The Department is fortunate to benefit from a number of endowments established by its friends and former students. These benefactors have demonstrated a profound commitment to Michigan and to the humanities, as well as confidence in the Department and its programs.
A number of endowments have been established through the generosity of Marshall M. Weinberg (B.A., '50): the Endowment for the Frankena and Stevenson Prizes, in 1991; the Weinberg Endowment for Philosophy, utilized for graduate student summer fellowships, in 1995; the Weinberg Distinguished Visiting Professorship Endowment, in 1998; and the Fund for Philosophy and the Cognitive Sciences, in 2006. Most recently, in 2011, Mr. Weinberg established the Weinberg Professorship in Philosophy. Each endowment thus supports a distinctive need.
The James B. and Grace J. Nelson Endowment for the Teaching of Philosophy was established in 1991, funded by a 1940 gift from James B. Nelson (LL.B., 1893), and increased by subsequent gifts from Mr. and Mrs. Nelson and Mrs. Julia-Jean Nelson Stokes. The Endowment has funded the Nelson Professorship, Nelson Philosophers-in-Residence, and Michigan Nelson Seminars in Philosophy, as well as providing broad support for teaching and research in the Department.
Two endowments were established in the 1980's. In 1985, the late Obert C. Tanner, and Grace Adams Tanner, established the Obert C. Tanner Philosophy Endowment to support the Tanner Philosophical Library. The Tanners provided funds to establish the Library in 1970, and to add a second room in 1979.
In 1986, the late Malcolm L. Denise (B.A., '35, J.D., '37) established the Denise Philosophy Endowment, honoring Theodore C. Denise (B.A., '42, Ph.D., '55). The Denise Endowment, though unrestricted, has been used in support of faculty recruitment and retention.
The Elsa L. Haller (Ph.D., '58) Endowment, established in 1974, has been used since 1996 to fund Haller Prize Scholarships for undergraduates. The Hough Endowment, established in 1967 by bequest from Williston S. Hough (Ph.D., 1884), provides fellowship support for graduate students in ethics or philosophy of psychology.
In 2005, the Department received a generous bequest intention from donors who wish to remain anonymous to establish an endowment in support of undergraduate education in philosophy, through smaller classes and seminars, curricular innovation, and the development of new courses.