Cambridge in America Annual Report FY23

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Fiscal Year 2023

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In this issue: 2 Letter from the Board Chair

3 Letter from the Executive Director

8 CAm Philanthropy by the Numbers

4 Transforming Physics: The Dolby Legacy

9 An Eventful Year

Henry Louis Gates, Jr. Clare College

Carlos A. Pérez-Dávila Queens’ College

Stanley P. Gold Fitzwilliam College

Professor Deborah Prentice Vice-Chancellor

Gurnee F. Hart Jesus College Chairman Emeritus

Professor Pippa Rogerson Master, Gonville & Caius College

12 Portrait of a Donor: John Otto Kessler


As of July 31, 2023 Peter A. Dawson St. Catharine’s College Chair Marc A. Feigen St. John’s College Executive Vice-Chairman Richard K. Roeder St. John’s College Secretary Gavin Flynn Senior Bursar, Downing College Treasurer Gabrielle Bacon, PhD Hughes Hall Alison Davis Selwyn College Shawn M. Donnelley Corpus Christi College

Adrian N. Hobden, PhD Churchill College William H. Janeway, Hon. CBE, PhD Pembroke College Chairman Emeritus Chris Kojima Hughes Hall Marshal McReal Magdalene College Prakash A. Melwani Sidney Sussex College

Roger W. Ferguson, Jr., PhD Pembroke College

David Rowitch, MD, SCD, FMedSci, FRS Clare College Jacqueline Spayne, MD PhD Trinity College Rachelle Stretch, PhD Development Director, Trinity Hall Alison Traub Executive Director, Development and Alumni Relations Joe White MBE Sidney Sussex College C. Kern Wildenthal, MD PhD St. Catharine’s College


As of July 31, 2023

The Cambridge in America Advisory Committees seek to advance the support of Collegiate Cambridge and advise on strategic regional engagement to grow and sustain the networks of Cambridge alumni and friends across North America. NEW ENGLAND ADVISORY COMMITTEE David Collis (Downing 1973) Chair David Ballinger (Downing 1978) Matthew Fedors (Fitzwilliam 2007) Srid Iyengar (Girton 1995) John Lambert (Christ’s 1969) David Manns (Trinity 1964) Alan Smith (Christ’s 1964) Antonia von Gottberg (Newnham 1988) BAY AREA ADVISORY COMMITTEE Una Ryan (Girton 1963) Chair Peter Dawson (St. Catharine’s 1974) George Freeborn (Girton 1980)

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Stephen Johnson (Trinity 1975) Priyanka Joshi (Clare Hall 2011) Andy Micallef (Churchill 2000) Ronjon Nag (Wolfson 1984) Bob Rao (Jesus 1972) NEW YORK ADVISORY COMMITTEE Peter Selman (Fitzwilliam 1991) Chair Atul Aggarwal (Girton 1994) David Coulson (Clare 1990) Udi Chattopadhyay (Sidney Sussex 1992) Heidi Ha (Newnham 1990) Chad Shampine (Trinity 2000) Neil Westreich (Corpus Christi 1970)

WASHINGTON DC ADVISORY COMMITTEE Cristina Burelli (Queens 1981) Chair Justin Jacinto (Trinity Hall 1999) Blair Lapres (Darwin 2009) Christopher Ling (Churchill 1986) Donna Netschert (Selwyn) Irina Nikolic (Trinity Hall 1995) Joe Pesce (Peterhouse 1988) TORONTO ADVISORY COMMITTEE Jacqueline Spayne (Trinity 1981) Chair Stephen Coxford (Gonville & Caius 1980) Annemarie Pallister (Magdalene 1996) Henry Perren (Pembroke 1998) Wayne Pommen (Pembroke 2002)

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ON THE COVER King Charles at the groundbreaking for the University’s New Whittle Laboratory for net-zero aviation and energy. PHOTO COURTESY OF LLOYD MANN

University of Cambridge Shield. PHOTO COURTESY OF SIR CAM ©


Cambridge in America (CAm) advances the mission of the University of Cambridge and its thirty-one member colleges by providing expertise in philanthropy and engagement and by growing the base of support for Collegiate Cambridge among alumni and friends in the US.

CA m LEADERSHIP Executive Director Gabrielle Bennett Senior Director, Strategic Engagement Patricia Danver Chief Financial Officer Liliya Panko

2023 ANNUAL REPORT Editor Patricia Danver Writer Kamilla Hassen Design Michelle S. Baffuto

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Dear Alumni and Friends, It is my great pleasure to share with you Philanthropy Matters, a report on Cambridge in America’s activities for the recent fiscal year. I hope you are reading this message in good health and good spirits. Your philanthropy for Cambridge has contributed to a landmark year of accomplishing strategic goals and raising tremendous impact gifts for Cambridge and its Colleges.


A highlight of the 2022-23 fiscal year is the return to a full calendar of in-person events. I am particularly pleased to note that Cambridge in America has hosted events across the country, in all regions of the United States. A unique collaboration between Cambridge in America, the New York Public Library and the Cambridge University Library brought “Darwin in Conversation,” an exhibit of Charles Darwin’s life through his correspondence to the New York Public Library this past summer. This sort of transatlantic collaboration embodies the goals of Cambridge in America. Charles Darwin’s discoveries in evolutionary biology have universal impact. The illuminating exhibit curated by the University Library gave viewers an intimate look into the life of the man who went from Cambridge to transform our understanding of the living world. This bit of Cambridge could not have been brought to New York audiences without the generous collaboration of the New York Public Library and Cambridge in America­—and alumni and friends such as yourself. Our alumni in North America remain intellectually and personally engaged with the University and its Colleges. With your presence at our events, your gifts of time and funds, and all that you do for Cambridge, we are grateful to have you in the Cambridge in America community. Philanthropically, your gifts have made this the second-best year in the history of Cambridge in America. That is an achievement to celebrate, and we hope to celebrate with you soon at an event in Cambridge or across North America.


Peter Dawson (St Catharine’s) CHAIR

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Dear Alumni and Friends, I hope this finds you well. I am pleased to share with you some of the highlights of our fundraising year at Cambridge in America. This fiscal year, we have a lot to celebrate. We exceeded our overall fundraising goal, raising an incredible $131,639,352 for Cambridge and its Colleges. I want to thank and congratulate you for making this our best-ever year for six-figure gifts. We raised more than $10 million from 35 donors at this level to enhance learning, teaching and research across Cambridge. We are immensely grateful for the generosity of our alumni and friends, and all the inspiring research, programming, student support, renovations, and activities that it enables. In Annual Giving (gifts $50,000 and under), we worked with Colleges to raise more than $5 million for their most pressing needs. CAm has partnered with 27 Colleges to reach alumni across North America. We have big goals for the upcoming fiscal year, and we look forward to accomplishing them—thanks to your generosity and support.


This year the transformational and generous gift from the Dolby family for the new Ray Dolby Centre at the Cavendish Laboratory came to fruition. As we look forward to the building’s imminent completion, we celebrate the legacy of Ray Dolby and the immense impact it will have worldwide as one of the foremost hubs for physics research. Ray Dolby launched his business in London and grew it in his home state of California. With the generous gifts the Dolby family has given, his legacy will continue to provide for the collaborative research that Cambridge facilitates, which, as his example proves, goes on to serve the world in discovery and innovation. Cambridge in America is proud to be the home base for North American alumni and friends. We invite you to join us in committing to Cambridge and its mission to serve society. We hope to see you soon.

With gratitude,


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Transforming Physics:




RAY DOLBY, PhD (PEMBROKE 1961) changed how the world hears recorded sound. His inventions have touched lives in every corner of the globe. For example, the movie experience was forever changed when, during the opening sequence of Star Wars in 1977, audiences felt they could hear the Star Destroyer flying over their heads, thanks to Dolby’s technology. Ray Dolby’s legacy continues to further exploration and discovery of distant universes through generous gifts to Cambridge. Ray Dolby has a long and storied history with the University of Cambridge. After his death in 2013, his estate included transformational gifts that made the Dolby family the second-largest donor in the history of the University and a contributor to some of the most far-reaching progress in the teaching and research of physics.

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RAY DOLBY AND CAMBRIDGE Born January 18, 1933, in Portland, Oregon, Dolby grew up in the San Francisco Bay area. He began his Cambridge career in 1957 as a Marshall Scholar after receiving his BS in Electrical Engineering from Stanford University.

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As a research fellow at Pembroke College, Dolby worked in the Cavendish Laboratory’s Electron Microscopy Group. His PhD thesis on x-ray spectroscopy carbon under the supervision of Professor Ellis Coslett likely informed his interest in audio noise reduction. After finishing his PhD in 1961, he took on a two year assignment in India as an UNESCO technical advisor. Upon returning to Europe, Dolby set up Dolby Laboratories in London in 1965 to work on the Dolby System, an analogue audio encoding system that forever improved the quality of recorded sound. The Dolby noise reduction system became the standard for the professional recording industry and was soon after adopted by the consumer audio industry. In 1966, Dolby married German-born Dagmar Bäumert, whom he met at Cambridge while she was attending a summer language program in the UK. The Dolbys had two sons, Tom and Dave. In 1976, he moved the company to San Francisco. Dolby was named an Honorary Fellow of Pembroke in 1983, and Cambridge conferred an honorary Doctor of Science degree in 1997. “Great minds have always been drawn to Cambridge, and Ray steadfastly believed that by Cambridge educating the most brilliant and the most curious, those students could and would solve some of the most important unanswered questions of our world,” said Dagmar Dolby. “We feel passionately about ensuring that Ray’s belief in the power of physics research and teaching at the University continues to be realized.”

CARRYING ON THE LEGACY OF A WORLD-CLASS EDUCATION In 2017, the University of Cambridge received an £85 million gift from the Dolby estate to build the new flagship building of the Cavendish Laboratory redevelopment, the Ray Dolby Centre. “The Ray Dolby Centre will complete the development of the new Cavendish Laboratory. In addition to serving as a home for physics research at Cambridge, it will be a top-class facility for the nation,” said Professor Andy Parker, then Head of the Cavendish Laboratory and now Master of Peterhouse. “This extremely generous gift from the Dolby family is the most significant investment in physics research in generations, and a truly transformational gift in Cambridge’s history.” The gift to support the Cavendish Laboratory made the Dolby family the largest donor to the “Dear World . . .” fundraising campaign, and the largest donor to the University in its 808-year history. The new Ray Dolby Research Group will be established at the Cavendish, which will significantly expand research capability and expertise within the new building. The group, led by a newly endowed Ray Dolby Professorship, will build on and further strengthen the Cavendish Laboratory’s status and impact as one of the greatest centers of physics research in the world.


GIFT TO PEMBROKE COLLEGE In 2015, the Dolby family made a transformational gift to Pembroke College. Their gift of £35 million constituted the largest gift to a Cambridge college in modern times, and the largest gift to the “Dear World . . . Yours, Cambridge” philanthropic campaign, which launched in that year. The gift allowed Pembroke College to purchase and develop the Mill Lane site, which will open in 2024. The Mill Lane site will enlarge the College’s footprint by a third, adding more than one hundred new student rooms as well as additional teaching and meeting spaces. At the center of the Mill Lane extension is the “Ray and Dagmar Dolby Court.” In 2020, the family made an additional gift of £16 million in the form of matching funds to complete the fundraising for the Mill Lane extension including the addition of a new auditorium for Pembroke College.

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Cavendish Laboratory opens under direction of James Clerk Maxwell, the first Cavendish Professor of Experimental Physics



Ray Dolby Ray Dolby receives completes his his BS in Cambridge Electrical PhD, “Long Engineering Wavelength from Stanford X-Ray University Microanalysis” and arrives at Pembroke College as a Marshall Scholar








Ray Dolby works as United Nations Technical Advisor and helps set up the Central Scientific Instruments Organization in India

Ray Dolby sets up Dolby Laboratories in London to work on noise reduction technologies

New Cavendish Laboratory facilities open in West Cambridge

Dolby Laboratories introduces Dolby Stereo, a product aimed at motion picture producers and theaters

Dolby Laboratories relocates headquarters to San Francisco

Star Wars opens with Dolby Stereo

Ray Dolby and Ioan Allen receive Oscar for Technical Achievement


After pledging funds for the building, the Dolby Family Fund for Excellence in Physics was established in 2022 with a planned gift of £70 million to provide for professorships, research fellowships and studentships at the Centre. The Dolby Family Fund will enable the University to ensure it always has the financial resources needed to successfully recruit and retain

distinguished academics across the Cavendish Laboratory’s three overarching areas of distinction: Fundamental and Emerging Physics, Biomedical Physics and the Physics of Medicine, and Quantum Systems and Technologies. It is envisaged that the fund will establish six permanently endowed academic chairs, six permanently endowed postdoctoral research fellowships and twelve permanently endowed PhD studentships at the Cavendish Laboratory. It will also create a new annual symposium and provide flexible funding for start-up costs associated with the work of the endowed academic chairs. “We’re already seeing the difference Ray Dolby’s legacy has made as we recruit for the inaugural Ray Dolby Chair,” said Professor Parker. “The funding, resources and opportunities the Dolby Family Fund will provide for students, researchers and academics sets the Ray Dolby Centre up for success even before it opens in 2024.”

Mrs. Dagmar Dolby and her granddaughters, Julia and Violet, at the opening of Phase I of Pembroke’s Mill Lane (Dolby Court) site in June 2023. PHOTO COURTESY OF DAVID JOHNSON, PEMBROKE COLLEGE

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First film in Dolby Stereo Digital, Batman Returns, premiers in 10 US theaters

First Dolby Digital consumer products introduced

Dolby Laboratories IPO listed on NYSE with ticker symbol DLB

Ray Dolby passes away

The Dolby estate provides £35 million to Pembroke College for the Mill Lane extension

An additional gift of £85 million from the Dolby estate funds the Ray Dolby Centre at the Cavendish Laboratory and establishes the Ray Dolby Professorship

Construction begins on the new Ray Dolby Centre in West Cambridge

Challenge gift of £16 million to Pembroke College to complete the Mill Lane extension

The Dolby Family Fund is established with a planned gift of £70 million to provide funding for professorships, research fellows and students at the Centre

Expected completion and opening of the Ray Dolby Centre and Mill Lane extension


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Cambridge in America

FY23 PHILANTHROPY We are pleased to report that Cambridge in America had its second highest year of fundraising in FY23, with more than $131M raised for the Colleges and University initiatives across research, teaching and learning. Gifts came from all sectors of the US Cambridge community—alumni, non-alumni, corporations, foundations—to support individual colleges, scholarships, fellowships and bursaries, and research initiatives addressing some of our greatest challenges. Overall alumni giving to CAm increased 50% since FY22 and 71% since FY21. Alumni giving also outpaced giving from all other sources combined except Estates, noting that the largest Estate gift came from an alumnus, Ray Dolby (Pembroke 1964). 8

Our Annual Giving program continues to gain strength, offering a pathway to engagement and support of Collegiate Cambridge.

Our deepest thanks to all who participate in supporting Collegiate Cambridge! FY 23 PHILANTHROPIC DOLLARS BY SOURCE











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In FY23, we returned to a full calendar of in-person events. Across North America in 20 cities and regions, University of Cambridge alumni came together to learn, eat, drink and connect.










Charles Darwin: A Life in Letters and Charles Darwin: Off the Page In May 2023, a partnership between the Cambridge University Library and the New York Public Library brought Charles Darwin: A Life in Letters and Charles Darwin: Off the Page to the Stephen A. Schwartzman Building. The two exhibitions explored the life of the celebrated scientist through his correspondence.

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Mary Beard—Will the Real Emperor Vitellius Please Stand Up?


In April 2023, Mary Beard, Professor Emerita and one of Britain’s best-known Classicists, led a discussion titled “Will the Real Emperor Vitellius Please Stand Up? Finding a Roman Emperor in Modern Art” at the Art Institute of Chicago.

Professor Dame Mary Beard


Western International Order from the Centre for Geopolitics In April 2023, Cambridge in America and the CAm Toronto Regional Committee hosted “Threats to Western International Order­—The Return of Peer Competition” with the University of Cambridge Centre for Geopolitics.

L-R, Professors Brendan Simms and William Hurst of the Centre for Geopolitics, Toronto Committee Chair Jacqueline Spayne, MD, PhD and former Vice-Chancellor Stephen Toope

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Madagascar: Climate Change in An Unpredictable Environment with Professor Dame Alison Richard Former Vice-Chancellor Professor Dame Alison Richard (Newnham) visited Seattle to discuss The Sloth Lemur’s Song: Madagascar from the Deep Past to the Uncertain Present. She discussed her work in a conversation moderated by noted pulmonologist and NBC/MSNBC medical analyst Vin Gupta (Sidney Sussex) MD, MSt, MPA on the rich history of Madagascar­—one of the world’s biodiversity hotspots, the threats it faces, and what it says about global climate change.


Vin Gupta, MD, MSt, MPA and Dame Alison Richard.


J.P. Morgan Healthcare Conference Cambridge in America’s Bay Area Regional Committee hosted alumni and guests attending the J.P. Morgan Healthcare Conference for a Cambridge alumni networking reception in January 2023.

Event attendees at the J.P. Morgan Healthcare Conference reception. PHOTO COURTESY OF JACK SIMPSON

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Portrait of a Donor:



Professor John Otto Kessler, who passed away in September 2022, was a physicist with impeccable powers of observation and intuitive understanding of physics. He considered Cambridge, where he conducted pioneering research, an ideal intellectual environment for his exploratory, collaborative approach. John was born in Vienna, Austria on November 26, 1928. In 1938, after his father was arrested by the Nazis on Kristallnacht, his mother secured the family’s escape from Austria by obtaining positions for herself and her husband at a home in Sussex, England. There, John attended Midhurst Grammar School and became, in his words, “a regular English schoolboy.” The family settled in the United States in 1940. After finishing his PhD at Columbia University in 1953, he worked at RCA before moving on to the University of Arizona, where he spent most of his professional career. In the 1980s, John found a home at Clare Hall when he was invited by the Department of Applied Mathematics and Theoretical Physics for a sabbatical. During a talk on swimming microorganisms, John called for a theoretician to join him in the work. Applied mathematician Tim Pedley, G.I. Taylor Professor of Fluid Mechanics (now Emeritus), answered the call, teaming up with John on a series of projects.

John Kessler hiking in the Redwoods, Northern California. PHOTO COURTESY OF HELEN J. KESSLER

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Their work laid the foundation of what is now a major area of study in the department. “A great deal of the biological mechanics work we do [at Cambridge] stems from John’s sabbatical,” noted Pedley. Over decades of collaboration, the two espoused an approach that valued fearless curiosity. “We agreed the most important thing was to ask all sorts of questions, as soon as they come to mind,” said Pedley. This child-like curiosity was infectious. John made friends in other departments throughout Cambridge, discussing and delighting in the areas their work overlapped. He was “supremely good at discovering things,” according to Cambridge colleague Raymond E. Goldstein, FRS, Schlumberger Professor of Complex Physical Systems and Fellow of Churchill College. “He realized long before anyone else that the collective behavior of large numbers of microorganisms is an interesting scientific problem.” Studying the physics of these behaviors formed the core of his research and decades-long collaborations at Cambridge. Encouraging colleagues to pursue their intuitions is part of John’s legacy at Cambridge, according to Goldstein. Thanks to his bequest to Cambridge in America for Clare Hall, future scholars will have the opportunity to explore Cambridge in the curious, tinkering, and enthusiastic spirit of John Kessler.

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Established by Cambridge in America in 1998, The 1209 Society celebrates the many generous benefactors in the US who recognize the importance of the University of Cambridge and its thirty-one Colleges through their estate planning. With 273 members and growing, The 1209 Society is also a wonderful way to connect with like-minded alumni and friends of Collegiate Cambridge. When you notify us that you have included your College or the University in your estate plans, it is known as a bequest intention. With this, we will be pleased to invite you to become a lifetime member of The 1209 Society.


The 1209 Society membership benefits include: } Invitations to special events } Recognition certificate (signed by the

Vice-Chancellor of the University and the Chair of the Board of Directors of Cambridge in America)

} Bi-annual newsletter, 1209 Notes } Listing in The 1209 Society Roll of Honor

(a bound book listing honorees kept by the University)


visit, contact our office at, or call +1 (212) 984-0960.

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1120 Avenue of the Americas 7th Floor New York, NY 10036


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