July 8, 2014—A $1 million commitment to the University of Denver from Chancellor Emeritus Daniel Ritchie will be matched by the University to provide a total of $2 million in scholarship support for graduate students in the Lamont School of Music.
The Jessie Dee Ritchie Endowed Graduate Scholarship Fund for Music is named in honor of Mr. Ritchie's mother. "My mother was a singer before she met my father," says Mr. Ritchie. "She introduced me to opera and instilled in me a love of music. I'm pleased that I can extend this appreciation to others and support promising young students."
The gift will create scholarship funding for exceptionally talented graduate students studying in a variety of disciplines. Lamont is a performance-focused school, committed to providing excellent, innovative musical training, as well as the skills and experiences necessary for a successful career as a musician in a changing environment.
"We are thrilled to receive this gift from Mr. Ritchie," says Nancy Cochran, director of the Lamont School of Music. "Increased graduate scholarship funding will enable Lamont to be more competitive on the national and international stage while elevating it to be one of the leading and most forward-thinking music schools."
Mr. Ritchie's vision and love for the arts helped to establish the Robert and Judi Newman Center for Performing Arts on the University of Denver campus. This paved the way for the Lamont School of Music to return to campus in 2002 from its Park Hill location. In 2013, he made the largest single donation in the University's history to name the Daniel Felix Ritchie School of Engineering and Computer Science in honor of his father. Mr. Ritchie served as the University's chancellor for 16 years between 1989 and 2005 and as chairman of the Board of Trustees from 2005 to 2007.
Support for scholarships was a hallmark of the recently completed $480-million ASCEND campaign, resulting in 576 new scholarships. Many gifts to scholarships were matched dollar-for-dollar through a scholarship matching program and a separate performing arts matching program.