LAU held its fourth annual Fundraising Gala Dinner on December 10, honoring longtime friend and supporter Adnan Kassar, president and chairman of Fransabank.
Hosted at the Phoenicia Hotel, the event paid special recognition to Kassar’s generous gift of $10 million toward the naming of the Adnan Kassar School of Business.
“President Kassar, you are an example. You are a role model for all of us, and we thank you for that,” said Joseph G. Jabbra, president of LAU, in his welcoming remarks.
Jabbra also addressed the 800+ guests in attendance. He thanked them for their commitment to LAU, and their contribution to the university’s Fulfilling the Promise campaign which benefits students and faculty through scholarships, innovative facilities, and research opportunities.
“Your giving has allowed LAU to really build a house of wisdom – a city of hope for our youth, for your sons and daughters, and for your grandsons and daughters,” stated Jabbra.
The welcome note also included a presentation, recognizing Kassar’s greatest achievements during his career as a lawyer, banker, and leader of prominent economic associations worldwide.
The $10 million donation is one of the biggest philanthropic investments in the university’s history – and will go toward ensuring that the Adnan Kassar School of Business continues to bring about positive growth and development for Lebanon and the region.
“With pride, and with complete confidence, I chose to have my name linked with LAU, a leading university in Lebanon. I specifically wanted to be affiliated with the university’s school of business, and my ambition is for the school to carry my values and mission toward peace and education,” said Kassar in his speech.
With a history of endowments to LAU dating back to 2001, Kassar is a steadfast supporter of the community, with a special passion for education. He has contributed to various LAU scholarship grants and educational conferences which provide students with educational opportunities that will help them make a positive impact on society.
The celebration included many of the region’s most recognized political, economic, academic, and cultural figures. Among them were Lebanon’s Prime Minister Wife Lama Salam, Mona Hraoui, Leila El Solh Hamadeh, Raymond Audi, Adel Kassar, Commander of the Lebanese Army, General Jean Kahwaji, Director of Internal Security Forces General Ibrahim Basbous, Mayor of Beirut, Bilal Hamad, Elie Saab, Mohamad Shoucair, Ali Ghandour, May Makhzoumi, and many other esteemed individuals who support LAU.
In addition to paying tribute to Kassar’s admirable contribution, guests came together at the event to support LAU and its scholarship program, with all proceeds from gala ticket sales and sponsorships destined for the Gala Dinner Endowed Scholarship Fund.
The fund, which raises $1 to $2 million each year, is one of the many ways the university ensures that promising students are afforded an LAU education regardless of their economic standing. For the 2016-2017 academic year, LAU has allocated an unprecedented $25 million in scholarships and financial aid.