University of Virginia Board of Visitors member Robert Hardie and his wife Molly Hardie announced a $7 million gift to the university on Tuesday, with $6 million going to the school’s Athletic Master Plan.
Robert Hardie, a Virginia alumnus, currently serves as the co-chairman and CEO of H7 Holdings LLC and Level One Partners LLC. Molly Hardie, a Virginia alumna, also serves as a co-chair for H7 Holdings and does additional work on local boards in the Charlottesville area. Both have supported the university and athletic programs over the years.
“We are grateful and humbled to be able to support UVa, an institution that has had a profound impact on our lives and those of our children,” the Hardies said in a statement. “Our latest gifts are testaments to the leadership and vision of [Athletics Director] Carla Williams and [Vice President and Chief Student Affairs Officer] Pat Lampkin, as well as [Virginia President] Jim Ryan and his team. These projects are critical to the development and well-being of student-athletes and all students.”
The Athletics Master Plan holds an estimated cost of $180 million, and all of that money will come from private donations. The plan calls for numerous additions and improvements to facilities, including a new football operations center, an Olympic sports center and a renovated McCue Center, according to the news release.
The release also discusses a space for career development and academic support.
The donation from the Hardies comes a little over a week after men’s basketball head coach Tony Bennett’s pledge of $500,000 to a career development program for his current and former players became public.
That program, which is brand new, is designed to help former and current players succeed when they take jobs outside of basketball.
By donating $6 million, the Hardie family is helping the Athletics Master Plan move right along.
“Robert and Molly have supported our vision with their time, talent and resources since day one,” Williams said in the release. “Their commitment to the University and UVa Athletics has been a constant source of encouragement to me, our coaches and our student-athletes. We need support for the Master Plan and I’m so thankful to both of them for helping us get closer to making the project a reality.”