Bren Gives $20M to Irvine Schools

Bren gives $20M to Irvine schools
Gift to Go Toward Arts, Sciences

By Michael Lyster, Orange County Business Journal Staff, April 10, 2006

Irvine schools are getting $20 million for arts and sciences in a gift unveiled Monday by Donald Bren.

Bren, chairman and owner of The Irvine Company, gave the money for the hiring of teachers who specialize in the arts, music and science.

Students in grades fourth through sixth are set to benefit from the money during the next 10 years.

“A well-rounded education that prepares students to succeed and fully enjoy and appreciate life includes art, music and science,” Bren said.

Bren announced the donation at Irvine’s Alderwood Basics Plus school. The gift nearly triples the amount of funding for enrichment programs in the Irvine Unified School District.

Last year, Bren pledged $20 million to support the Irvine Ranch Land Reserve Trust. In all, he’s given $50 million for a 50,000-acre land preserve that stretches from the hills to the Pacific Ocean.

In 2003, Bren gave $20 million to the University of California, Irvine’s computer school. He’s given $40 million to UC Irvine in all.

Bren and his foundation have pledged some $200 million to Irvine schools.