Mac and Leslie McQuown Give $25 Million to Chicago Booth

Published on June 15, 2010

Mac and Leslie McQuown, long-time friends of the University of Chicago, have made a $25 million gift to Chicago Booth.

The McQuown’s gift is given in appreciation of professor Gene Fama as a longtime colleague, partner and friend and in memory of Nobel laureate Merton Miller, a highly valued teacher and mentor to both Mac and Gene.

Mac is co-founder of Diversified Credit Investments, a San Francisco–based investment firm. He led the team at Wells-Fargo that, in 1971, created the first index fund, based on Fama’s efficient markets hypothesis and his own belief that computers and quantitative analysis could measure risk and return for virtually the entire equity market. Leslie is a trustee of the Aspen Music Festival, an interior designer, and active in organizations that focus on education and ecological sustainability. Together, Mac and Leslie have focused their talents and energies on making a difference in education, in a variety of ways and across multiple disciplines.

This gift will serve as the initial building block for Chicago Booth’s planned Fama-Miller Center. The school will recognize Mac and Leslie as the center’s first founding members when it is officially launched. The planned Fama-Miller Center’s focus will support and promote the research of what is widely regarded as the world’s best finance faculty.

”With this gift, the planned Fama Miller Center will have a terrific source of support upon its launch, enabling it to more quickly realize its goals,” said dean Edward A. Snyder when the gift was announced on June 15. “In vividly acknowledging the depth and importance of their relationship to Gene, Merton, and the finance faculty at Chicago Booth, Mac and Leslie McQuown are truly endorsing the power of ideas at the University of Chicago.”

Fama is Robert R. McCormick Distinguished Service Professor of Finance, a title Miller held until he retired in 1993. Miller won the Nobel Prize in 1990.