Butler University has announced a $25 million gift from Indianapolis-based LDI Ltd. Chairman Andre Lacy and his wife Julia. To honor the commitment, the school has renamed its College of Business the Andre B. Lacy School of Business. Butler says the gift, its largest ever from an individual or family, will help build on experiential learning programs, including students launching businesses and completing multiple internships. Lacy will also serve as a senior adviser for the school, which he says will allow him to mentor students and pass down what he’s learned.
Butler President James Danko says the school is "deeply grateful" for the investment, saying the partnership "brings together recognized champions of business and education, and will further extend Butler’s national reputation as an innovative, world-class institution."
Dean Stephen Standifird says the gift will help boost what he considers an already-strong experiential learning program at Butler. As part of the School of Business curriculum, students complete a business plan in their first year, launch a company as a sophomore, and complete two internships before graduation. Lacy says that experience leads to students "seeing first-hand the challenges they face, and learning the art and science of developing and selling solutions that have real value in the business market."
Lacy served as chief executive officer of LDI from 1983 to 2006, and has been chairman of the board since 1992. He began as an analyst for U.S. Corrugated-Fiber Box Co., which eventually became LDI. The company now employs more than 3,000 people in more than 20 countries. Lacy remains active on boards including Hulman & Co. and the Indiana State Fair Commission.
Lacy says he’s looking forward to his advisory role.
Standifird outlines next steps in the partnership with Lacy.
Danko says there is value in having Lacy’s name attached to the school.