Foundation gifts $70M to UI -- largest ever -- for hospital

February 15, 2022 GMT

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) — The foundation of the late Des Moines businessman and philanthropist, Richard Jacobson, has announced a $70 million gift to the University of Iowa for a new hospital to be built across from Kinnick Stadium.

The donation is the largest in the university’s 175-year history. The Richard O. Jacobson Foundation announced the gift Tuesday to go toward the new University of Iowa Hospitals & Clinics patient care tower.

The hospital will bear Jacobson’s name, pending approval from Iowa’s Board of Regents. The new facility will feature single inpatient rooms, state-of-the-art operating rooms and intensive care unit beds in an effort to address capacity issues, rising health care demands and aging facilities.

“Over the next decade, Iowa will face a health care crisis related to an aging population with complex care needs,” UI Vice President for Medical Affairs Brooks Jackson said in a written statement. “This new facility is an important piece of a larger plan to meet these needs, and this visionary gift will positively impact the lives of Iowans throughout the state for generations to come.”

Jacobson was the founder of Des Moines-based shipping and logistics company Jacobson Cos. He graduated from University of Iowa but was a major donor to all of Iowa’s public universities and other initiatives.

He died in 2016 at the age of 79.