumen, which he attributed to the superior education they received at Pitt, as well as to their work ethic.

"The University of Pittsburgh is truly honored to receive such a generous gift from Mr. Poling," said Chancellor Mark A. Nordenberg. "It is especially gratifying that an executive of Mr. Poling's stature—one who knows firsthand the critical role that education plays in the development of our nation's workforce—has shown his enthusiasm for our business school's programs and its graduates in such a special way. We greatly appreciate his support."

Poling's relationship with the University began with his volunteering to serve as an industry leader on the Katz School's Board of Visitors; today he is an emeritus member of the board. He also helped to strengthen the relationship between Ford and the Katz School. "I greatly respect the University of Pittsburgh and am pleased that I can help the Katz School in its efforts toward continued excellence," said Poling.

"We're very grateful for this gift," said Rick Winter, dean of the Katz School. "We have an ongoing commitment to students, faculty, and staff to update our facilities and provide a first-rate, professional environment. To have an executive like Red Poling share in this vision is a great honor."

The Poling gift brings Pitt's Discover a World of Possibilities fundraising campaign total to $725 million; the campaign's goal is $1 billion.