Friday, November 17, 2017
Two visionary philanthropists
By Danny J. Bakewell, Jr., Sentinel Contributing Writer
Published March 15, 2012

Peter and Verna Dauterive

Drs. Verna and Peter Dauterive Social Science Building to Break Ground on USC Campus this fall

They first met in the library at USC as students and their business and philanthropic endeavors have quietly left a footprint for serving USC and our community for a lifetime.

Verna and Peter Dauterive have always been committed to the advancement and promotion of education.  Now, the Verna and Peter Dauterive Hall will serve as a center for research and teaching, for the USC Dornsife College of Letters, Arts and Sciences and for USC’s professional schools.

Dr. Verna Dauterive who also serves as a member of the USC Board of Trustees has committed her $30 million dollar gift to name the first interdisciplinary social sciences building on the campus of USC.

Dr. Dauterive, who first announced her gift in 2008 at the USC Black Alumni Association Gala Dinner at the time, was considered the largest single donation in the United States by an African American to an institution of higher learning. Verna Dauterive made the contribution in honor of her husband, the late Peter Dauterive. 

USC President C.L. Max Nikias, in a statement to the USC Chronicle of the building had this to say, “This structure will forever stand in testament to Verna’s visionary philanthropy, as well as her long standing dedication, along with that of her late husband, [Peter], to the university and its mission, to educate the leaders of the future, and produce scholarly work that will change the world.”

Both Drs. Verna and Peter Dauterive were very active within the African American community and have always been lifelong supporters of the Trojan Family.  Peter Dauterive worked as an Executive Vice President and Managing Officer at Broadway Federal Savings and Loan, and later became the founding President and CEO of Founders Savings and Loan; (both were considered major financial institutions within the Black Community).

Verna Dauterive received both her master’s degree and her doctoral degrees from the USC Rosier School of Education; she had a 62-year career with the Los Angeles School District where she served as a teacher, superintendent’s coordinator of integration program, administrator of university relations and principal.

Mrs. Dauterive was one of a small group of alumni who formed the nucleus of the USC Black Alumni Association, and her husband was its first significant donor.  The couple also created the first major endowed scholarship at the USC Rossier School to attract worthy Black students who could pursue a doctorate in education.

Michelle Turner, Executive Director of USC Office of Black Alumni Programs and the USC Black Alumni Association had this to say about Dr. Dauterive and the naming of the new Social Science Building, “Dr. Dauterive continues to demonstrate “legacy building” at the highest levels at USC.  She has been a constant force in the development and growth of USC as institution which values diversity, whether as a founding member of the USC BAA with her husband Peter, as the first major donor to BAA scholarships, as an educator, a USC Trustee, and now through the naming of a significant building.  She has my greatest respect, as she truly cares about excellence, and lives it daily.  I am proud to consider her as a friend and role model.”

In previous years Dr. Dauterive has also continued to support the USC Black Alumni Association, the USC Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center, The USC Marshall School of Business and the USC School of Theatre.  Dr. Dauterive also continues to work tirelessly to insure that African American Students are prepared and accepted into USC.

Categories: Local

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