To be competitive on the global stage requires significant financial resources. Stephen’s gift will increase our endowment to a very competitive level and provide the funding we require to achieve our goal of being Canada’s most influential business school and one of the world’s most innovative.

This is an historic endowed donation, the largest ever given to a business school in Canada. It is unique not only in size, but also in its transformational potential. It is only appropriate to recognize the donor and his extraordinary gift through the naming of the Smith School of Business.

There are several reasons for doing this now. Business education is growing increasingly competitive, and major changes are happening globally. To continue our school’s tradition of excellence and to maintain and grow our position of strength, in Canada and around the globe, we need a significant investment in our endowment.

We are fortunate that the right donor emerged, with compatible goals and values, and an extraordinary offer. The gift is double the amount of the next largest gift ever made to a Canadian business school and is in line with the average amount for a U.S. business school naming.

Finally, the school has never been stronger and this gift will enable us to continue the very positive momentum we have established, building on the gifts from previous visionary donors Mel Goodes and Don Sobey, to remain competitive on the global stage, and to continue to attract the world’s best faculty and students.

Stephen is a loyal Queen’s alumnus with a long and very successful history in business. More importantly, he is a person of very high integrity who we feel shares our goals and values for the School. He cares very deeply about business and its social purpose. He has previously made numerous gifts to Queen’s. Stephen is an outstanding Canadian who will be a tremendous inspiration for our students. We are proud to be associated with his name.

Stephen is currently the Chairman of First National, Canada’s largest non-bank lender of residential and commercial mortgages. He also serves as the Chairman of Canada Guaranty, the second largest and only fully Canadian-owned private mortgage insurance provider in Canada. In 2007, Stephen received the Ernst & Young’s “Ontario Financial Services Entrepreneur of the Year” award.

Stephen graduated from Queen’s in 1972 with a Bachelor of Science (Honours) in electrical engineering and then obtained his Master of Science from the London School of Economics and Political Science. Stephen has a long association with Queen’s, including the establishment of bursaries for students in economics and engineering, a Chair in Economic Policy, as well as volunteering on the Queen’s University Initiative Campaign Cabinet. See Stephen’s full bio.

Stephen’s gift was $50 million. This is largest single gift ever made to a Canadian business school and it is in line with the average amount for a U.S. business school naming. It is his hope that this gift will inspire others to give, or take their giving to the next level, as he did.

Stephen’s gift will help to further raise Queen’s profile and reputation within Canada and internationally. With increasing global competition for the best faculty and students, this philanthropic investment is essential for the Smith School of Business to remain competitive and become a global leader. It will enable the school to continue to innovate and transform business education by attracting the best faculty from around the world and delivering an outstanding learning experience for its students.

In recognition of this generous gift, the business school name is permanently changed to the Stephen J. R. Smith School of Business at Queen’s University. Naming recognitions for gifts with endowed donations, which generate income for the university on an ongoing basis, are typically done in perpetuity.

No, your degree is granted by Queen’s University and no change is required to diplomas.

No. The undergraduate Commerce program will still be Queen’s Bachelor of Commerce and the Queen’s MBA will still be the Queen’s MBA. The same applies to all of our programs.

In his own words, “I see myself as a Queen’s University graduate. While I studied Engineering and Economics at Queen’s, I have always had a keen interest in business, and most of my career was spent in the finance and insurance industries. For these reasons, I chose to give my gift to the Business School.” Over the years, Stephen has also given generously to support student bursaries and a faculty professorship in both Engineering and Economics at Queen’s.

The university’s Board of Trustees and Senate approved the naming, with the unanimous support of the Faculty Board of the School of Business.

Absolutely. Goodes Hall was named in honour of Cedric and Mary Goodes, the parents of Queen’s alumnus Mel Goodes. We are extremely appreciative of Mel Goodes’ generosity.

No. In 2009, the Queen's Department of Mining Engineering received a $10 million donation from Robert M. Buchan, an alumnus and mining entrepreneur. In recognition of this gift, the Department was named the Robert M. Buchan Department of Mining Engineering.

This gift exclusively supports faculty chairs and scholarships at the School of Business. There are numerous other fundraising priorities in the School, including student bursaries, research centres, the Living Case initiative and new learning technologies.

This gift is actually part of the Queen’s Initiative Campaign – the most ambitious fundraising campaign in the university’s history. It includes many fundraising priorities across the university, and the campaign isn’t over yet. We thank the many individuals who have already supported Queen’s through the campaign and we look forward to the continued support of our alumni and friends.

Both the university and the donor believe very strongly in the academic freedom and autonomy of the School of Business, and they are protected in the terms of the agreement.