In another example of the rich getting richer, the Duke University Athletics Department has announced that they have received a gift of $13 million from an alumnus and his wife.
Duke president Richard H. Brodhead announced on Friday that Blue Devil alum Steve Brooks and his wife, Eileen, have committed the sizable donation to the athletic department, and as a result, the Duke Board of Trustees has decided to approve a recommendation that the football field be named Brooks Field at Wallace Wade Stadium.
In regard to the gift, Brodhead said, “Lifting Duke football to the level of the rest of the university has been one of the pleasures of recent years, and Steve and Eileen Brooks have been steadfast friends throughout that process. We are grateful for their generosity, which will provide a strong foundation for the student-athlete experience at Duke.”
Translation: “Thank God for rich alumni; now maybe football can start pulling its weight around here.” We were unable to confirm rumors of Coach K doing handsprings across campus after the announcement.
In all seriousness, though, the Brooks family has a history of being incredibly generous toward the university, including support for the Brooks Building for Duke Football and the Brooks Practice Facility. Factoring in this latest gift, they have given more than $20 million to Duke.
Steve Brooks graduated from Duke in 1970, and is the president and CEO of the Phoenix American Insurance Group, Inc. He has served on the Duke Athletics Advisory Board, the Trinity Board of Visitors and the Duke Law School Board. His son, Matt, graduated from Duke in 2004 after receiving four varsity football letters. Matt Brooks received an MBA and a JD from Duke in 2009.
Steve Brooks said, “We are pleased to have a small part in the ongoing efforts, led by President Dick Brodhead, Director of Athletics Kevin White and coach David Cutcliffe to put Duke football on par with the very best college football programs in the nation. We want to thank all the athletic department football staff and coaches for their tireless efforts on behalf of Duke football and Duke University.”
*Featured Photo (above) credit to USA TODAY Sports