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Naples Resident Donates Lead Gift to Enrich FGCU’s College Experience

FORT MYERS, FL - Florida Gulf Coast University President Wilson G. Bradshaw announced a generous lead gift from Naples resident Janet G. Cohen.  The $3 million legacy gift will be used to enhance the University and enrich the college experience.

Cincinatti attorney turned developer Harvey Cohen and his wife Janet moved to Naples in the 1980s.  A few years ago they began to consider their legacy and how their success could be directed in an array of philanthropy.  Their first gift was made to NCH to help build North Collier Hospital.  They also supported the Holocaust Museum and Education Center of Southwest Florida.   Both of these gifts speak to their concern for humanity and their love of community. 

The Cohens watched as Florida Gulf Coast University was founded and they witnessed its extraordinary growth in terms of enrollment, facilities and significance to the region in the following decade.  In support of its students and to help the institution continue this extraordinary momentum of growth, the Cohens established a scholarship fund in 2006 and then began investigating other giving opportunities at FGCU.  Before Harvey passed away in February 2011, he and Janet had decided their gift to FGCU would support student engagement.  

“When students are involved beyond the classroom, they develop enduring friendships, lifelong leadership skills and the values of civility, cooperation and caring.  These were the interactions, skills and values that were important to the Cohens’ own success and they found particular worth in these FGCU’s initiatives that typically occur in a student union,” stated FGCU President Bradshaw during this announcement.   

According to Janet, this gift was particularly important to Harvey.  When she presented their gift last Friday, she expressed her hope that the University would remember him fondly.  

September 26, 2011


 Donor Recognition Societies:


The President's Society

 Annual membership in The President's Society includes donors who make a minimum gift of $1,000 and it brings many rewards.  The most significant of these is the satisfaction that comes from knowing your gift to education is framing the future of the best and brightest minds and bringing distinction to Florida Gulf Coast University.

The President's Society Life Member
(Any individual contributing a single gift of $25,000 or more to the President's Society)

The President's Society Annual Member
(Any individual or corporation making an annual unrestricted gift of $1,000 to $24,999 to The President's Society)


The Order of the Majestic Eagle

 The Order of the Majestic Eagle is the University’s highest honor, which is bestowed upon its members at the Foundation's annual gala (The President's Celebration).  Those inducted into the Order have been instrumental in advancing the University through gifts of great significance.   


The Covenant Society

The Covenant Society recognizes alumni and friends who have included Florida Gulf Coast University as a beneficiary in their estate plans through deferred gifts such as bequests in wills and living trusts, life insurance policies, and qualified retirement accounts.

The Heritage Society

The Heritage Society recognizes alumni and friends who have included Florida Gulf Coast University as a beneficiary in their estate plans through deferred gifts such as charitable gift annuities, charitable remainder trusts, and retained life estates.

The Legacy Society

The Legacy Society recognizes alumni and friends who have made estate distributions to Florida Gulf Coast University.  These ultimate gifts have contributed to FGCU's ability to provide outstanding higher education and public service throughout Southwest Florida.


For more information, please call Pete Lefferts, Director of Planned Giving, 590-1077.