NU receives donation for facilities campaign

Northwestern has received another significant donation toward its new lakeside athletic complex. A gift of $15 million was donated by Lanny and Sharon Martin.

With another significant donation offered, Northwestern's fundraising efforts for its athletic-facilities campaign is way ahead of schedule.

A donation of $15 million from Lanny and Sharon Martin has the campaign at the $70 million mark.

"We cannot possibly thank the Martins enough for their generosity in support of this transformational period for Northwestern Athletics and Recreation," said athletic director Jim Phillips in a statement. "Their contribution will play a pivotal role in our commitment to providing a world-class experience academically, socially and athletically for our student-athletes."

The $220 million project was approved by the Northwestern board of trustees in September, setting the plans for a lakeside multi-sport athletic complex on the university's Evanston campus.

In late December, gifts of $55 million were announced, with the lead gift from Pat and Shirley Ryan. The fieldhouse inside the complex will be named the Ryan Fieldhouse in honor of the donation.

To recognize the Martin's donation toward the campaign, the soccer and lacrosse field will be named in their honor.

"We are deeply grateful for Lanny and Sharon's generous investment in the University's future," said Northwestern President Morton Schapiro. "The gift recognizes that athletics play a pivotal role in the life of the University, and the benefits of the new complex will extend to the entire Northwestern community."

The rapid response of donations toward the landmark project has set a projected groundbreaking date for the summer of 2013.

Chris Emma has covered recruiting, college athletics and professional baseball for FOX Sports Next since 2009. Emma covered the Nebraska Cornhuskers for Big Red Report, and currently covers the Northwestern Wildcats. He resides on Chicago's north side.
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