Harvard: Buh-bye Larry and Buh-bye $115 Million
With the departure of Lawrence Summers this Friday from Harvard, also walking is the $115 million donation that Larry Ellison, founder and CEO of Oracle, had pledged. Apparently Summers and Ellison were well aquainted and Summers was the architect of this donation/program and with Summers leaving Harvard Ellison has reconsidered his donation. The largest donation Harvard would have ever gotten.
“It’s official,” said Oracle spokesman Bob Wynne. “The reason is the relationship he had with Larry Summers, who leaves this week. Larry Summers was the brainchild of this whole concept. With his departure, Larry (Ellison) reconsidered his decision.”
The donation would have been the biggest gift in Harvard’s history. The pledge was also the 10th-largest American charitable contribution in 2005, giving Ellison a spot as the seventh-most generous donor in the United States on a list published by the Chronicle of Philanthropy, even though he didn’t actually hand over a dime.
The agreement, which was never signed, also called for Ellison to consider donating $500 million more if an external review of the center was favorable.
Whoops. Oh well, easy come easy go.