How time flies! This year, we’re very proud to be celebrating the ten-year anniversary of the Wisconsin School of Business Naming Partnership. The Naming Partnership began in fall of 2007, when the Wisconsin School of Business received an $85MM “naming” donation that came without a name attached to it. Instead, 13 like-minded UW alumni donors had come together to request that the Wisconsin School of Business preserve its name for the following twenty years. The naming gift received both national and international press, as it was innovative in the world of philanthropy, and the first of its kind in the history of U.S. business schools. This gesture signified an incredible message that our school still uses as inspiration today: by working together, we can achieve greatness.

You may wonder how the WSB Naming Partnership has influenced the Center for Brand and Product Management in particular? In short, the answer is immensely. Without seed funding from our Naming Partners Scott Cook and Signe Otsby in 2002, the Center for Brand and Product Management would not have originated. We’re so grateful for the investment of these naming partners, and their commitment to the advancement of the Brand Center, as well as the students enrolled here.

Another profound offering that the WSB Naming Partnership provides the Center for Brand and Product Management is the funding of MBA Consortium students. Since receiving the gift in 2007, the Center for Brand and Product Management has enrolled 46 Consortium members. Donations from the Naming Partnership made it possible for us to present competitive fellowship offers to these students, which ultimately allowed us to secure their acceptance to the program.

Even ten years later, the spirit of the WSB Naming Partnership guides many of the decisions we make at the Center for Brand and Product Management. The students we accept, relationships we foster, collaborative curriculum we design, and alumni impact we create are all a reflection of the Partnership’s original mission.

The beauty of the Wisconsin Naming Partnership is that there is always an opportunity to grow the size of the gift, or lengthen its term. The investment could live on in perpetuity, as no single donor has full ownership, and new donors can join as time goes on. Today, the Wisconsin Naming Partnership consists of 16 partners, 3 of which are anonymous, and over $100M in investments. We thank these partners for investing in our students, and investing in the Wisconsin School of Business. See the list of Wisconsin Naming Partners here.