Wolstein Foundation commits $4.9 million to Ohio State
September 7, 2012
Ohio State President Dr. E. Gordon Gee (left) celebrates the Bertram L. and Iris S. Wolstein Foundation commitment with Max M. Fisher College of Business Dean Christine Poon, Iris Wolstein, and Ohio State Head Soccer Coach Bluem.
The Bertram L. and Iris S. Wolstein Foundation recently committed $4.9 million to The Ohio State University, with $3.4 million going to Max M. Fisher College of Business and $1.5 million to the Department of Athletics. The commitment was presented to Ohio State President E. Gordon Gee by Iris S. Wolstein at Ohio Stadium during the Sept. 1 Ohio State vs. Miami football game.
When approved by The Ohio State University Board of Trustees, the gift to Max M. Fisher College of Business will establish the Bert L. and Iris S. Wolstein Entrepreneurial Leadership Initiative Fund, consisting of three programs designed to inspire and educate current and future entrepreneurs.
The Bert L. and Iris S. Wolstein Entrepreneurial Leadership Fund will support the newly created Bert L. and Iris S. Wolstein Seminar in Entrepreneurial Leadership, a capstone course for advanced students that will incorporate leadership lessons from Mr. Wolstein’s autobiography, Crossing the Road to Entrepreneurship. Students who successfully complete the seminar will be recognized within Fisher as Bert L. and Iris S. Wolstein Scholars and will graduate with a Distinction in Entrepreneurship.
This gift will also create and support the entrepreneurial internship program for students and an entrepreneurial leadership summit for executives. Faculty members assigned to oversee any of the three aspects of this program will be known as Bert L. and Iris S. Wolstein Fellows.
The commitment to the Department of Athletics, when approved by The Ohio State University Board of Trustees, will establish The Bert and Iris Wolstein Men’s Soccer Fund and name the Bert L. and Iris S. Wolstein Field at Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium.
In 2006, Ohio State named the annual season-opening men’s soccer tournament The Bert and Iris Wolstein Soccer Classic for the couple, who first brought professional soccer to Ohio in 1979. To further honor their generosity, Ohio State will place a “Bert and Iris Wolstein Classic” logo on the soccer field during the Wolstein Soccer Classic.
The late Bert Wolstein founded Heritage Development Company, a full service real estate firm headquartered in Moreland Hills, Ohio, involved in residential, industrial, and commercial real estate projects across the country. Wolstein was also founder and chairman emeritus of Developers Diversified Realty, one of the nation’s largest and most successful real estate investment trusts.
Iris S. Wolstein is president of Heritage Development Company, where she oversees operations for Heritage Development and other subsidiaries, including The Bertram Inn & Conference Center in Aurora, Ohio, and Glenmore Country Club in Canton, Ohio. She is also in partnership with her son Scott Wolstein in the development of the flats east project in Cleveland, Ohio. In addition to running the firm, Mrs. Wolstein carries on her husband’s legacy through her involvement in a number of charitable organizations and through the couple’s ongoing philanthropy, including Ohio State, University Hospitals, Case Western Reserve University, United Cerebral Palsy, First Tee of Cleveland, and the Iris S. and Bert L. Wolstein Kids Kicking Cancer Program in conjunction with Rainbow Babies & Children’s Hospital.