(St. Petersburg, Fla.) June 21, 2010 – Gus A. Stavros and his wife, Frances Stavros, grew their generous and longstanding commitment to USF St. Petersburg and the USF System with a $125,000 gift toward a conference room in the planned College of Business building at USFSP and a $150,000 gift to endow entrepreneurship scholarships. Their gift toward the building has the potential for a dollar-for-dollar match from the Florida legislature.
The Stavros family’s continued philanthropic investment in Pinellas County’s only public university has created educational opportunities for students through scholarships and enhanced resources. Their latest gifts to support the university’s growing College of Business will enhance the university experience for undergraduate students in the field of entrepreneurship and innovation.
Mr. Stavros serves on the Florida Board of Governors and is a former member of the USF Board of Trustees and the USFSP Campus Board. His and his wife’s commitment to education is unending, encompassing business education for elementary school students, fiscal responsibility for middle school students and educational opportunities for Florida’s future educators.
“It is imperative that we support our universities in a time of waning public resources,” Gus Stavros said. “Frances and I believe that the solution to the ills of the world is education, and we are proud to support USF St. Petersburg’s future growth.”
The Stavros family gift is the largest contribution thus far toward the campaign to build a permanent home for the College of Business. In recognition of the gift, the dean’s conference room in the future building will be named The Stavros Family Conference Room.
The College of Business at USFSP earned the rank of 36 among the global top 100 schools for integrating issues of social and environmental stewardship into the MBA program and is the only Florida institution on the list. The Global 100 list is compiled by the Aspen Institute’s Beyond Grey Pinstripes research survey which analyzes how well MBA programs incorporate social, environmental and ethical issues into the training of future business executives.
The college serves more than 2,000 students in its undergraduate and MBA programs and is accredited by AACSB International, the premier accrediting body for schools of business worldwide. Less than one-third of U.S. business schools are AACSB accredited. The Program of Accountancy is separately accredited through AACSB, giving the college a dual accreditation held by only three percent of business schools its size.
“The Stavros family gift permits us to provide the best possible educational opportunities for our students,” said USFSP Regional Chancellor Margaret Sullivan. “With this support USF St. Petersburg will make a critical difference in the future of our graduates and the local community.”
For more than two decades, Gus and Frances Stavros have upheld a commitment to education as a civic and philanthropic leader in the Tampa Bay community. Gus retired in 1989 after working 30 years to build the largest forms manufacturing company in the Southeast. A 1948 graduate of Columbia University and a World War II veteran of Patton’s Third Army, Stavros’ list of honors and awards include honorary degrees from three universities; leadership awards in business and education; and economic education centers named in his honor.
The Gus A. Stavros Institute of Pinellas County administers Enterprise Village and Finance Park, which are nationally prominent programs teaching free enterprise and economics to 17,000 fifth graders annually and fiscal responsibility to14,000 eighth graders annually.
“We’re honored to have the Stavros family support the College of Business through this gift,” said College of Business Dean Maling Ebrahimpour. “All of us at the College of Business strive to create a positive climate of learning and achievement. This gift will have a significant impact on these efforts. We appreciate the trust the Stavros family has placed in this strong and developing college.”