Villanova alumnus and investment banker William B. Finneran has gifted $22.6 million to his alma mater in the wake of its men’s basketball team’s thrilling national championship, writes Jeff Blumenthal of the Philadelphia Business Journal.
The donation is earmarked for the renovation of the Pavilion as well as programmatic support for the men’s basketball program. It is the largest gift ever given to Villanova athletics.
According to Blumenthal, Finneran is a 1963 Villanova graduate with an economics degree who has served as a university trustee through 2008 and as a campaign chair for the previous capital campaign. He received an honorary doctorate from the school in 1994 in recognition of his generosity, which includes endowing the men’s basketball head coaching position.
Finneran has served as chairman and managing director of EXOP Capital, LLC, a hedge-fund firm based in New York City, which he co-founded in 2005.
The Pavilion opened in 1986 and was originally named after John E. DuPont. But his surname was removed after he was convicted of shooting and killing Dave Schultz, the Olympic gold-medal-winning wrestler, in 1997.
Villanova’s press release did not indicate what the renovations for the 6,500-seat arena would entail.
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