OXFORD — Miami University President Gregory P. Crawford today announced a $40 million gift to the Farmer School of Business from Richard T. “Dick” and Joyce Farmer and the Farmer Family Foundation.
The gift will support all elements of the Farmer School of Business, including its faculty, students, emerging programs and curricula enhancements and will propel the Farmer School of Business as a leader in undergraduate business education.
“We have such wonderful memories here, Joyce and I, as do our children and grandchildren,” said Dick Farmer, retired chairman and CEO of Cintas Corp. “The Farmer School is one of the greatest undergraduate business schools in the country, and to remain great requires constant innovation. It requires talented, motivated students learning relevant skills from dedicated faculty.”
In 1992, the Farmers provided the cornerstone gift to the School of Business. In 2005, the Farmer Family Foundation was the lead donor for the construction of the Farmer School of Business building and faculty support. This new $40 million commitment is the largest of any single foundation or individual in the university’s 207-year history.
After graduating from Miami in 1956 with a degree in business, Dick Farmer served in the U.S. Marine Corps and then joined the family business. Farmer left the company in 1968 to start what would become Cintas Corp. He retired as CEO and chairman in 2009. Joyce Barnes Farmer earned her bachelor’s degree in elementary education from Miami in 1957. Both Dick and Joyce have served Miami University and the Farmer School of Business in volunteer leadership roles and advisory boards. In addition to Dick and Joyce, the trustees of the Farmer Family Foundation include Miami alumni Brynne Farmer Coletti ’79, Robert E. Coletti ’79, Scott Farmer ’82, Mary Jamieson Farmer ’86, Amy Farmer Joseph ’86 and George R. Joseph.
“The incredible commitment and generosity the Farmers have to their alma mater speaks volumes,” said Crawford. “It’s this type of vision and leadership that will position Miami at the forefront in groundbreaking programs and solutions that enable all students to excel in the fast-changing global economy.”
“The support and guidance the Farmers have provided to the School of Business are major contributors to our students’ continued success,” said Matt Myers, dean and Mitchell P. Rales Chair of Business Leadership of the Farmer School of Business. “Their generosity allows talented students the access to a Miami education and allows us to attract and retain top faculty and staff and to develop visionary programming – all vital to a world-class educational institution.”
The Farmer School of Business serves more than 4,000 students and nearly 40,000 alumni worldwide. It has consistently ranked in the top tier of public university undergraduate business school programs and in 2016, Money magazine noted it as a top 10 producer of Fortune 500 CEOs.
“We are extremely proud of the work that Miami University and the Farmer School of Business do to prepare students for a successful future,” said John Carey, chancellor of the Ohio Department of Higher Education. “This generous gift from the Farmer family ensures that Miami will be able to continue that work for generations to come.”