Australian Developer Pledges Record $50.1 Million for Medical Research

Australian Developer Pledges Record $50.1 Million for Medical Research

The in Australia has announced a $50.1 million (US$45.1 million) pledge from property developer Clive Berghofer.

The gift will provide a guaranteed $2 million (US$1.8 million) a year over the next twenty-five years and enable the institute, which is focused on cancer, infectious diseases, and mental health research, to recruit more scientists and purchase the most up-to-date equipment, QIMR director Frank Gannon told the . In recognition of the largest single philanthropic gift in Australian history, QIMR will be renamed the QIMR Berghofer Medical Research Institute.

"The funds will be used to enable us to continue our cutting-edge research," said Gannon. "They will enable us to expand our recruitment program, provide strong support for students, and ensure our staff have state-of-the-art equipment."

One of Queensland's richest men, with a fortune estimated at $110 million (US$288 million), Berghofer, now 78, left school at the age of 13 to work in a sawmill. At one point, he served simultaneously as a member of the state assembly and as mayor of Toowoomba, while also running the Wilsonton Hotel and his property development business. In 2001, Berghofer donated more than $10 million (US$9 million) to QIMR, which named its cancer research center in his honor.

"There's heaps of people with plenty of money who don't give," Berghofer told the Courier-Mail. "Australians are not really generous when it comes to giving. Some people want you to give, but they don't give themselves. I like to lead by example.'"

"." Queensland Institute of Medical Research Press Release 08/07/2013. Janelle Miles. "." Courier-Mail 08/07/2013.