David and Valerie Robinson's Donation Totals $9 Million
NBA center David Robinson made public on Friday his plans to retire after the San Antonio Spurs’ 2002-2003 basketball season. Following this disclosure, David and Valerie Robinson announced the decision to pledge additional funding to The Carver Academy, making their collective personal contribution $9 million.
“The support The Carver Academy has received from the San Antonio community and from around the nation has been phenomenal. With the announcement of my future retirement, my wife, Valerie, and I decided to make this definitive gift to help build the school’s permanent endowment,” said school founder David Robinson.
Considered to be the single largest contribution ever made by a professional athlete, this donation brings the school’s combined capital campaign total to more than $17.8 million. Included is $12.7 million committed by individuals, corporations and foundations toward the Academy’s $19 million construction project. Also, to support the school in perpetuity, $5 million has been pledged to help build a $35 million endowment.
“The Carver Academy is a project of excellence,” said Robinson. “I will always be committed to maintaining the school’s mission. I feel confident that once the endowment goal is met, the Academy will have the means to continue high-quality student programs well into the future.”
The Robinson family wanted to develop a lasting project that would empower inner-city children to overcome economic and emotional obstacles in order to lead productive lives. In 1997, they committed $5 million to create
a new independent school serving primarily low-income African-American and Hispanic families on San Antonio’s culturally diverse East Side.
In May 1999, David Robinson took a leadership role and became chairman of The Carver Academy. Construction began in December 2000 as Robinson led fundraising efforts. The family anonymously donated another $2 million to continue construction and fund student scholarships in September 2001. Today’s added pledge of $2 million to support the school’s permanent endowment will complete their financial commitment totaling $9 million.
“Although we have more funds to raise, the generous support The Carver Academy has already received gives us great encouragement and validates our decision to make this final financial commitment,” said Robinson.
Named for George Washington Carver, the school opened on September 17, 2001, with 60 pre-kindergarten through second grade children. The Carver Academy is adding a third grade class for the 2002-2003 academic year. Once fully operational, the school will accommodate up to 290 students through eighth grade. The Carver Academy’s challenging academic program features small classes, leadership opportunities, and a nurturing family-like atmosphere based upon the foundation of Judeo-Christian scripture.
For enrollment information, or to make donations, call (210) 223-8885.