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CEO of Major Corporation Makes Multi-Million Dollar Donation to Support Education of College Students in Accounting Integrity

Published 03-04-03

Submitted by Loyola Marymount University

LOS ANGELES, CA - Endeavoring to strengthen the business industry's sagging moral foundations and declining reputation, R. Chad Dreier, chairman, president, and chief executive officer of The Ryland Group, one of the nation's largest homebuilders and a leading mortgage-finance company, has pledged $3.5 million to Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles to establish an endowed chair in accounting who will emphasize ethics education.

"We are at a crossroads in the accounting profession from an ethical standpoint. You can hardly pick up a newspaper today without reading about another business scandal. The sheer number of accounting abuses tells us that something more is needed," said Dreier, chair of Loyola Marymount's Board of Trustees. "Without an ethical foundation, organizations collapse."

The newly endowed chair, named the R. Chad Dreier Chair in Accounting in the College of Business Administration, will strengthen the training of accountants and their positive influence in American business. Loyola Marymount is one of the only schools in the country to endow a chair placing ethical decision-making at the forefront of accounting education.

"As we prepare students for the accounting profession, it is critical that we place a significant emphasis on integrity as a matter of business practice," said Robert B. Lawton, SJ, president of Loyola Marymount. "Exploring values and the difficulty of applying them consistently in everyday life is an essential part of the education we provide."

"Chad's donation enables us to continue to build excellence within the college. We are grateful to him for his vision and foresight regarding the value of ethical academics to the health of the accounting curriculum and the broader community," said John Wholihan, Dean of the College of Business Administration.

Added Dreier, "Business schools are the pipeline to the future of business, integrity is the first requirement of success, and a thorough understanding of ethics is part of the foundation of a well-rounded education. We need to teach our students a sense of moral obligation."

One of the chair's objectives will be to teach an approach for handling ethical questions and to dispel an attitude among business students that the bottom line is the only relevant consideration. Other goals include strengthening student understanding of ethical issues they may confront and to provide students with the basic tools for addressing and resolving these issues so they enter the business world better prepared to confront such challenges.

With a total gift of $5 million, including the endowment, Dreier and his wife, Ginni, have launched the leadership phase of the University's new comprehensive fund-raising campaign. Their gift also pledges $1 million to the construction of a new athletic training facility and weight training room for the Department of Athletics, $250,000 for equipment for the School of Film and Television, and $250,000 to support the university's current programs.

Dreier, who participated in Loyola Marymount's Air Force ROTC program, earned a Bachelor's degree in Accounting in 1969 before enrolling in the United States Air Force. Dreier and his wife met on campus, where Ginni was a student at Marymount College before it merged with Loyola University in 1973. Dreier, whose firm is headquartered in Calabasas, Calif., in the Los Angeles area, has spent most of his career in the homebuilding industry. His career successes have focused on building profitable companies, business
turnarounds, and change management. The Dreiers live in Santa Barbara, Calif., where they are active members of the community -- providing both personal and financial support to a number of community organizations, especially those dedicated to literacy, education and health-related causes.

About Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles

Founded in 1911, Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles is the eighth largest of the nation's 28 Jesuit colleges and universities and the largest Catholic university in Southern California. With a strong base in the liberal arts, LMU serves more than 5,300 undergraduates and about 3,000 graduate students. LMU includes four colleges: the Bellarmine College of Liberal Arts, the College of Business Administration, the College of Communication and Fine Arts, and the College of Science and Engineering, as well as the School of Education, the School of Film and Television, the Graduate Division, Continuing Education, and Loyola Law School. For more
information, visit the LMU website at

Note: For interviews with R. Chad Dreier or John Wholihan, please call 310.338.2389.

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