National arts and cultural leader honored for significant achievements in philanthropy
Jane Chu, Ph.D. ’12, has been named the recipient of the Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy’s 2017 Distinguished Alumni Award.
The 11th chairman of the National Endowment for the Arts, Chu has a strong background in philanthropy and in arts administration. Throughout her professional career, she has served in leadership positions in a number of philanthropic institutions, including organizations committed to strengthening the arts, culture and local communities.
“In all that she does, Jane demonstrates a contagious energy and a deep commitment to philanthropy and to excellence in serving others that is an inspiration to our students and her fellow alumni,” said Amir Pasic, Ph.D., the Eugene R. Tempel Dean of the school. “We are proud of her many contributions to the philanthropic sector, and we appreciate her generosity in sharing her experiences and insights with her alma mater.”
As president and CEO of the Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts in Kansas City, Missouri, Chu oversaw a $413 million campaign to build the center. She previously was a fund executive at the Kauffman Fund for Kansas City, and had served as vice president of external relations for Union Station Kansas City. She also was vice president of community investment for the Greater Kansas City Community Foundation.
Chu was born in Shawnee, Oklahoma, and raised in Arkadelphia, Arkansas, the daughter of Chinese immigrants. An accomplished artist and musician, she received bachelor's degrees in piano performance and music education from Ouachita Baptist University, and master's degrees in music and piano pedagogy from Southern Methodist University. Chu holds a master's degree in business administration from Rockhurst University in addition to a Ph.D. in philanthropic studies from the Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy at IUPUI.
The award was presented to Chu by Tami Tarpley, M.A.’10, chair of the school’s alumni association, who noted, “Her tireless advocacy for art across our country, refined leadership, extraordinary fundraising achievements, commitment to upholding philanthropy as an honorable career and outstanding support of the Lilly Family School are just some of the reasons Jane was chosen as this year’s recipient.
The Distinguished Alumni Award was created in 2015 by the Lilly Family School of Philanthropy’s alumni board to assist the school in recognizing significant achievement in the fields of philanthropic research, practice and academic study. For over a quarter of a century, people of diverse talents have been educated by the school and its predecessor, the Center on Philanthropy at Indiana University. The 2016 Distinguished Alumni Award was presented to Richard Trollinger, vice president for college relations at Centre College in Danville, Kentucky. The inaugural award was received by Genevieve G. Shaker, M.A. ’98, who was then associate dean for development and external affairs at the IU School of Liberal Arts at IUPUI and an assistant professor of philanthropic studies at the Lilly Family School of Philanthropy. Shaker is now an associate professor of philanthropic studies at the school.
Award recipients must have a minimum of 10 years of experience in the field of philanthropic research, practice or academic study; be at least five years removed from their graduation; demonstrate significant professional achievement and leadership in furthering philanthropy; and provide leadership and service within professional associations, philanthropic organizations or to the school or IUPUI.
About the Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy
The Lilly Family School of Philanthropy at IUPUI is dedicated to improving philanthropy to improve the world by training and empowering students and professionals to be innovators and leaders who create positive and lasting change in the world. The school offers a comprehensive approach to philanthropy through its academic, research and international programs and through The Fund Raising School, Lake Institute on Faith & Giving and the Women’s Philanthropy Institute. Follow us on Twitter @IUPhilanthropy or “Like” us on Facebook.